1. ITV Report

Ankle Injury rules out Darren Bent for rest of season

Darren Bent in action for Aston Villa Photo: PA

The striker's worst fears were confirmed with a visit to a top ankle specialist in London.

It also means he is doubtful for England the Euro 2012 finals in Poland and the Ukraine.

Bent's injury gives Aston Villa a potential striker crisis only Gabriel Agbonlahor and Emile Heskey - who have both suffered injury problems of their own in recent weeks - at his disposal for the rest of the season.

Bent suffered the setback during Saturday's goalless Barclays Premier League encounter with Wigan at the DW Stadium when he appeared to catch his ankle in the surface.

The Villa striker, aged 28, has averaged approximately one goal every two games for Villa since he was signed for a club record £18 million move from Sunderland in January 2011

Bent's injury is a major concern for England although they can still call on a posse of other potential candidates for the Euro 2012 finals.

Speaking on Twitter, Darren Bent expressed his disappointment.

One possible option would be to recall England Under-21 striker Nathan Delfouneso from a loan spell at Leicester but he has struggled to make an impact with Villa.

A statement from Aston Villa says the England striker will undergo further tests next week.

"Darren Bent has undergone scans and he has seen a top ankle specialist in London. He faces up to 12 weeks on the sidelines having ruptured ankle ligaments in his left foot in the game against Wigan and he is unlikely to play again this season. Darren will undergo a further examination in seven days to determine the need for an operation."

– Aston Villa FC

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