Villa Defender Suffers New Injury Setback

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Aston Villa full-back Phil King has suffered another injury setback and will be out of action for at least four more weeks.

The former Sheffield Wednesday player has torn a thigh muscle for a second time in a training ground five-a-side encounter.

King had originally sustained the same injury in a pre-season friendly at Lincoln in early August and that side-lined him for six weeks.

That had been his first appearance in nine months since damaging his cruciate ligament while on loan to West Bromwich Albion last December.

King, best remembered at Villa for his crucial penalty in the UEFA Cup shoot-out win over Inter Milan two years ago, said: "It has been a nightmare time. I get fit and then something else happens.

"But I've got to try and remain positive and aim to be back playing first-team football by the Christmas-New Year period.

"I am going to need something like four weeks' more treatment and then it will be all about building up the general fitness and then the match fitness again.

"It's been a tough time and I know it will be hard to get in the side at left-back with Alan Wright and Steve Staunton here, but I've not lost faith in my ability.

"I'm 28 and they say those should be the peak years of my career and I'm determined to prove that I can do the business and that I'm still a Premier League player."

But King accepts that his long-term future might lie away from Villa and he is currently on a week-to-week contract.

Villa will also be concerned by the news that striker Dwight Yorke is double-booked on both sides of the Atlantic for two matches in the space of three days next week.

Trinidad and Tobago have given permission for Yorke to play for Aston Villa in a Coca-Cola Cup-tie at Leeds on Wednesday as long as he joins their squad for a World Cup qualifier on Friday.

Villa officials are now drawing up flight plans to get their 24-year-old striker to Central America in time for his country's fixture in Guatemala.

Instead of missing two Villa matches, Yorke is only ruled out of the FA Premiership game against Sunderland at Roker Park on Saturday October 26.

Secretary Steve Stride explained that the arrangement had been reached in August when Yorke and manager Brian Little went through Trinidad's World Cup schedule.

Stride said: "Dwight then explained his situation to the people back home and they were very sympathetic. They accepted there would be times like next week when he will have to fly out on Thursday."

Yorke played in a 1-1 draw against Guatemala in Port of Spain on October 16, and he is due to appear in two more matches in the CONCACAF group next month.

Fortunately for Villa, the first game in the USA on November 10 coincides with an official international break in the FA Premiership programme, but the return meeting with America clashes with a fixture at Coventry on November 23.