Aston Villa deadline day signing Tiago Ilori admits he is "relieved" to be in a position to finally play in the Premier League after being overlooked by Liverpool for two years. Ilori moved to Merseyside from Sporting Lisbon in 2013 but it yet to make a senior appearance for the Reds.
Ilori moved to Villa Park on the final day of the summer transfer window on a season-long loan, with a view to joining the Midlands club on a permanent deal. The 22-year-old has spent the last two campaigns at Granada and Bordeaux but is ready for the challenge of the English top flight.
"It was all last-minute so I'm relieved that I had such a good option and I'm very happy to be here," the Liverpool defender told AVTV. "I can't say I know everything about Aston Villa's history but I know that they're a very stable team.
"It's always been a dream of mine to play in the Premier League and that's why I signed for Liverpool in the first place. I'm very happy that Aston Villa are hopefully going to give me that chance."
Villa boss Tim Sherwood is unsure whether Ilori will feature against Leicester upon the resumption of the Premier League. The youngster impressed for Portugal during the Under-21 European Championships as part of a back four which conceded just once from open play in five matches as his side finished as runners-up.
However, Sherwood says that despite Liverpool identifying Ilori as a defender, he wants to use the player in midfield and adapt his position like Emre Can was moved from midfield to defence last term. "I see him like an Emre Can," he said according to the club's official website. He's been successful playing in every position.
"A lot of people say that if you don't nail down one position, it's detrimental to your career. I don't believe that. I believe it gives you the chance to play more minutes. I think he could be an exceptional player. He's not there yet. But he's in the right place."