Curtis Davies envisages having the ‘entourage’ on board with Aston Villa’s A-listers will enable them to swagger past Hamburg in tomorrow’s UEFA Cup tie.
The Villa defender is referring not just to the supporting cast manager Martin O’Neill has called upon to help his first-team regulars during the European competition.
Davies also means his DVD box set of Entourage, a television series about how a Tinseltown superstar interacts with his lesser known friends at glitzy engagements.
In the words of show creator, Doug Ellin: “Entourage works because it’s about male friendship. The Hollywood setting is entertaining, but it’s really about the relationship between these guys.
“Ultimately, the show’s theme is friendship. The characters may have the bling, but they’re grounded guys, who look out for each other.”
Quite fitting therefore that Davies should choose an American drama about the togetherness of rich young men as his preferred viewing for today’s trip to Germany.
Especially as the former West Bromwich Albion centre-back cites the belief in the Villa dressing room as the reason for their UEFA Cup success so far.
“We have to believe that we can beat anybody in the UEFA because if we don’t believe that there’s no point being in the competition,” said Davies.
“We are a good team, we’ve played against the top teams in this country and not done too badly this season so far.
“So, hopefully, when it does come to the European games, people will be in a little bit of fear of us. That’s what I came to Villa for – to play in Europe. I’m hoping I can play in the game.
“I don’t know which way the manager’s going to go with selection, whether we’ll go all out to win the group or whether we’re going to rest people to keep them fit for the weekend game. Either way, I’m sure whatever team we put out will be a strong team. I came here to play in these games so if I’m named in the team I’ll be delighted.”
Villa’s hectic schedule will see them fly to Hamburg later today in preparation for tomorrow evening’s final Group F game against Martin Jol’s Bundesliga team.
O’Neill’s side will then return to England in the early hours of Thursday morning before boarding the team coach for a Friday night stay ahead of Saturday’s Premier League match at West Ham.
Davies insists the camaraderie in the claret and blue camp helps the players cope with the frantic flow of fixtures, although he accepts that he and his team-mates also appreciate their own space.
“It’s strange,” added Davies. “We stay at a hotel for a home game, next thing we’re going away and have got to give our passports in.
“Then we’re coming back and driving away to a hotel again. It’s a bit fast and furious I guess, but it’s good and we all enjoy it.
“It’s a bit awkward when you go all the way over to somewhere and you don’t play. But at the end of the day it’s part of playing in Europe and it’s the best place you can be and as long as we’re there I’m going to be happy.
“We stay in our own rooms luckily. If you’re going to be away that much it’s good that you have your own space because, as much as you get on with lads, you might end up falling out with your best mate if you’re with him too much.
“Lads can go into each other’s rooms and do what they want, and a lot of us have got DVD series and things like that.
“I’ve been watching The Shield, it’s just a cop drama, but I’ve finished now. I’m going to have to start on something new. I think Entourage is the next thing I’m going to watch.”