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By ESPN Staff

McAllister: No mutiny in Villa ranks

Gary McAllister has rubbished speculation there is a players' mutiny taking place at Aston Villa after reports emerged that they were unhappy at rules enforced by manager Gerard Houllier, including the banning of mobile phones.

Villa's assistant boss McAllister denied claims Houllier had made draconian changes to the club rule book and also dismissed reports that players were unable to speak to Villa owner-chairman Randy Lerner without Houllier's permission.

McAllister told BBC Sport: ''I don't think there's any mutiny here. There's been little arguments here and there but nothing outside the realms of what happens at most clubs.

''The facts are most football clubs have a rule book which is set by the PFA [Professional Footballers' Association] and apart from little tweaks here and there, it's a standard rule book.

''Mobile phones aren't switched on inside the building and Gerard had this rule when I was a player at Liverpool. It's to encourage people to speak to each other rather than be texting and phoning. But when they get to the car park, it's fine.

''I've also never worked under a chairman (Lerner) who's more accommodating. I've probably spoken to him more than I've spoken to any other chairman.''

McAllister also denied suggestions that Houllier was losing his appetite for the task ahead.

He said: ''Gerard Houllier is a proven manager. I'm working under somebody who's had to make big decisions, won things. I don't think he does anything by half measures. One of the things he said to me when he asked me to join him is that there's an opportunity to get a project going.

''It's a club that's got most things in place - the training ground, the stadium, the fans, a squad that's done well in the past - and he's here to try to take it to the next level, to pick up a trophy.''

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