Date: 21st January 2019 at 6:00am
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Mile Jedinak is on the recovery trail for Aston Villa, with Dean Smith saying in a press conference that the midfielder is “on the road to getting back to fitness” after so much time spent on the sidelines. Jedinak has been out of action for nearly four months, playing his last game for Villa against Bristol City on September 28, 2018.

Smith said: “We have had Mile training from Monday, too. He’s on the road to getting back to fitness now after a few months out.”

The 34-year-old has only made nine Championship appearances this season and may struggle for games in the tail end of the campaign as he has stiff competition in midfield – Birkir Bjarnason, Glenn Whelan, John McGinn, Henri Lansbury and Conor Hourihane.

Jedinak has an uncertain future as he’s been linked with a return to Australia. He’s out of contract at Villa Park next summer and isn’t likely to be offered an extension. While a useful squad player, it’s hard to see Jedinak getting a game ahead of Bjarnason and McGinn, but Smith’s revelation is still good news.

Having more options in midfield means can only be a good thing, even if Jedinak doesn’t feature too much in the final few months of the season. Now back in training, he’ll be considerably short of match fitness so his return might be some time away.

Crippy Cooke’s previous article

Aston Villa midfielder ‘tweaked his hamstring’, forcing him to miss Hull City clash

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