Bouma could return this year
Aston Villa defender Wilfred Bouma is expected to be out for four to six months after successful surgery on his dislocated right ankle.
The 30-year-old Dutchman suffered the horrific-looking injury in Villa's Intertoto Cup second-leg victory against Odense BK on Saturday.
Bouma underwent surgery yesterday, having the joint reset and a plate inserted.
Manager Martin O'Neill told the club's official website, www.avfc.co.uk: "The operation went very well and everybody, including Freddie (Bouma), is very optimistic he will make a rapid recovery.
"Freddie's in good spirits. It was a bad injury but with the level of treatment he's had and the post-operative prognosis we've been given, we're all hoping to see him back, perhaps sooner than everyone expected on Saturday night."
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