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O'Neill moves to bring Pompey's Distin to Villa

Aston Villa have made a bid for Portsmouth defender Sylvain Distin, who has been linked with a move away from Fratton Park this summer amid the uncertainty surrounding the club's future.

The French centre-back has seen team-mates Peter Crouch and Glen Johnson seal big-money moves to Tottenham and Liverpool respectively, and it has been claimed that Villa have made an approach for the 31-year-old, who joined the south coast club on a free transfer from Manchester City in 2007.

Pompey have previously stated that Distin remains part of manager Paul Hart's plans and that they intend to retain his services, but seem unable to keep hold of their prized players as a takeover at the club stalls.

Both Sunderland and Everton are on the look-out for a new centre-back, with the Toffees thought to be favourites following the £24m departure of Joleon Lescott to Manchester City.

However, as Villa seek to fill the void left by the retired Martin Laursen, the club have appeared to steal a march on the competition by bidding a reported £6m.

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