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Lambert Backs Benteke


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Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert insists he has no concerns over Christian Benteke's ongoing goal drought.

The Belgium striker netted 23 times in his first Premier League season and, despite his six-game goalless run drawing criticism, Lambert retains complete faith in his star man.

Speaking ahead of Saturday's clash with Sunderland, the Scot said of the 22-year-old: "I don't have any concerns whatsoever. Even if he's not scoring he's still a handful, Christian

"He'll come through it. I said to him the other day 'you won't play every single game where you score every single goal'. He'll be fine. I know exactly what he's offering to the team so I don't worry about him.

"If you can show me one striker who scores in every game, every minute, then I'll look at it. There's no such thing. I don't have a problem.

"I'm not getting involved in comparing him to other strikers. I know the value he has to me and I'll let other people surmise how Christian Benteke rates."

Looking ahead to welcoming the Black Cats to Villa Park, with Uruguayan Gus Poyet now in charge of the rock-bottom Wearsiders, Lambert added: "It's hard to judge because Gus has only been there for a few weeks and you're never quite sure. You don't know the lads he's got there.

"They've had a hard start. The last time we played them we won pretty convincingly at that time and everything we hit went in.

"We're certainly playing well enough to go and win but we'll have to wait and see how Sunderland are.

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