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Villa v Swansea player preview: Benteke to bring extra dimension

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Villa v Swansea player preview: Benteke to bring extra dimension

By Dan Harrison

Paul Lambert has hailed Christian Benteke as a "big presence" who will bring an extra dimension to Villa's attack.

Lambert believes the Belgian powerhouse will compliment the club's other forwards with his tremendous physical strength.

Deadline day signing Benteke could be in line for his Villa debut against Swansea today after impressing in his national side's 1-1 draw against Croatia in midweek.

And Lambert believes the 21-year-old can hit the ground running in the Barclays Premier League.

"He is a presence. I watched him the other night and he was excellent," said Lambert.

"You look at that Belgium team at the minute and they are really, really good. So if you can hold your own in that company then he'll do alright.

"He is only 21 so he will make mistakes like everybody else but he'll be something different that we haven't got.

"I think he'll put himself about. He's physically strong, the big guy. He's a big lad and he's got a good technique about him.

"The times I've watched him he's been in physical battles before and he's never ducked away from it, so he's a good player for somebody as young as he is.

"We needed that presence up top - something different, something unpredictable that could get us up the pitch.

"But he is only 21 years of age, you have got to remember that.

"You don't want to put pressure on him or an expectation level.

"He came in and trained really well. I think he'll do really fine."

Lambert also feels Benteke could be the perfect foil for the likes of Darren Bent, Gabby Agbonlahor and Andreas Weimann.

But he insists the former Genk hitman will need support from his strike partners.

"He will take a lot of pressure off the team," added Lambert.

"How he teams up with Darren - if he can get the flick-on then fine.

"He will take up a lot of people's time because of the size of him.

"But I don't want to place too much pressure on him.

"He will need help from Darren as well. It won't just be he is coming in to help Darren."

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AVFC Official
By @AVFCOfficial 15th September 2012
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