We are currently trialling our new-look independent.co.uk website - please send any feedback to beta@independent.co.uk

Premier League

Richard Dunne eyes return to Aston Villa training following second operation


Aston Villa central defender Richard Dunne has set his sights on a return to training in two weeks after undergoing a second operation on his long-term groin problem.

Dunne has been sidelined since initially suffering the setback with the Republic of Ireland during their Euro 2012 campaign and has not played since.

But the 33-year-old, who is in the final year of his contract, is finally hoping there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Dunne told the Birmingham Mail: "The last operation I had seems to have really worked so I'm hopeful that I'll be back soon.

"I've set a few targets but I keep missing them.

"It's frustrating when I can do all the running and the rehab but not the final bit.

"But I'm hoping - fingers crossed - that I can start training in a couple of weeks.

"I've got to see the doctor and from there, hopefully it will be the all clear."

Dunne has endured a frustrating period with injuries during 2012 after suffering a broken collarbone which caused him to miss the final part of last season.

He said: "I've been lucky not to have too many injuries during my career but it's been almost seven months where I've not been fit."