Speaking to the Evening Telegraph, Riccardo Calder has discussed how he can break into Villa’s first-team after enjoying a productive loan spell with Dundee.
He said: “I was away on tour with the Villa first-team in the summer — that was like a little taster for me. Now I have that in my sights for when I return to Aston Villa. It’s put down a marker for me. Now I know exactly what I have to achieve to get to where I want to be. I’ve got to take things step by step, though.”
This temporary spell with the Dark Blues gives Calder, 19, his first chance on competitive football at a senior level.
He is a consistent selection in Villa’s Under-21 squad, and has been in matchday squads before in both the Premier League and FA Cup, but with Dundee it is expected that Calder will play week-in-week-out.
The youngster is a natural left-sided midfielder, but he is also able to play in both central midfield and at left-back, and this loan spell will give him a chance to impress watching Villa scouts.
He went on tour with the Birmingham-based club in pre-season, and clearly Tim Sherwood believes he is ready to make the step up to senior football.
The youngster himself is aware that this loan spell could open up a route into the first-team at Villa Park, and if he enjoys a good season with Dundee, it could be that Calder is part of Sherwood’s set-up next term.