Paul Lambert backs 'magic' Carles Gil to lift Aston Villa

Paul Lambert has hailed the impact of Carles Gil at Aston Villa and believes he can be their inspiration.

The 22-year-old midfielder signed from Valencia on Jan. 13 and made a bright second-half debut in last week's 2-0 defeat to Liverpool.

Gil could start in Sunday's FA Cup fourth-round tie at home to Bournemouth and Lambert has already seen his quality against the Reds.

"To an extent it was a magic performance," said Lambert. "Carles gives us something we don't have but to come on and play the way he did in a game of that magnitude lifted the whole stadium and it was great.

"He is an excellent footballer, has a low centre of gravity and has an excellent touch, a typical Spanish type of player.

"Technically he's first class and he has only been here a few days so there'll be a lot more to come from him.

"He's excellent and we let him play with a bit of freedom to go and create and he is really enjoying his football. We don't want to put too much expectancy on him but he has fitted in excellently for us."

Gabby Agbonlahor and Joe Cole are both doubts with hamstring injuries ahead of the cup visit of the Championship leaders.