England Under-21 international James Milner today left Newcastle United, the club he has been with for four years, after manager Bobby Robson bought him from Leeds United for £4M.
Kevin Keegan – cannot be happy at the events of last two days
Milner passed a medical at Aston Villa this morning, and has signed for the Midlands club for a reported £9M transfer fee.
He becomes Aston Villa’s eight summer signing, as he completes his switch to the Midlands club just two days after his transfer request of last Wednesday (20th Aug) was revealed by the Tyneside club.
You have to believe something was already in the works when Milner made his transfer request 9 days ago, and presumably Newcastle refused to increase his wages, at their reported meeting on Wednesday.
Keegan had made it very clear that he didn’t even want to talk about losing Milner, yet that’s what’s happened. Who’s in control of players at Newcastle?
It’s hard to think that Ashley can now hold Keegan responsible for the playing side if he doesn’t allow Kevin control of who comes and goes at the club.
Wages was reported to have been Milner’s chief grievance at Newcastle, even though he just signed an improved contract last summer for four years.
Milner spent the 2005-06 season on loan at Aston Villa, and had a good season, scoring three goals in 33 League and cup appearances. He has signed a four year deal, but contracts hardly seem to mean anything these days.
The 22-year-old passed a medical Bodymoor Heath this morning.
So he’s gone, and it must worry fans that Newcastle are willing to let some of their best players go, against their manager’s wishes, if they can get a decent price for them – shades of what we did back in the 1980s – and that is not good.
Mike Ashley and Dennis Wise now have until Monday at midnight to show Newcastle fans their priorities are in the right place, that they will support manager Kevin Keegan, and sign at least four good players by then.
We’ll be waiting.
If they can do that, it will go a long way to calming Newcastle fans, 67% of whom wanted Newcastle to give the lad an increased wage, in our recent poll, to keep him at the club.