O'Neill angered by Milner exit talk
Tuesday 20 April 2010
Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill has dismissed speculation linking England midfielder James Milner with a £24m summer move to Manchester City.
Milner, who has two years left on his Villa contract, has also been tipped as a target for Manchester United.
But Villa, who paid £12m to sign Milner from Newcastle United two years ago, plan to open contract talks with him at the end of the season.
Commenting on the Milner rumours, O'Neill said: "It is irksome at this stage of the season.
"It doesn't do anyone any favours particularly because the player has had a fantastic time and is enjoying his football immensely here.
"He has had a really brilliant time, particularly since moving into the middle of midfield and I am delighted for him.
"James is still under contract with us and it's a case of dampening fires that weren't there in the first place.
"We want the best players to stay here at Aston Villa so we can keep the momentum going.
"But I have kind of accepted it now. If it is not James it will be Ashley Young and if it is not Ashley it might be Richard Dunne and then someone else the following week."
O'Neill also denied he knew of any contact from City about the prospect of Milner moving to Eastlands in the summer.
"It has got ridiculous now and I can categorically say that I have not heard anything from Manchester City," he said.
"I spoke to my chief executive late yesterday evening and he never mentioned it so I assume they have not been in touch with him either.
"You almost get the impression that stories are put in there to kind of upset you at this stage of the season.
"It was interesting to hear Arsene Wenger talking about Barcelona and having to rebuff stories about someone who was under contract at Arsenal.
"They are having to get Barcelona to make statements about them not coming after a player."
Latest in Sport
The muddy truth of the Christmas Truce game
Premier League: Burnley vs Liverpool match preview
Alexis Sanchez video: Turns out the Arsenal forward is brilliant at playing the piano too
Premier League: Chelsea vs West Ham match preview
Sir Alex Ferguson on Jose Mourinho: 'He's good looking, speaks five languages, wins everything - it's unfair'
- 1 Planes go hybrid-electric in important step to greener flight
- 2 Antonio Martin shooting: Mayor says there should be 'no comparison' to Ferguson
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'