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Manager on Monday: Lambert gives verdict on Bertrand debut
Paul Lambert on Ryan Bertrand.
20th Jan 2014
Manager on Monday: Lambert gives verdict on Bertrand debut


Brown

Paul Lambert believes Ryan Bertrand will be a "big-time player" for Villa this season.

Lambert was thrilled with the contribution of Bertrand as he excelled at left-back in the 2-2 draw with Liverpool.

Despite a lack of match action, Bertrand kept winger Raheem Sterling quiet for long periods of the rip-roaring game.

Bertrand only joined Villa on Friday but produced the kind of performance that led Lambert to pursue him in the first place.

He said: "Bertrand was excellent. He is a big-time player.

"He has won the best tournament in club football and there was no doubt about throwing him in.

"He has played in big-time games in front of big crowds. He was outstanding for us.

"I just thought he was incredible in the match. He hasn't played in a while but his performance was excellent.

"He has real quality - you can see that. He knows what it's all about. He is a terrific footballer and a really good lad too."

If Lambert was thrilled with the defensive display of his newboy, he was also heartened by the attacking play of a couple of stalwarts - Christian Benteke and Gabby Agbonlahor.

He added: "Benteke was excellent. He looked great. He looked back to his own self.

"And I don't think there's a quicker player than Agbonlahor down the sides. He is fantastic.

"When Agbonlahor is on that sort of form with that speed, he is fantastic.

"That speed in the modern game is fantastic and he has it in abundance.

"I thought those two were excellent."

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