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Feb 27, 2012

Villa in ruins as Bent's season is over

Aston Villa striker Darren Bent is set to miss the rest of the season - and possibly Euro 2012 - after rupturing ankle ligaments.

• McLeish fears lengthy Bent lay-off
• Wigan 0-0 Villa: Bent injury mars stalemate

Bent, 28, sustained the injury during Villa's 0-0 draw with Wigan at the weekend, and afterwards boss Alex McLeish reported that the England international was "in agony".

He picked up the knock after landing awkwardly following a challenge from Latics defender Antolin Alcaraz.

With Bent out for up to three months, he must be considered a serious doubt for Euro 2012, which begins on June 8. He featured regularly for the national side under Fabio Capello, and was named in Stuart Pearce's squad for Wednesday's friendly against Netherlands.

Bent's absence represents a significant blow for Aston Villa, who are 15th in the Premier League and eight points from the relegation places. He has scored nine times in the league this season - Villa's second top scorer is Gabriel Agbonlahor, with five. Their most recent in-form striker was Robbie Keane but he has returned to Los Angeles Galaxy as his loan has finished, to leave McLeish bereft of options.

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