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Page last updated at 13:51 GMT, Friday, 5 November 2010

Aston Villa striker John Carew misses Fulham game

Aston Villa's John Carew (left)
Carew (left) was Villa's top scorer in the 2009-10 season

Aston Villa have suffered a further injury blow with the news that striker John Carew has torn a calf muscle.

Carew had been set to deputise for the injured Emile Heskey in Saturday's game at Fulham but the Norwegian could be out for up to four weeks.

Villa boss Gerard Houllier said: "He picked up an injury in training on Thursday. He had a scan and there is a slight tear of his calf."

Heskey is also likely to be missing for a month with medial ligament damage.

The club are desperately short of forward options, with Gabriel Agbonlahor having only just returned to light training after a groin operation.

"Gabby is still in the recovery period although for the first time today he took part in training, in light ball work," said Houllier.

Former England striker Heskey also picked up his injury while training on Wednesday.

South Warwickshire Villain

"Having Heskey out is a big blow because in the six games he played, he scored three goals and created some chances as well. His work rate was phenomenal," added Houllier.

"Emile has the operation last night and it was successful but he will need another three or four weeks."

Houllier confirmed that Nathan Delfouneso will make his first Premier League start after 14 appearances as a substitute during the past three seasons.

He said: "It is an ideal opportunity for the young Nathan to step up. He will definitely be the main striker.

"Young players don't stay young all their lives. At some stage they will grow and get mature. But their career usually starts when there is an opportunity.

"I know Nathan is not a newcomer because he has already played under Martin O'Neill so he knows the Premier League.

"But to him maybe it is an ideal opportunity to put his footprint on things."

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see also
Fulham 1-1 Aston Villa
06 Nov 10 |  Premier League
Heskey knee injury blow for Villa
04 Nov 10 |  Aston Villa
Villa suffer fresh Petrov setback
02 Nov 10 |  Aston Villa

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