Christian Benteke has had a mini revival under new manager Tim Sherwood, who joined Aston Villa back in February following the departure of Paul Lambert.
Christian Benteke arrived at Villa Park in August 2012 for £7million on a four year deal and made a good impression by scoring on his debut. By the end of his first campaign the forward had scored 19 times, beating Dwight Yorke’s previous record for most league goals scored in a season by an Aston Villa player.
His next season was less successful, and was predominantly marred by injuries, particularly a ruptured achilles tendon which ruled him out for six months and meant he unfortunately was unavailable for the Belgian national side at the 2014 World Cup.
This current campaign didn’t start well, with Benteke slow off the mark and scoring only twice in the first half of the season. It took Benteke until March before he scored his third goal of what had been a difficult and disappointing season for both himself and his team mates.
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Villa finally fired manager Paul Lambert and ex-Tottenham manager Tim Sherwood was brought in with the task of turning the sinking club’s fortunes around. His first official match ended in defeat, but within a month he had notched up his first win against West Midland’s rivals West Bromwich Albion, a game in which Benteke scored a last minute penalty.
Now in his last six league fixtures he has scored an impressive eight goals, including a hat-trick against Queen’s Park Rangers, to help inspire his team mates to start climbing the table.
Aston Villa are still not out of trouble, sitting down in 15th and only six points above the relegation zone. Though with the bottom three or four teams having a much greater mountain to climb, Tim Sherwood’s men should be making another appearance in the Premier League next season.
Villa will need their main striker to be firing on all cylinders for their FA Cup semi-final match against Liverpool on Sunday afternoon. Although the Merseysiders are the hot favourites, Aston Villa can cause an upset if they play at their very best and Benteke can continue his rich vein of form.
After a difficult start to the season, Benteke has regained his form and he owes a lot of thanks to Tim Sherwood. They may only just survive the drop and go no further in the FA Cup but, Benteke should relish his time playing at Wembley in a competition that has dumped out harder to beat teams a lot quicker than his own.
With the undeniable quality he has previously shown for club and country, his poor displays earlier in the year appear to have only been a blip and if the Belgian continues to listen to his wise manager, who has rejuvenated other player’s careers, then next season he’ll be back scoring goals for fun like he was went he first arrived in the Premier League.