Tim Sherwood: What we know each time Christian Benteke plays

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood has talked up Christian Benteke's ability to terrorise a defence.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood told talkSPORT what he and his team can be sure of each time Christian Benteke leads the club’s frontline.

The Belgian has been in revitalised form since Sherwood came in as manager, grabbing eight goals across all competitions in his last six matches.

His form could ultimately be the main reason Villa stay in the Premier League and Sherwood feels he creates benefits for the team when he utilises his natural assets in attack.

“He’s nicked goals and we know he’s always going to be a problem for two centre backs. We try to get the ball into him early, but we also mix things up and pass the ball through midfield as well,” said Sherwood.

The biggest natural advantage that Benteke has is his strength. He uses it effectively to back into opposition defenders, with a good burst of pace, which means he can also hover on the shoulder.

Defenders are reluctant to go tight to him, because he has that strength needed to get the better of any defender in a straight up duel.

When he intimidates a defence, it pushes the opposition backline a little deeper and creates space in front of the back four for others flooding forward to exploit.

Fabian Delph, Jack Grealish, Tom Cleverley and others all need that extra yard of space to be effective and it’s something, which Benteke regularly creates for them.

He has that ability as a single striker to keep both opposition centre backs occupied, which frees up an extra man in midfield allowing Aston Villa to control games more effectively.

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