FC Dallas 0-2 Villa: Lambert verdict on Cole match absence
Paul Lambert on Joe Cole.
24th Jul 2014
FC Dallas 0-2 Villa: Lambert verdict on Cole match absence


Paul Lambert admitted he wasn't too concerned by the absence of Joe Cole from the win over FC Dallas.

Lambert revealed that the former Chelsea and Liverpool ace missed the clash with the MLS side due to a thigh injury picked up against Mansfield.

The manager said, however, that he fully expects Cole to be fit to face Stoke on August 16.

He said: "Joe has a little knock on his thigh. It's a minor knock.

"He will be touch and go for Saturday. I won't rush him.

"But I am not too concerned. I think Joe will be fine for the first day."

On the subject of injury, Lambert also spoke of his delight at the re-emergence of Charles N'Zogbia.

N'Zogbia missed the entire 2013-14 season with an achilles heel injury.

But he returned for pre-season - and scored a wondrous free-kick against FC Dallas in this 2-0 victory.

Lambert is delighted to see the Frenchman firing on all cylinders again.

He added: "It is great to see Charles come back after a lengthy spell out - it was a bad injury.

"He's come back in pre-season looking pretty sharp.

"I thought he was excellent against FC Dallas. I thought his goal was first-class. It was a well-taken goal.

"If he can stay injury-free, hopefully he will have a big season.

"He could have had another goal at the end too. But overall his contribution since he's been back has been very, very good. His goal was excellent. To come back the way he has is very pleasing."

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