Exclusive: Robinson tips Aston Villa fringe player to provide 'Huge boost' in relegation battle

Paul Robinson tipped Aston Villa defender James Chester to be vital in the club’s relegation battle this season.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Laura O’Leary, the ex-Tottenham keeper claimed the centre-back returning from injury would provide the Villans with a huge boost.

Chester made his first appearance for the senior side this season in the 5-0 win over Liverpool on Tuesday to complete his return from injury.

Robinson explained when you consider the 30-year-old’s impressive character as well as his experience than it was great for everyone at Villa Park to see him back in action.

When asked if Chester is an asset who will be vital in the second half of the season given the club are in a relegation battle, Robinson told Football Insider: “Well yeah of course.

“To have someone like him come back into your team, I mean to play through the pain last season until Mings arrived says a lot.

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“It’s funny now as Mings is out injured and he’s coming back in.

“James Chester is an experienced international, I think it was a great night for everybody at Villa Park to see him come back after not playing for so long.

“I think it shows the character of a player, whether it’s sensible or not, to play with a knee injury or play through the pain barrier as when you consider he was out for 11 months after that, it kind of shows the discomfort he was in.

“So to have a player with that commitment who can be an integral part of his squad coming back is going to be a huge boost for Villa.”

Chester previously admitted that he damaged his knee “indefinitely” after playing through the pain for the Villans last season.

The former Wales international has been at Villa Park since joining the Villans from West Bromwich Albion in 2016 but his contract is due to expire at the end of the season.

In other Aston Villa news, the latest on the future of Wednesday night hero Jonathan Kodjia can be REVEALED.