Express & Star

Diego Carlos gets a runout for Aston Villa

Villa defender Diego Carlos took another step towards his Premier League return with an extended run out in yesterday’s behind closed doors friendly with Bristol Rovers.


The Brazilian centre-back, who ruptured his Achilles in just his second Villa appearance following a £26million move from Sevilla last summer, played 67 minutes in the match at Bodymoor Heath.

Carlos, named on the bench for Villa’s last two Premier League matches as Unai Emery eases him back into the first-team picture, will be aiming for a competitive return before the end of the season.

Midfielder Leander Dendoncker, who has missed the last three matches with a serious hand injury, was also in action at Bodymoor as a Villa team supplemented by several youth team players were beaten 3-1 by their League One opponents.

Teenage striker Omari Kellyman was the man on target for the hosts late on.