Lambert explains Bent demotion

18 September 2012 01:20
Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert says he stripped Darren Bent of the captain's armband because he wants him to concentrate on scoring goals.

Lambert has rung the changes at Villa Park since succeeding Alex McLeish at the helm over the summer, reshuffling the first team and bringing in eight new signings. One of those newcomers, former Feyenoord centre-back Ron Vlaar, has been named as skipper in place of Bent and contributed what the manager described as a "colossal" performance in Saturday's 2-0 win over in-form Swansea.

Bent is yet to find the back of the net in the Premier League this season and Lambert believes relieving him of his captaincy duties will help him rediscover his scoring touch.

He said: "I just wanted to give Darren a break, I just wanted him to concentrate on scoring goals. I think Darren at Newcastle the other week and against Swansea was excellent.

"He is playing well, but I thought I would change it and let him just concentrate on scoring goals." The manager added: "Vlaar was amazing, I thought he was colossal.

"He's not a young kid, he's not 21, he has been at a huge football club himself and is a top player."

New-boys Matthew Lowton and Christian Benteke were both on target to down Swansea on Saturday as Villa secured their first home league win since March. Lambert believes the younger players in his squad will be crucial this season due to their fearlessness on the pitch.

He added: "The young players play without fear. If you play with fear then mistakes happen, but their enthusiasm and their hunger will drive them on. "I never worry. It's my decision and I'll live or die by it. I've got no fear or trepidation whatsoever about them playing - none.

"I'm hoping it'll happen here, the crowd will run with it, they'll see lads giving everything they've got. "If I think they're good enough, I'll thrown them in."

Source: team_talk