Date: 24th January 2019 at 8:00am
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With Aston Villa head coach Dean Smith giving a more positive injury update this week as we prepare for the Championship clash at the weekend with Ipswich Town and former manager Paul Lambert, although the Jack Grealish update will have taken the headlines – Mile Jedinak is finally back on the path to fitness.

The Australian beard has been back in training for a week now as he steps up his return after a lengthy spell on the sidelines – the 34-year-old last featured for us back at the end of September in the 1-1 draw with Bristol City.

With the Aussie international back in training, Smith gave him 60 minutes in a behind closed doors friendly with Swindon Town earlier in the week and although it was a non-competitive behind closed doors job, Smith was pleased with what he saw.

“Mile got 60 minutes for us, which was good and he looked good. He’s been out for quite a while. He sat on the bench for us at Middlesbrough when he was struggling and it’s taken him a while to get to his period. It will be great to have someone of his experience and quality available.”

I certainly wouldn’t expect to see Jedinak involved this week given the length of time he’s been out and whilst it might not be a favoured position for many fans, he does give cover at centre-half and he would add some bite to a midfield which is light.

If Smith can get the best out of him, we know he can be a positive for us, just not when he’s being shoehorned around to keep him in the starting XI.

Full interview below.

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