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Villa v Ipswich: Lambert vows to ease pressure on talisman Benteke

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Villa v Ipswich: Lambert vows to ease pressure on talisman Benteke


Paul Lambert admits he will handle Christian Benteke with care to avoid putting too much pressure on the Belgian striker.

Benteke has been thrust into the spotlight after making a terrific impact since arriving from Genk.

The 22-year-old has featured in every game since joining the club in September and has been Villa's main attacking threat with nine goals in all competitions.

If he features in this afternoon's FA Cup third round tie against Ipswich, it will be his 22nd consecutive appearance.

Injuries to Darren Bent and Gabby Agbonlahor in recent weeks have meant Benteke and Andreas Weimann have had to shoulder the goalscoring burden.

Lambert admits he would like to rest his summer signing at some stage to ease the pressure on him.

"I'd like to rest him I think because he's played a lot of games," said the Villa boss.

"He's played a lot of games for Belgium and his season with Genk had started before ourselves.

"I'd like to rest him at some point. With Gabby and even Darren out injured it has not been great.

"Charles has also been out. So there's a lot of injuries on that front."

Lambert has always been mindful of the expectation levels that have been placed on his young forward.

He says Benteke has dealt with the pressure well since moving to Villa.

"I've said before there should not be an expectancy level on him," he added.

"He's only 22. The way he's been performing it's unfair to put every bit of expectancy on him."

Pick up match tickets for the FA Cup clash with Ipswich.



By @AVFCOfficial 5th January 2013
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