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Reds ready to put 2014 behind them

Liverpool
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Bacuna relishing Villa challenge

New signing Leandro Bacuna has said Aston Villa fans will not be short-changed by his impact on the Premier League - and he is counting off the days until the start of the season.

The Netherlands under-21 international midfielder is relishing the challenge of making an impression with Paul Lambert's overhauled squad.

"It's a new beginning for me, and a new step," he told Villa's official website. "I'm looking forward to being part of this young, hungry team.

"The manager is trying to create a new generation, to build something here and improve us all as players. I'm up for the challenge.

"I always fight for the team. If you do that, you get a lot of supporters behind you. That's a huge thing.

"We will get the opportunity and we need to show him [Lambert] what we can do. You have to show the very best of yourself, and that's what I'm looking to do."

Bacuna, signed earlier this month on a three-year contract from his hometown club Groningen, is one of five arrivals so far this summer at Villa. Jores Okore, Antonio Luna, Aleksandar Tonev and Niklas Helenius have also been recruited.

Young Norwich keeper Joe Steer is in line to become a sixth, and competition for places is likely to be keen.

"I am fully focused," Bacuna added. "I can't wait to get started because it's a good group of players. I'm looking forward to meeting all of them and starting this journey together."

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