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By ESPN Staff

Agbonlahor hopes for Heskey

Gabriel Agbonlahor hopes Aston Villa will offer fellow striker Emile Heskey a new deal when his current contract runs out this summer.

• Villa contract talks on hold

Heskey has been at Villa for the past three and a half seasons and has been linked with a return to his first professional club Leicester.

Villa assistant boss Peter Grant has intimated talks with Heskey and any other out-of-contract player have been put on hold until the summer but Agbonlahor hopes the former England player can remain.

He said: "I would like Emile to stay. I think everyone would. He has great experience and still has great qualities.

"It's not my decision but I would definitely like Emile to stay. He has done a great job when he has come in. Emile is really dedicated with the way he trains and is respected for what he has done in the game and we are still learning off him.

"Do I think he will stay? It's hard to say. We'll just have to wait and see."

Heskey was restored to the Villa starting line-up for last weekend's Premier League clash at Arsenal.

With Darren Bent sidelined for the rest of the season, he is likely to have an important role to play, but Villa boss Alex McLeish has admitted he still has to bring down the wage bill and Heskey is believed to be one of Villa's highest earners.

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