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May 27, 2013

Given confirms Villa exit

Shay Given believes he still has a Premier League future after confirming he intends to leave Aston Villa this summer and bring an end to his frustrating time under Paul Lambert.

Given says his Villa disappointment is behind the decision
Shay Given made 125 appearances for the Republic of Ireland

The Republic of Ireland international has revealed he is on the look-out for a new start away from Villa Park after discussions with Lambert.

One possibility is a move to new Premier League club Hull City, with Steve Bruce eager to sign an experienced goalkeeper, but Given will have to take a substantial pay cut to kick start his career.

Given has three years remaining on the lucrative five-year contract he signed in 2011 when he joined the Midlands club from Manchester City.

The 37-year-old is currently earning £60,000 a week, which means that the remaining value of his contract is more than £9.3 million, which will complicate his exit strategy.

But he accepts that he needs to find regular first team football away from Villa after spending last season playing back up to Brad Guzan.

"I had a meeting with manager Paul Lambert. We both agreed that I should be playing first-team football. And that's not happening at Villa right now," Given said in his column in the Irish Sun.

"It's a relief to think about moving to a club where I can play first-team football, because I found it hugely frustrating sitting on the bench for most of the past season.

"Ideally, I'd like for that to be with another Premier League club, but nothing is guaranteed I suppose. I just want to be able to prove to people that I'm still a good goalkeeper."

It is understood that Villa may be willing accept Given moving on loan to offset a portion of his salary, but Villa would prefer a permanent transfer as they look to reduce the club's wage bill.

Given, who has admitted his disappointment at missing out on Wednesday's friendly with England, retired from international football post-Euro 2012 to concentrate on his club career.

He then expressed an interest in returning after Christmas when the ascension of Guzan rendered his original decision pointless, but Giovanni Trapattoni decided against recalling him, preferring instead to give David Forde his chance.

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