Villa star Fabian Delph picks Gerrard and Keane among childhood idols

Roy Keane Signing Autographs as Man Utd player

The Aston Villa midfielder picked some revered midfielders when discussing three players he most looked up to as a young player.

Talking to the Aston Villa website, England international Fabian Delph shed some light on the players he looked up to as a young player.

The 25-year-old burst onto the scene at Leeds as a young midfielder, featuring for the England Under-21 side when he was just 18-years-old.

And Delph certainly picked a trio of star names that he admired in his youth when he revealed that former Liverpool and England captain Steven Gerrard, Manchester United favourite Roy Keane and French legend Zinedine Zidane were the individuals that he most looked up to.

"I had a few when I was growing up," Delph admitted when discussing his heroes.

"I was a big fan of Steven Gerrard, Roy Keane and I also liked Zinedine Zidane."

Gerrard left Liverpool after 17 years this summer, and retired from England duty after the World Cup, meaning Delph never got to play with the 35-year-old.

Keane made his name during a 12-year spell at Manchester United, during which he helped the Red Devils become the strongest team in English football under Sir Alex Ferguson.

Both were renowned as tough tackling, combative midfield generals, much like Delph himself, although he appears a little less like former Juventus and Real Madrid star Zidane.

The Villa captain also discussed the international tournaments that he could remember watching in his youth, saying: "That would have been the 1998 World Cup in France although the first tournament I can remember watching was Euro 96."

Delph missed out on a squad place in Brazil last summer, 16 years after France won 3-0 against last year's hosts in the final in Paris, but has since become a vital part of Roy Hodgson's international setup.

He has also impressed under Tim Sherwood in the last few months of the 2014-15 season, and looks likely to take on the captain's armband on a permanent basis if Ron Vlaar leaves the club.

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