For the first time in a while, the Aston Villa injury report headed into the weekend isn't too extensive. Certainly, the absence of Gary Gardner, Joe Bennett and possibly Gabby Agbonlahor will hamper Paul Lambert's choices. G iven what we've seen recently, however, the news is actually pretty good. Christian Benteke, Andi Weimann, Brad Guzan, Ciaran Clark, Antonio Luna, and Fabian Delph all seem ready to join the Aston Villa squad again. Weimann, Clark, Luna, and Delph were all ruled out for the last match that Villa played against Cardiff, but Guzan and Benteke both sustained injuries that became news during the international break.
Guzan, we finally know, hurt his ankle in the aforementioned Cardiff City match, and Benteke took a knock on the knee in a Belgium friendly against Colombia. Benteke further worried us all by limping off during Belgium training on Sunday, but everything appears alright with the striker. Guzan, too, doesn't seem to be badly off, given that Lambert is planning on playing him. That's a good thing, as people were tossing around the alternative of having Shay Given - who you may remember as the keeper that had a good half and then turned into a pile of fiery debris - play in net for Villa this week against West Brom.
With Luna and Clark back, Lambert should be able to not only put together a back line, but also have subs in case of (oh let's be honest, when) the stray mid-match injury. And Delph's return won't fix the midfield, but it should staunch the bleeding there that was causing so many of us angst.
Given what we know about who is available, who do you think Paul Lambert should pick as his starting XI on Monday? Let us know in the comments!