Houllier unveils scouting overhaul

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The Independent Football

Gerard Houllier is poised to expand the scope of Aston Villa's recruitment system after appointing Jeff Vetere as the club's new chief scout.

Houllier wants Vetere, who previously worked at Newcastle and Real Madrid and speaks seven languages, to set up a worldwide network to help Villa search out the best young talent both at home and abroad.



"We need to have a structure and somebody who has got a network," Houllier explained.



"It is good to have someone who knows that 'this one is at the end of his contract' or 'this one is available' or 'we should have a look at this one'.



"Some other clubs are far more equipped in terms of personnel for that."



Houllier revealed the spiralling cost of English talent is forcing teams to look farther afield in their efforts to seek out new players.



"Initially I prefer to have English players, but English players are usually more expensive than the rest," he said.



"If you look at teams like Bolton and Blackburn, they have players from everywhere in the world now so you need to have networks practically in all continents."



Discussing the qualities Vetere will bring to his new role, Houllier said: "He knows football inside out, he's got a lot of people and a good network.



"He can speak seven languages and now you need to have scouts that can travel. He will work closely to me.



"A lot of the people I interviewed were good, but the little details made all the difference."

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