Fulham are lining up a bid to sign Aston Villa forward Darren Bent in the January transfer window, according to the Daily Mirror.

The England striker was left on the bench for the 1-1 draw with Norwich at Villa Park.

Bent came on after 69 minutes on Saturday, but has been left in limbo over his Villa future after boss Paul Lambert offered him no explanations for stripping him of the club captaincy or dropping him for recent games.

Fulham will now look to take advantage of the situation by launching a £12million bid for Bent in January. It remains to be seen whether Villa would be prepared to take such a big hit on 28-year-old Bent after paying Sunderland £24m for his services.

Fulham boss Martin Jol is eager to bolster his striking options and is a big fan of Bent, having been manager of Tottenham when the England international moved to White Hart Lane.

“If your club wants to be top 10, you need strikers such as Darren Bent, who’ll score 15-20 goals a season,” said Jol.