Midfielder Chris Herd was today ruled out for the remainder of the season with a foot injury which means he will play no part in Aston Villa's bid to beat the drop.
Herd has aggravated a fracture in his right foot with the club’s medical staff set to assess whether he will need to undergo surgery to solve the problem.
The 23-year-old Aussie has not featured for the claret and blues since the 2-2 draw with Swansea on New Year’s Day having struggled to return from the injury.
And Herd revealed his frustration at being forced to watch Villa's Premier League survival battle from the sidelines.
He said: “It’s pretty disappointing. I was looking forward to playing a part in trying to help us stay in the Premier League. It’s pretty gutting.
“These things happen in football and you have to just get on with it, stay positive and work on getting back to fitness.
“I was really hoping to be involved against Manchester City the other week but the foot just got sore again and it’s a blow which I will just have to deal with.
“I’d love to be out there trying to do my bit for the club. But the boys are showing great fight and have given themselves a huge chance of staying up.”
The injury also means Herd has been ruled out of Australia’s forthcoming World Cup qualifier with Oman on March 26.
Herd, who is also eligible to play for Scotland through his father, has yet to play for the country of his birth having pulled out of a number of squads in the past through injury.
But the player himself insisted he is "totally committed" to Australia and remains desperate to win his first cap for the Socceroos in the near future.
He said: “I am totally committed to hopefully one day playing for Australia. Injuries haven’t helped me when I have been named in squads and I’ll be cheering the boys on against Oman in what is a very important game.
“Hopefully, I will get my chance at some stage because it’s a huge ambition of mine to play for my country. Luck has been against me a little bit and I have had to pull out of squads.”Subscribe to our Newsletter