Given aware of Guzan threat
Villa keeper taking nothing for granted in battle for starting berth
Last Updated: August 16, 2012 11:05am
Shay Given: Hoping to keep Brad Guzan on the sidelines at Villa Park
Shay Given acknowledges that there is no guarantee that he will be Aston Villa's number one this season, with Brad Guzan providing considerable competition.
Given has been first-choice at Villa Park since completing a switch from Manchester City in 2011.
In an effort to ensure that he remains at the front of the keeping queue, the 36-year-old Irishman has announced his retirement from international football.
He believes being in a position to focus his full attention on club matters will help to keep him ahead of highly-rated American Guzan in the Villa pecking order.
"Brad is pushing hard for a place in the team," said Given.
"It's up to me hopefully to keep him out but he's a fantastic goalkeeper and the fans love him here as well and that comes from his performances.
"He's a top goalkeeper and it's important we've got that competition in all positions across the park and we definitely have that in the goalkeeping department.
"Of course you need a challenge and there's a new manager as well, so you've got to impress him and show him that you deserve to be in the team.
"The manager is a very passionate guy and he wants everybody to be on top of their game both in training and in games. There's a real buzz in training and real excitement around the place."