Writer: J P Fear
Date:Tuesday July 28 2009
Well, with our servers the last few days being as slow as the transfer market, at least I've not missed anything. I thought the moment Vital Villa crashed that we'd be making a world class signing... evidently not.... not yet...!
Martin O'Neill has again said people should stay calm and that players will be incoming.
On the official site the Villa boss said: 'We are obviously going to improve the team. If we are going to try and improve this season then we need some players in. I will be expecting that to happen. I am hopeful we will have players coming into the football club. We are some numbers down but we are looking to put that right.'
He also hints strongly that a new defender could be on the way after the exit of Zat Knight to Bolton saying: 'I'm not in the habit of letting people go if I didn't think we could do something. I would not be getting overly concerned at the moment. We have a number of things we are working on and I'm hoping they will bear fruit in the not-too-distant future.'
So what rumours have been about?
The Daily Mirror, saying that Leeds have put a £8million price tag on 19-year-old midfielder Fabian Delph who has been linked to Spurs and Villa.
Leeds manager Simon Grayson says it will be difficult to stand in the England U21's way if a Premier League club does bid for him. Quoted in the Yorkshire Post he said: 'We're not talking about him going to a League One team - we're talking about top Premier League clubs coming in for him. The hardest thing for us would be to accept a bid in the first place, but also to deny the player the chance to go to that level.'
The Daily Mail say that Villa are after Blackburn's £6m-rated defender Stephen Warnock. It has been implied to me that this is unlikely to be the case!
Another who we have been linked with, albeit more strongly to the pink and blues of West Ham, might not be returning to the Premiership at all if the Daily Telegraph are to be believed. They say striker Eidur Gudjohnsen may be looking elsewhere if he does move from Barcelona this summer.
The Daily Mail claim that Villa, Everton and Sunderland are all after 28-year-old Standard Liege midfielder Milan Jovanovic. The Serbian has apparently said he wants to play in the Premiership.
The Times claim that with Spurs buying Peter Crouch from Pompey that Villa will now move for Darren Bent. 2+2=5 or does this make sense!? Sunderland are being strongly linked but this report suggests Villa may also go for him as the England striker prefers a move to us.
Apparently Bent was on the plane to go to China with the rest of the squad and then had to have his baggage off-loaded as a deal was close to being struck for the player with Sunderland. Jermaine Jenas however was on the plane!
Still more links for Villa to Portsmouth defender Sylvain Distin who according to the Daily Express will fly out to Spain this week to seal the deal. Must admit, with MON letter Zat go, I'd be surprised if this rumour didn't turn out to be true. Only possible sticking point according to this report is that Pompey want £4m and Villa are offering £2.5m for the 31-year-old.
Strange one here! Former Villa player Zat Knight says he can understand why Villa want Distin! 'I think he is one of the best in the Premier League. He has done well wherever he has been, both at Manchester City and Portsmouth. He is a big, strong lad. He is quick and is experienced in the Premier League so I can understand why the club are going for people like him. He is a fine professional. I don’t know him too well, just from playing against him, but he seems like a good lad.'
So there you have it! Oh and another... getting bored of this one now! Apparently Sunderland also want Distin and are prepared to pay Pompey what they want. Oh and the Mirror today say that Pompey have offered him a new deal to fend off interest (reports the other day said he didn't want to have a new deal at Fratton Park).
Date:Tuesday July 28 2009
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