By Danny Wright
Steve Bruce is sweating over the fitness of both Henri Lansbury and Scott Hoghan ahead of Aston Villa’s meeting with Nottingham Forest at Villa Park on Saturday.
Both the midfielder and striker were forced off the pitch in Tuesday night’s Carabao Cup exit at the hands of Middlesbrough and may not be back in contention when the West Midlands side focuses their attention back on the Championship.
The Villains have three games in seven days, beginning on Saturday against Forest, and may have to do so without January signings Lansbury and Hogan due to differing injury problems.
“Henri has jarred his knee and Hogan has tweaked something in his foot,” said Bruce, as quoted by the Birmingham Mail.
Lansbury, 26, has been in and out of the Villa side this season and has failed to complete 90 minutes of a game in any competition since the opening day draw with Hull.
He has made five appearances across both the Championship and Carabao Cup, but his playing time has been limited due to fitness and form problems.
Hogan, 25, has likewise had issues with performances ever since he signed for Aston Villa from Brentford in January.
The striker is yet to find the net in the league this term and has only scored four goals in 23 appearances in all contests since he was snapped up by Bruce at the beginning of the year.
Villa need all players as fit as possible for their upcoming fixtures, especially in the league after a poor start saw Bruce come under intense pressure, so it is no doubt that having to worry over the first-team duo ahead of the meeting with Forest is a big blow to the club.
In other Aston Villa news, Ian Taylor has delivered his verdict on the loss against Middlesbrough.