Aston Villa: Conor Hourihane says they are looking good after John Terry's arrival
Aston Villa midfielder Conor Hourihane says the arrival of John Terry at the Championship club will be a huge help in their "need to produce" next season.
"JT coming in, you couldn't get any better for this level," the 26-year-old Irishman told BBC WM 95.6.
"It will give everyone a boost. That certainly looked like that was the case out in our training camp in Portugal."
Despite a decent start when Steve Bruce took over as manager last October, Villa ultimately finished only 13th.
And, at the Championship's second-best supported club, in their second season back in the second tier, Hourihane is well aware of the renewed pressure on Bruce's Villa to perform better this time round.
2016-17 season 'fizzled out a little bit'
"I got a taster of that from January to the end of the season," says Hourihane, who was signed by Bruce from Barnsley in the January transfer window for an undisclosed seven-figure fee.
"It kind of fizzled out a little bit with some poor results but things are looking good now. We have some good players in this squad for this level. There'll be more leaving and more coming in but we'll be ready to go.
"We had a long, hard 10 days out in Portugal, where we did a lot of running and hard graft. With a strong pre-season and some good names coming though the door, ultimately, we need to produce.
"We need to do better away from home. If you look at Newcastle and Brighton who got promoted last season both had very good away form. And that's something we need to improve on."
Meanwhile, Villa winger Carles Gil, 24, has rejoined La Liga side Deportivo La Coruna on a second season-long loan. The January 2015 signing made 34 Villa appearances in 18 months before first being loaned to Deportivo in 2016.
And still they turn up at Villa Park . . .
Villa's average league attendance last season was 32,107 - the second-best in the Championship, bettered only by champions Newcastle United (51,106).
Conor Hourihane was talking to BBC WM's Mark Regan.