Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert hopes to rush back Ron Vlaar for the New Year's Day clash at Sunderland.

Vlaar has been missing with a calf injury and, during his absence, Lambert's team have failed to win in five.

The manager said: "We've got one fit centre-half (Nathan Baker) at the moment.

"We will see how Ron is and then decide if we have to adjust. He's doing a lot better but sometimes it's needs-must."

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