Writer: J P Fear
Date:Tuesday July 10 2007
A couple of players we have been regularly linked with have moved to other clubs.
West Bromwich Albion player Diomansy Kamara has moved to Fulham for £6million.
Another Baggies man could be on the move, this time midfielder Jason Koumas who according to many paper reports was 'strongly' linked to Villa. Wrong again! WBA have accepted a bid of around £5.3million from Wigan.
And another constant link that split the Villa fans on the message boards was to Liverpool striker Craig Bellamy. Well, it seems those reports were also wide of the mark as he has joined West Ham. Either that, or one other whisper I heard was that we wanted him but he didn't want us. Not sure and to be fair, don't particularly care on that issue, he might have been good for us but it was a big IF for him to a) stay fit b) behave c) not upset the dressing room and d) there is no d but just three options seemed a bit short. e) see d.
So there you are, a few smallish names linked to us and now not coming. So who will the press come up with now? Jermain Defoe from Spurs again. Well, looking on the bright side, at least they have stopped winding up the Londoners suggesting we are about to sign Robbie Keane and this link probably makes more sense as the White Hart Lane outfit have now got Keane, Dimitar Berbatov (a very fine striker and one the big boys missed out on right royally) and this summers big signing Darren Bent. Defoe spent a good part of last season on the bench and with a 3rd big striker on the books, surely something has to give?
Whether Defoe would be an improvement for us I'm not totally sure, he seems a great player to me but that would then push out Luke Moore who I would love to see develop, not to mention Gabriel Agbonlahor who looks far sharper up front than on the wing. Also, without the lure of European football, it is harder to sell us to players at clubs already in the Uefa or Champions League.
Another being linked again is Charlton right back Luke Young. Now I'm easily confused at the best of times, so with Luke Young, Ashley Young and Luke Moore, I'm basically going to be buggered next season! Reports suggest that Young wants to quit The Valley and obviously, following the sale of Aaron Hughes and the injury problems of Mark Delaney (who is now out of contract anyway) we don't have a recognised right-back at the club, unless Olof Mellberg is going to be shifted from the centre?
According to a report by Kevin Affleck in the Croydon Guardian, Villa are at the front of the queue for Harry Forrester, a 15-year-old England Youth international currently at Watford. The report says the attacking midfielder has rejected a 2-year scholarship at the Hornets and will instead sign for Villa.
Other links seem to be without foundation on sites that just put down names of teams to get more views, so I think we'll call it a day on those above!
Lets just hope the speculation dies down and we start to get an influx of new boys in!
O'Neill said recently in several papers and the official site: “Now the Reo Coker deal has been done and dusted, I can push it to one side. I now want to put all my energy into getting other new players.”
Date:Tuesday July 10 2007
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