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Five Aside

Aston Villa could still sign Bradley

Michael Bradley could still join Aston Villa this summer despite his lack of first team football since joining the club on loan in January.

Bradley, a United States international, has started only one game and appeared once as a sub following his switch from Borussia Moenchengladbach at the turn of the year.

But Villa's assistant manager, Gary McAllister, who is in charge of first team affairs while manager Gerard Houllier recovers from illness, has suggested Bradley could yet be offered a permanent deal.

McAllister told the Express and Star: "Michael has done enough on the training ground to suggest there might be something come the end of the season because he is an honest, hard-working guy as well as a good player.

"It's true that it has been hard to play him at a time when we have had senior experienced players available in the situation we have been in.

"And that is purely all that has held him back, nothing else, because his attitude has been top draw. He is a fantastic professional for such a young guy - he has captained his country don't forget and he is a top player.

"With four games to go it is something that Gerard and I will be speaking about because there are a few guys in the same boat as Michael. We are aware of these things. There are three or four players who we feel that if we have got ourselves into a better position earlier in the season then certain people would get more game time.

"But we're still very much aware that we need to keep this run going and, when a team does well, you don't want to be making big changes or changing things for the sake of it."

Villa also have decisions to make on Nigel Reo-Coker and Brad Friedel, whose contracts both expire in the summer. Ashley Young's future is sure to be the subject of speculation too, with only 12 months left on the England international's deal.

McAllister was adamant that Houllier would be the one to drive the decision making process.

He said: "I think we need to be sat down with Gerard, the chairman and Paul Faulkner because they are very important decisions for people's lives. We're aware of the situation and it will all be sorted.

"There has been no direct dialogue with these guys yet, but I'm sure they understand the situation."


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