Aston Villa's Fabian Delph happy with improved fitness and form this season

Fabian Delph: Midfielder says improved form down to tough fitness regime from Paul Lambert

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Fabian Delph is grateful for being pushed to the limits by Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert and his medical staff in a bid to overcome his long-term injury problems.

The 23-year-old midfielder has played every minute of his side's nine Premier League matches so far this season, in stark contrast to being sidelined by fitness issues for long stretches of his four years at the club.

Such is the former Leeds player's form that there is talk of a new contract in the offing, but Delph credits Villa manager Paul Lambert and his medical staff for his good form this term.

"When I originally came back from injury I wasn't training every day and for someone like me I think I have to train every day," he told the Birmingham Mail. "When Paul Lambert came I thought I would have been training twice a week.

"But he was like 'no chance - you're training every day'. He got the medical team to push me on. I don't think I've missed a training session since he's been here.

"He got me back training every day. We've had good fitness coaches throughout my time here. I've taken bits from every one of them and managed to just do my strength work and be consistent with that. It seems to be working.

"I feel a lot stronger, a lot more confident in my physical shape. It's blood, sweat and tears in the gym, putting in strength and conditioning work.

"There's nothing complicated, just good old hard work."