Clark hopes Villa can push on
Irish youngster reveals dressing room relief at Villa Park
Last Updated: May 8, 2012 11:49am
Ciaran Clark: Feels Villa's players have shown a good attitude in testing times
Ciaran Clark believes Aston Villa's youngsters will be stronger after coming through a difficult Premier League season.
Clark netted the opening goal as Villa drew 1-1 at home to Tottenham on Sunday to realistically guarantee their top-flight status.
It has been a challenging campaign for the former top-six regulars with supporters frequently protesting against manager Alex McLeish.
But having seen several young players blooded this season, Clark believes the campaign will have toughened up Villa's team.
"I think everyone has been strong and shown good attitude," the versatile 22-year-old told Aston Villa's official website.
"The players have shown a good attitude and that's shown, especially getting the result against Tottenham.
"Hopefully the club can (come back) stronger from a season like this. Hopefully we can use this experience in the seasons to come and build on it and push forward.
"There are loads of exciting young players - (Marc) Albrighton, (Barry) Bannan and (Andreas) Weimann. We've all played together since 15-16 and know what each other can do and we bond well together.
"It can only be good for the club.
"You have to grow up quickly in the relegation fight. It is all a big learning curve and experience for us and I think it can only be good for the club.
"This has been one of the toughest seasons but we can take that on and all of us can use it and hopefully help the club move forward.
"The experienced lads have certainly helped - Shay (Given), Dunney (Richard Dunne), Warney (Stephen Warnock), Hutts (Alan Hutton) and Emile (Heskey) have been brilliant over the last couple of games."
Clark's goal certainly played its part in helping Villa get over the finish line, albeit thanks to a huge deflection off William Gallas.
But the Republic of Ireland international admits he would have taken a Villa goal from anyone - even his goalkeeper.
"I was definitely proud but we would have taken a goal from anyone," he added.
"Even if Shay had scored we would have been happy. As long as we got a point, and that's us near enough safe, we are all delighted with that.
"There was relief in the dressing room afterwards and all the boys were buzzing as well because Tottenham are a top team.
"There was a bit of pressure on before the game and all the lads have shown a great attitude in the last few weeks, especially against Tottenham to put in a great performance to get a point."