• Premier League

Kozak suffers broken leg from Villa team-mate

ESPN staff
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Libor Kozak has scored four goals in nine starts for Villa © PA Photos
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Libor Kozak has been ruled out for the rest of the season at Aston Villa after breaking his leg in a training ground accident.

Kozak signed in the summer for £7 million - suffered the injury to his right leg after a collision with defender Ciaran Clark on Thursday morning.

Kozak was rushed to hospital and will undergo surgery to repair the broken leg on Friday. He is now set to miss the remainder of the season - which is likely to have a significant impact on Villa's plans for the transfer window.

Kozak has scored four goals in nine starts and six substitute appearances for Villa since arriving from Lazio on transfer deadline day in September.

"Kozak has got a bad one," Lambert said. "He's got a broken leg. It was just a nothing challenge and it's a massive blow. He takes knocks and never moans, he gets on with it.

"I thought it was a clash of boots at first. There was no noise from Libor at all. No-one knew what happened and then they saw it. It's a major blow. It was a tackle with Ciaran, just an innocuous tackle in the morning. There was nothing in it. No-one thought anything of it. "A group that didn't play at Sunderland trained and the ones that did just came in for a recovery day."

Questoned over whether Kozak's injury would affect Villa's plans in the January transfer window, the manager added: "The January thing is a nightmare window because the prices are inflated. There are one or two I identified before this had happened. It's a blow."

Villa issued a statement on the club's official website on Thursday night confirming Kozak's injury: "The club can confirm that Libor Kozak suffered a broken leg in training. He will undergo surgery on Friday and, regretfully, he will play no further part this season."

Meanwhile, Christian Benteke's agent has said it is "ridiculous" to think the Belgium international striker will leave Villa in January.

Both Juventus and Tottenham are reportedly chasing Benteke, 23, and are prepared to pay significantly more than the estimated £7 million Villa gave Genk for the forward's services in summer 2012.

However, speaking to footmercato.net, the former Standard Liege player's representative, Kismet Eris, said: "You have to be realistic. He played on New Year's Day, so to talk of him leaving is ridiculous. There's no question of him leaving at the moment. It wasn't planned at the start of the season, it's not planned now."

Benteke enjoyed a stunning start to life in the Premier League scoring 19 times in 34 games, but he has struck only four times in 15 top-flight outings this season.

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