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The Irish goalkeeper was left out of the Villans' side to face Newcastle on Sunday afternoon following a high-profile blunder during defeat to Everton in their last outing

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert defended his decision to omit veteran goalkeeper Shay Given from the Villans' starting line-up after drawing with Newcastle.

Second-choice shot-stopper Brad Guzan was given the nod on Sunday afternoon as the Midlands side earned their first point of the Premier League season in a 1-1 result.

After the game, the Scot revealed that he had spoken to the 36-year-old and explained that he had made the call to exclude him in the team's best interests.

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"I just try and pick a team that I think can win a game, that's all I can do," Lambert told Sky Sports.

"Shay is a brilliant goalkeeper, there are no two ways about it, and we had a chat the other day. I just thought it was the right decision for the football club."

The former Norwich City boss also expressed his delight at gaining a point at the Sports Direct Arena, reserving particular praise for the Villans' young players.

"I thought we were excellent throughout the game," he enthused.

"It's a really tough place to get anything and some of the football was excellent. We were worthy of something, that's for sure.

"I thought the youngsters were excellent, their enthusiasm for the game was excellent and there are some really talented footballers [in our ranks]."

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