Good news this morning that Sky Sports understands that Newcastle are well in the lead to sign Aston Villa’s Stephen Ireland.
Stephen Ireland – on his way to Newcastle – hope so
There are a number of Premier League clubs keen to sign the 24 year-old, which is hardly surprising given his pedigree, and of course there is absolutely no future for him at Aston Villa, since Frenchman Gerard Houllier joined the club as manager, after Stephen was signed by then manager Martin O’Neill.
Sky Sports are saying that Newcastle are now believed to be in advanced talks with Villa over a loan deal, and of course Alan Pardew mentioned that Derek LLambias had been negotiating for the player over the weekend.
Ireland is thought to be on close to £70K/week at Villa, and how much Newcastle play of his wages is a big piece of the negotiations.
Newcastle are hopeful they can agree a deal this week.
If Stephen signed soon, he could even join the lads in Portugal this week — wonder if that’s a big enough incentive? Nice bit of sun and all that. 😀
Newcastle were also close to getting Sebastien Larsson earlier this month from Birmingham, so we have to hope the club are successful in arranging a loan deal for this excellent play-maker.
The loan deal will also come with a transfer fee, as to how much Newcastle would have to pay in the summer, if the club wanted to make the deal permanent.
A loan deal is a good deal for Newcastle, because they can then judge how good Ireland is, and also of course Stephen will be playing his socks off presumably, to get a good deal at the famous Newcastle club.
Stephen joined Manchester City in 2005 and played 170 times for the club with 23 goals, before joining Aston Villa last August, where he appeared 12 times and Houllier has him currently training with the Reserves.
We assume Gerrard doesn’t like him, for some reason, and the former Liverpool and Lyon manager has a few of the first reamers training with either the Reserves or the Youth Side.
It reminds us of Ruud Gullit, who in 1999 had Rob Lee training with the Newcastle Youth team, before Ruud was finally fired and the great Bobby Robson entered the picture.
Strange people these football managers, sometimes.