Remi Garde discusses Aston Villa's goalkeeping situation while praising Mark Bunn

Villa Park Clear

The 31-year-old kept Villa in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Leicester City with a first-half penalty save from Riyad Mahrez.

Aston Villa manager Remi Garde has applauded goalkeeper Mark Bunn for his man-of-the-match performance in Saturday’s 1-1 home draw with Premier League leaders Leicester City.

Bunn, 31, made his second straight top-flight start over the under-fire Brad Guzan for the visit of Claudio Ranieri’s men and justified his selection with a strong showing between the posts to help earn the hosts a share of the points.

The former Norwich City man not only kept out Riyad Mahrez’s 33rd-minute penalty to prevent his side from going 2-0 down after Shinji Okazaki had given Leicester the lead just five minutes earlier, but he also impressed with his handling and command of his area.

Speaking to Villa’s official website about the summer signing's performance after the match, Garde said: “I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Mark Bunn because if he hadn't saved the penalty, probably 2-0 down would have been too difficult.

“He kept us in the game. To be 1-0 down against Leicester - very difficult to beat and score against - I think it's a good performance from my team.”

Bunn previously made his first Premier League appearance since May 2013 in Tuesday night’s 1-0 win over Crystal Palace at Villa Park, and while he was forced into just one straightforward save during the match, he did seem to bring much more confidence to the defence than the benched Guzan.

The US international has been struggling for form for the best part of 18 months, and while Garde did not give a definite answer about the No. 1 situation following the Leicester draw, his comments suggested that the job is now Bunn’s to lose.

“I think if you look at the previous week, Mark Bunn did well,” The Frenchman added. “But it's not definitive. At this moment, I feel Mark probably gives a little bit more confidence to the team.

“What he did today was good as well.”

Whether Bunn can be a long-term option for Villa is debatable at his point given both his age and lack of recent top-flight exposure, but regardless of his own starting credentials, the future looks bleak for Guzan’s career in the Midlands.

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