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The Aston Villa boss admits to calling up the Sunderland and former Celtic gaffer occasionally for help as he aims to learn from his mistakes and become a better manager

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert admits he still seeks out the advice of Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill from time to time, despite the pair being Premier League rivals.

Lambert captained Celtic during O'Neill's tenure with the Scottish giants, winning three SPL titles, three Scottish Cups and reaching the Uefa Cup final in five seasons between 2000 and 2005.

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And the 43-year-old has revealed his former manager was instrumental in his decision to leave Norwich for Villa Park this summer.

“I phone the gaffer because he’s been in it longer than me and I always think if I could get a smudge of his success, just a little bit, I’ll be doing all right," he told the Birmingham Mail.

“There have been times when I’ve phoned him up for advice, and I spoke to him before I came.

“He said it is a brilliant club, with a massive fan base and never dissuaded me one bit. Not one iota.

“I think he had a good time here, had a lot of success and had the place absolutely rocking, so if I need help I’ll definitely give him a call.

“I don’t have any problem making mistakes – I just need to learn from them.

"There are certain times when I’ll need a bit of help and I’ll phone him up and ask ‘can you help’.”

Lambert's side is currently lying 16th in the Premier League after taking five points from seven games.

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