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Villa boss Lambert explains missing new signings

None of Aston Villa's deadline-week signings appeared in Sunday's 1-1 draw at Newcastle, with Joe Bennett carrying a knock he picked up in training, Jordan Bowery an unused substitute and Christian Benteke and Ashley Westwood failing to register in time, reports the Birmingham Mail. Chris Herd (thigh strain) and Fabian Delph (knee) were also missing, while Karim El Ahmadi limped off late on with an ankle problem.

"He's got a slight knock, Joe, and hopefully he'll be okay and he'll give us great balance with the way he plays the game," said Villa boss Paul Lambert.

"Benteke will come in and he's only 21, that's what people will have to remember, and he'll be a handful for teams and Ashley Westwood is going to be a right top player.

"Chris has picked up a thigh strain, he did it on Saturday so that's a bit of a blow.

"Fabian hurt his knee against Tranmere, so we couldn't risk him. But hopefully he'll be back as well.

"What happens is your national boys are away with their teams anyway so there's no point in worrying about it.

"The break is there for everybody. We'll get Christian Benteke back from the Belgian team and the other two lads coming back will integrate with the group as well.

"You just run with it, it's there set in stone that the break's there."

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Dave Williams

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