VLAAR NOT FAR FROM VILLA RE­TURN

Midweek Sport - - ON THE NOSE - By BREN­DAN McLOUGH­LIN

TAL­IS­MANIC skip­per Ron Vlaar hopes to hand As­ton Villa a ma­jor boost by re­turn­ing to ac­tion im­me­di­ately after the in­ter­na­tional break.

The Hol­land World Cup star has missed matches against Liver­pool, Arse­nal, Chelsea and Manch­ester City with a calf in­jury and has been ruled out of his coun­try’s Euro 2016 qual­i­fiers against Kaza­khstan and Ice­land.

Vlaar has man­aged just three ap­pear­ances for Paul Lam­bert’s team this sea­son, but hopes to be avail­able for the trip to Ever­ton on Satur­day week.

“My calf is im­prov­ing all the time, but I’ve al­ready re­signed my­self to miss­ing Hol­land’s next two qual­i­fiers,” said Vlaar, whose Villa fu­ture is un­cer­tain with his cur­rent deal ex­pir­ing next sum­mer.

“That would make the game against Ever­ton at Good­i­son Park my tar­get for a come­back.

“It’s so an­noy­ing to be miss­ing cru­cial games against the top sides.”

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