Albrighton backs Ahmadi to make impact
Marc Albrighton says Karim El Ahmadi will be a "big asset" after he sacrificed the chance to play in the Champions League for Villa.
Midfielder El Ahmadi has become the first signing of new Villa manager Paul Lambert on a three year contract from Feyenoord. The 27-year-old will link up with his team-mates for the first time when they report back for pre-season training on Thursday. Albrighton told Villa's official website: "It's great to see Karim come in. When you see us signing players from Feyenoord - a huge European club - it can only be positive. "Feyenoord are a massive name and for that reason they will only have quality players in their ranks. If we are signing players from their team, who qualified for the Champions League, it just shows how big Villa are. "Karim obviously plays in central midfield and that's a vital area on the pitch. I think he can do a job for us in there. The reports I have heard are that he is a real quality player. He will be a big asset for us in that central ground. I am sure he will do great for us." Keeper Shay Given and defender Richard Dunne have been given additional time off after playing for the Republic of Ireland during Euro 2012.