Villa's Sanchez: I believe in Okore and Clark greatly

Aston Villa's Carlos Sanchez is happy with the side's current central defensive pairing.

Aston Villa summer signing Carlos Sanchez has praised Jores Okore and Ciaran Clark after the partnership the pair have struck up at the heart of the side's defence in recent weeks. 

Okore and Clark started this season as back-up choice for the club, but injuries have meant that Paul Lambert has had to select them in his team.

So far that has been a blessing in disguise, with the pair playing a vital part in the club's recent good form, which has seen them pick up two wins from their last three games and Sanchez was keen to pay tribute to his teammates today. 

"Ciaran and Jores were excellent against Southampton in their first match together and they have continued that form onwards into the other games," he said to the club's official site

"Both of the lads are very strong defenders. But their decision-making has been very clear too.

"I have great confidence in them. I believe in them greatly. These young guys have been superb for us.

"They have been terrific. I have been very impressed. Individually they have been excellent. But as a pair they have really stood out.

It is a partnership which has meant that Lambert now has a selection dilemma on his hands, with usual first-choice Ron Vlaar coming back to fitness.

Vlaar has become a key player for the side, but his route back into the first-team does appear blocked as things stand. 

Villa have conceded just three times in the five games that the duo have played together and breaking up their pairing would seem rather harsh. 

Sanchez, too, has played a vital role in this defensive solidarity with his displays in the centre of the pitch impressing.

He has adapted quickly since arriving from Elche this summer and his physical approach has caught the eye of all watchers. 

The Colombian will be hoping to continue his good form this weekend, with Villa preparing to face Manchester United. 

Register for ASTON VILLA team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch