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Villa v Newcastle: Boss happy with competition in forward ranks

Former Villa heroes support '7-in-Seven' cycle challenge FT: Villa 1-2 Newcastle - match report to follow
Villa v Newcastle: Boss happy with competition in forward ranks

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Paul Lambert says the arrival of Libor Kozak has created the sort of healthy competition he has been striving for.

Lambert now has a wealth of options in his forward ranks following the Czech Republic international's deadline day move from Lazio.

The Villa boss insists Kozak and his fellow strikers will thrive off each other as they compete for places in the front line.

Last season's Europa League top scorer joins Christian Benteke, Gabby Agbonlahor, Andreas Weimann, Nicklas Helenius and Jordan Bowery in Villa's burgeoning pool of attackers.

"It is about keeping everyone on their toes," said Lambert.

"You have got to have people that push each other to do well. "As soon as you stop looking over your shoulder as a footballer you become complacent. "

"You have got to keep playing with that little bit of fear that somebody might just come in and take your place."

Lambert has backed Kozak to work in tandem with top marksman Christian Benteke.

He believes the pair could combine to cause major problems to Barclays Premier League defences.

"I think the two of them could play with each other no problem," he added.

"They'll be a handful. I just felt that we needed another type like that - an experienced one.

"I need everybody - the 25 man squad - to perform."

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By @AVFCOfficial 14th September 2013