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Villa boss Lambert insists no rift with Ireland

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert has no issues with midfielder Stephen Ireland despite his lack of first-team action in recent weeks. Ireland's last action was in the Capital One Cup semi-final with Bradford nearly a month ago. But Lambert reiterated that his decision is based on footballing reasons.

He said: "I have to pick as squad that I think will benefit the football club. He (Ireland) has featured up until recently.

"It is my decision. Stephen has got a contract, I've had chats with him and we get on well."

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Dave Williams

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