Paul Lambert: 'Charles N'Zogbia a long way from returning'

Charles N'Zogbia of Aston Villa is challenged by Giorgos Karagounis and Eyong Enoh of Fulham during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Fulham at Villa Park on April 13, 2013
© Getty Images
Paul Lambert insists that Charles N'Zogbia is not closing in on a return to the Aston Villa squad.

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert has claimed that Charles N'Zogbia is not closing in on a return from a long-term injury.

N'Zogbia has been out of action since rupturing his Achilles on holiday last summer, and Lambert has dismissed suggestions that he is choosing not to bring the French winger back into the first-team squad.

"It's just in my opinion he isn't ready for training in the first team at the minute," the Scot told members of the media. "It's too much for him.

"He's still really short of match fitness. You can do all the training you want, you can work with the fitness lads, but for this level of football you've got to get yourself up to top level.

"I don't think he's ready for anything like that at the minute."

N'Zogbia joined Villa from Wigan Athletic for £9.5m in the summer of 2011.

Manchester United Manager David Moyes heads for the dressing room at half-time during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford on March 16, 2014
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