Aston Villa boss Lambert optimistic of speedy Benteke recovery

The Belgian striker was withdrawn against Norwich after suffering a hip injury that could keep him sidelined for six weeks, though his manager thinks he may return sooner
Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert is optimistic injured striker Christian Benteke can return to action sooner than was originally diagnosed.

The Belgium international suffered a hip injury during his side’s 1-0 win over Norwich that Lambert stated would keep him out for “six weeks or so”, but now appears on track to make a recovery in time for the Villans' home game against Tottenham on October 20 that follows the international break.

"He is doing great. I think he will be back quicker. We'll have to wait and see," Lambert told reporters.

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"We've two games before the international break, which has probably come at the right time for him and for us.

"The worst scenario was he was going to be out for a considerable period of time, but the way he is progressing, everybody is pretty happy with him."

The former Norwich boss believes the injury may be a result of Benteke’s packed schedule in recent years, with the 22-year-old practically an ever-present for both club and country.

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

"The amount of games he's had here, and playing for the national team, never gave him that breathing space.

"He never mentioned he was fatigued or anything, he just kept on going. It's the first time he's been injured since I've been here, but hopefully, as I've said, it's not too bad."