Villa 3-2 Malaga verdict: Lambert hails attacking potential
Paul Lambert hailed Villa's goalscoring potential after they rounded off their pre-season programme with a bright attacking display against Champions League quarter-finalists Malaga.
Lambert felt his team were a major threat during an encouraging first period which saw them surge into a 3-0 lead against the La Liga outfit.
The Villa boss was also pleased to see Aleksandar Tonev and Jores Okore get 76 minutes under their belts after missing out on all of the previous domestic pre-season games.
"In the first half I thought we were fantastic," said Lambert.
"We looked a threat every time and we looked comfortable against a team who just missed out on beating Dortmund last season.
"You look at their level and the way their club was last season - there have been a lot of changes but it is still a club that was in the Champions League quarter-final.
"It is a mammoth result for us to beat a team of that calibre.
"Some of the football we played was excellent. It is normal in the second half that your level comes down a bit.
"The lads needed some game time. That is why I left it longer than normal.
"Okore and Tonev needed games. There are one or two short of match practice.
"It is hard playing friendlies because you are never really bang at it. No matter how much you try, it is hard to get up to that level. But now it is for real."
Lambert admits he has "a rough idea" about his team selection for next Saturday's Barclays Premier League opener at Arsenal.
But he will assess some of his players when they return from international duty at the end of the week.
The manager was also pleased to see Joe Bennett, Jordan Bowery and Marc Albrighton return to the squad although all three are still striving to boost their fitness.
"The lads have got international games so we've got to hope they come back fully fit then we've got to decide," added Lambert.
"You have a rough idea but we've got to get everybody fit from international duty.
"Those three lads are still short of minutes really because they've not really done much.
"It was a bonus to get Joe on. Marc is still a bit short. He started last Monday.
"Jordan has just come back this week as well. But it is pleasing that they are starting to come back."
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