Cahill pledges his future to Aston Villa

He said: “It is hard when you are injured at the start of the season and the lads have done so well. When you come back, you are down the bottom of the pecking order.

“As long as you perform well in the games you do play, that’s the only thing you can do. I kept getting told that my chance would come and it did.

“I thought I did quite well at Everton, and I was happy with that, and it was also good to keep another clean sheet at Wigan.”

Cahill added: “I love playing alongside Liam. I think he is a great defender, a great player, a great talker.

“I’ve played with him since I was small really so he knows my game and I know my game and I think that helps us out a lot. I want to try to emulate Liam. That is the most important thing. Liam has got about 80-odd appearances under his belt.

“I have always said you have never made it until you have made 200 appearances and performed at a good level consistently. That is my aim now.”