Benteke edging closer to return
Christian Benteke is closing in on an Aston Villa return as he continues his quick recovery from an Achilles injury.
The striker has handed the club a major boost and it is thought he could return to action by the end of next month.
He has been out since April after rupturing his Achilles, which forced him to miss Belgium's World Cup campaign.
Benteke was expected to be sidelined until Christmas but is on course to return sooner along with fellow striker Libor Kozak, who is also nearing fitness after breaking his leg in January.
"Touch wood everything is OK with their rehab and in the next few weeks they will be back," said boss Paul Lambert, ahead of Saturday's Barclays Premier League visit of Newcastle.
"Hopefully, all being right, with a bit of luck if Christian doesn't have any major hiccups he will be back soon.
"I can't put a 100 per cent time limit on it but he is doing really well. To get him back training is important, first and foremost.
"At the minute the guy is doing great. He is looking in great shape, the medical people deserve a lot of credit for getting him in shape.
"I don't want to put pressure on him but having him and Kozak back will be a big boost."