Benteke is 'very important' to Aston Villa says Tim Sherwood
Aston Villa boss Tim Sherwood has told BBC Sport of the importance of Belgian target man Christian Benteke to the squad.
The interview was conducted after the transfer window slammed shut last night with Villa fans hearing the news that the 23-year-old would be staying in the Midlands for the foreseeable future.
Sources understand that Premier League side Liverpool, who were the favourites to sign the striker, did not table a bid for the former Genk man and Sherwood has now confirmed that Benteke is happy to stay with The Villains because of this.
Official bids from Napoli and AS Monaco were rejected by Aston Villa as they did not meet Sherwood's £23m valuation of the strong striker. The bids were thought to be in the region of £13m and £18m which both fell some way short of Villa's asking price.
Benteke, who picked up a minor injury in Aston Villa's Capital One Cup defeat to Leeds United, has scored four goals so far this term for his team in all competitions, with just three games played.
"I'll admit we're all relieved that Christian is still here. He obviously has ambition but this club has a lot of history and I really do believe that we can help him meet his ambition with this team in the near future.
Clearly he's very important to the team, and he's demonstrated that early on so far this season. He missed the loss against Norwich but with the international break coming up, he'll be back before the Stoke game.
He is still happy at this club. We've talked in great length over the past few weeks and he is going to give his all for us in this season. We want to keep him here for longer than that but we'll revisit the situation in the summer if he wishes to. For now, the matter is over as far as we're concerned."