Aston Villa insist there is 'no problem' with Darren Bent

The West Midlands club have denied reports that last seasons' top scorer could leave after reports of a breakdown in communication between him and manager Paul Lambert
Aston Villa have moved to quash speculation that Darren Bent could leave the club in the January transfer window, insisting reports of a row with manager Paul Lambert are untrue.

The 28-year-old came off the bench to snatch a late equaliser in the 1-1 draw with Midlands rivals West Brom at Villa Park, but confessed he was looking to speak to his manager after revealing his discontent at being placed among the substitutes.

13/1 Darren Bent is 13/1 with Bet365 to score the first goal in an Aston Villa win over Fulham on Saturday
Bent has seen his chances limited under Lambert, with Andreas Weimann, Christian Benteke and Gabriel Agbonlahor above the former Tottenham man in the pecking order at Villa Park. However, the club have denied claims that he could leave anytime soon.

"There is not a problem," a club spokesman told the Daily Express.

"The manager has explained why he has not selected Darren for the last two games and has said his door is open if the player wants to discuss the matter."

Bent, who cost Aston Villa a club-record fee of £24 million in 2011 when he moved from Premier League side Sunderland, was the club's top goalscorer last season with nine goals in 22 appearances as they narrowly avoided relegation.

Reports have suggested that if Bent does decide to leave Villa Park, Liverpool could be a possible destination for the England international. 

The Reds currently face a striker crisis after losing Fabio Borini to a broken metatarsal injury, leaving Luis Suarez as the only recognised forward available to manager Brendan Rodgers at Anfield.