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The 28-year-old is puzzled by the fact that he has only made four appearances since the turn of the year, compared to 23 from the start of the season until the end of 2012

Brett Holman has admitted that he is puzzled about why Paul Lambert, the Aston Villa manager, has decided to drop him from the squad.

The Australian has made 27 appearances for Villa this season, but only four of those have been since the turn of the year, coming on as a substitute.

Holman told reporters of his confusion at his apparent fall from favour with former Norwich boss Lambert.

“I honestly don’t think I’ve done anything different after Christmas. It’s frustrating and something I have to deal with,” he said.

“Every player wants to play. When you’re training every day, training hard, it’s disappointing when you’re not playing.

“You’d have to ask the coach why. He’s gone for a different way but I can’t give you an answer. But I haven’t really spoken to him a lot. The first half of the season was really good. It’s always a learning situation when you’re in a completely different competition and type of football to what I was used to in Holland.

"I can’t say anything bad about it – I was playing just about every game, except for one. After Christmas, it’s hit a bit of a rocky road. But I’ve had my ups and downs throughout my career and this is another down. I’ve been around for a little bit to know you’ve got to keep your head down and you’ll always get your chance.”

Holman's last start for the club was over two months ago, when Aston Villa lost 1-0 to fellow relegation-battlers Southampton.

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