Date: 1st February 2009 at 11:43am
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Harry Pratt of the Daily Star Sunday has an ‘exclusive’ of a rumour that has already been about for a week or so, not quite sure how that makes his article an ‘exclusive’ but hey ho! According to the report Villa will bid £7million for Manchester City defender Micah Richards who has by his early career standards had a poor season which has seen him drop away from the England international scene. According to the report the drop in his England chances makes the move to Villa far more attractive as Martin O’Neill is building a good, young and English back-bone to the team and England manager Fabio Capello – who was at Villa Park yet again yesterday for our game against Wigan – has been quoted about the club and has certainly taken note of our players like Gabby Agbonlahor, Ashley Young and of course Gareth Barry. We also have Curtis Davies and Luke Young who could be soon knocking on the door as well as England U21’s most capped player James Milner.

Will we get Richards? Got to admit, I doubt it for one reason and one reason alone. Manchester City don’t need the money.

Whilst on the subject of Manchester City I do believe we’ll sign Daniel Sturridge on a free in the summer, unless we can tempt them to cash in now. Back to the point above, Manchester City don’t need the money! Also the other player we have been ‘strongly linked’ with, Michael Johnson is apparently wanted by Newcastle United as part of the deal that will see Toon hero and stalwart (whatever one of those is!) Shay Given move to Eastlands.

And finally a would we, could we, should we? According to the press Robbie Keane has again been totally dropped from the Liverpool squad as the fat Spanish waiter Rafa Benitez looks once again to want to cause a war and humiliate a player. According to the Mail On Sunday Spurs are willing to take him back at £15million. Should Villa not be in the mix for his signature? Hmmmm! Doubt it though, this is too close to a WOW signing and MON does things a different way – his way – and looking at the league, maybe we can’t argue that he might know what he is doing! That said, I’d LOVE to see Keano in a Villa shirt after missing out all those years ago when John Gregory having seen him several times, decided against the outlay whilst Keane was a Wolves player. As he explained later on, each time he saw Keane play he wasn’t impressing so he admitted – along with all the other Premiership managers – missed out on a gem. (That goes against the popular myth that Doug Ellis wouldn’t stump up the extra £500k required. In this case we sadly can’t blame old Dougy boy!

Forum thread: Click Here (as ever, threads can contain adult language).

Meanwhile Martin O’Neill is still hoping to bring in a signing or two. He says Randy has come over to see what can be done, that said he’d probably have been over to watch the game yesterday anyway wouldn’t he?

‘The chairman has flown in and we will see what materialises. We are all aware of where we stand at this moment and we will see if we can do something. If we can’t, we can’t. For the current squad to attack on all three fronts might be difficult. We need to be exceptionally lucky in terms of injuries.’

The transfer window closes on February 2 at 5pm. Will we see any new bodies in? Any last minute surprises? Stay tuned!