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Villa v Man City: Lambert hopeful of speedier Benteke return

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Villa v Man City: Lambert hopeful of speedier Benteke return


Paul Lambert says Christian Benteke could be back quicker than expected after admitting the Belgian forward "is doing great" with his recuperation from a hip flexor injury.

Benteke had a scan on the injury he suffered in Saturday's win at Norwich and was expected to be out for up to six weeks.

But Lambert revealed the 22-year-old has a chance of making a speedier recovery.

Villa have Barclays Premier League matches against Manchester City and Hull on the horizon before a break for the next rounds of international fixtures starting on October 11.

And Lambert believes the international break may fall at the right time for his leading goalscorer.

"He is doing great and I think he will be back quicker," said the manager.

"He is doing really fine now and seems a lot happier within himself.

"We just have to wait and see. We've got two games before the international break.

"The international break has probably come at the right time for him and for us and he is doing great at the minute.

"The worst fear was that he was going to be out for considerable time but the way he is progressing, I think everybody is pretty happy."

It is the first time Benteke has been sidelined since arriving from Genk and Lambert praised the terrific endurance the forward has shown over the last 12 months.

He had already racked up five appearances for Genk in 2012-13 before going on to play 34 times for Villa and featuring regularly for Belgium.

"He played a lot of games with Genk before he actually joined us so he never really had much of a break," added Lambert.

"The amount of games here and then with the national team, it never really gave him that breathing space.

"He never really mentioned that he was fatigued or anything. He just kept on going.

"It is the first injury I've seen him with since he's been here but hopefully it's not too bad."

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AVFC Official
By @AVFCOfficial 26th September 2013
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