Friedel not ready to quit yet

Aston Villa goalkeeper Brad Friedel has not set a date for hanging up his gloves, despite being 38 years old, and feels fitter than ever.

The American has proved himself to be one of the most consistent goalkeepers in the Premier League over the past decade and has had a new lease of life since joining Villa last summer.

Martin O’Neill has been delighted with Friedel’s performances since moving to the Midlands from Blackburn, with his veteran between the posts showing no sign of ageing.

Friedel has always said he will keep on playing until someone tells him otherwise and is hopeful of still being in the top flight at 40.

“I haven’t set a target for retirement – until I can’t play any more or someone tells me I can’t play any more,” he said.

“I’ll keep myself as fit as I can and if selected I’ll keep going.”

Friedel believes that only taking short breaks has been key to maintaining his fitness during close-seasons.

“I only take a week off of doing nothing,” he added. “I stay close with the strengthening and fitness coaches.

“But realistically you need a mental as well as a physical break from pounding your body.”