Martin Laursen reflects on early Aston Villa days

Aston Villa's Martin Laursen in action

The ex Aston Villa defender was surprised by something in particular

Aston Villa's Martin Laursen in action

Speaking to the club's official website, former Aston Villa man Martin Laursen has admitted that he did not expect the intensity of the Premier League to be as tough as it was.

The Danish defender joined the Villans in 2004 and went on to establish himself as a firm fan favourite at Villa Park.

He joined from AC Milan after impressing for Denmark at Euro 2004, but injuries limited him to just 84 Premier League appearances across five years in the West Midlands.

Martin Laursen - Aston Villa celebrates his goal for 1-0 with James Milner

Given that his career had been divided between Denmark and Italy at that point, the 38-year-old's only experience of English football was through a television screen, and Laursen says that it was a real eye-opener for him.

He made his debut on a sun-soaked Villa Park for a 2-0 win over Southampton in August 2004, and Laursen admits that he had doubts over whether he could handle the intensity within the first half-hour of his bow.

Picture Supplied by Action Images

"It was strange for me because I hadn't known what to expect from the Premier League. I obviously knew it was going to be tough - and it certainly was," Laursen, who retired in 2009 due to unrelenting injuries, told Aston Villa's official website.

"I remember thinking after that opening half hour: 'I can't play 90 minutes every week like this.' But I came out after the break and it went well. I enjoyed the second half much more and I really got used to it."

General view of Paper planes on the pitch thrown by Aston Villa fans in protestGeneral view of Paper planes on the pitch thrown by Aston Villa fans in protest

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