Date: 8th October 2007 at 11:12am
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Oooh, a bit of gossip that I do like! The News Of The World, a bastion of football truth if ever I saw one (!) claim in a report by David Harrison, that Villa are looking to bid around £6million for ‘unsettled’ Liverpool left-back John Arne Riise.

Yes please, that’ll do VERY nicely.

The report claims Villa were close to the Norway international in the summer transfer window but were scuppered when Liverpool’s move for Gabriel ’57 Varieties’ fell through with Manchester United refusing to sell the Argentinean to their fierce rivals.

Not totally sure where the substance for this report comes in all honesty, they do admit Rafa Benitez won’t sell Riise unless they get a replacement.

Papers today are claiming that Martin O’Neill wants to secure on-loan keeper Scott Carson permanently from Liverpool. He said in The Sun “A loan can always be with a view to a permanent deal. If it goes very well, there is the possibility of the deal becoming permanent. But Liverpool might say ‘excuse me’ because he is their goalkeeper.”

Benitez it is claimed was unwilling to sell the highly rated keeper last summer but did agree to let Carson come out on loan to get first team football. However Carson has since hinted he’d consider a permanent move and one thing does seem for sure, he’ll not be happy to go back to Liverpool and be third or fourth choice. With Benitez under immense pressure following his pathetic squad rotation, who knows what will happen? Certainly a good few reports recently suggesting former Villa striker Peter Crouch might be on his way out as his place in the England team is under threat due to his lack of games.

John Arne Riise, Scott Carson permanently, a right-back and an accomplished striker all in January and we might just push for Europe this season. Hey, this management lark is so easy!