Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke has been ruled out until the New Year and will miss a hectic festive period.
The Belgian missed Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at Stoke, having not been named in the squad despite travelling to the Britannia Stadium.
Benteke has struggled in front of goal since his return from a hip flexor injury in October, and has now gone 11 hours and 25 minutes without finding the back of the net.
Doubts have been raised over the 23-year-old’s fitness over recent weeks and it now seems that he will miss a busy festive period for Villa.
Benteke is expected to return in the New Year.