Writer: J P Fear
Date:Thursday May 17 2007
Lil Lee, where you going?!
Lee Hendrie is looking to get his career back on track but doesn't know where he will end up. As he approaches his 30th Birthday, the (nearly) former Villa midfielder has yet to sort out this future. His contract at Villa is up at the end of May and it is obvious he isn't in Martin O'Neill's plans.
Hendrie said: 'I've still no idea what is happening. I've got a meeting at the end of this week with my agent and things should become clearer tomorrow. I know a few clubs are interested, but nothing concrete has been said to me as yet. So, I suppose I am still in the same situation. People have been talking to clubs on my behalf. Stoke City have mentioned about signing permanently, and I have to speak to them about it. If possible of course I would like to stay in the Premiership.'
'There was interest from abroad earlier this season and it is now a case of seeing if that interest still stands. I've said to my agent, I don't want you to come back to me with this or that club 'might' be interested - I want to know for sure which ones want me. I'd prefer to stay in the midlands also, but if not then I have no problem in moving. Stoke were good to me. I got some niggling injuries towards the end of my stay, it is a different league down there in the Championship.'
Meanwhile, he has also set out his testimonial plans. Says a lot that it is being done by an external company really! I'm sure if he was doing a Niall Quinn and donating all the money to charity more fans would be interested but as only a percentage will go to Villa's club charity Acorns Children Hospice, I'm not so sure.
Anyway, there is a testimonial dinner on July 4.
The official site says The dinner at the Holte Suite, Villa Park, is an occasion for fans to thank Hendrie for his dedication to the club who he has been signed to for almost 13 years.
Thank him for what? Feck me a bus, most of us work 45 years and get a bloody watch just at the point we shouldn't have to time watch, 13 years of underachieving picking up top money and making a massive splash in the press for the wrong reasons doesn't leave much space where I'd want to thank him, no offence like! Ho hum, I'm sure will think of something. Sounds a decent night with Sir Bobby, former Villa managers etc.
Hendrie said: 'It looks like it will be a great night and the names that will be there makes it even more exciting. Sir Bobby will be an excellent speaker, he is a great guy and so well respected in the game. All the lads have got behind me with this, and it is not just the Villa squad. There will be friends there who I have played with in the past who are coming to support me. I have got two daughters so it means something to support a children's charity.'
In that case, give all the money to charity?
A table for 10 is available at £850. Guests can also book a table to include an Aston Villa player for £1200. There are also corporate sponsorship packages available which include an exclusive pre-dinner champagne reception with all the personalities. The evening starts at 7pm on Wednesday July 4. http://www.vultd.co.uk/ or call 0871 8715300
Date:Thursday May 17 2007
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