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Aston Villa Close to Signing Manchester City's Shay Given

Ambuj Gupta
615   //    08 Jul 2011, 13:04 IST

Aston Villa have stepped up their interest in Manchester City goalkeeper Shay Given to fill in the void left by Brad Friedel’s departure to Tottenham.

If a deal is agreed between the two parties, Given will become Alex McLeish’s first signing at Villa Park.  The clubs are likely to agree a fee of around £3.5 million for the 35-year-old Republic of Ireland international.

Given, who made just four appearances last season for Roberto Mancini’s team, has become frustrated at Manchester City after losing his place to Joe Hart and will be allowed to leave Eastlands for a fee in the region of £4m. The stopper is ready to take a pay cut [from £80,000 a week at City to less than £60,000 a week at Villa] in order to ensure first team action for the Claret and Blues’.

However, it is not a completely done deal yet and Villa still have other goalkeeping options as back-up if it hits a late snag for any reason.

McLeish is keen for Brad Guzan to stay to challenge the new keeper despite previous suggestions Villa would allow the American international to leave. Guzan failed to oust American compatriot Friedel from Premier League duty and spent part of last season on loan at Championship club Hull.

“I’d also like to hold on to Brad, definitely. I don’t think we’d be letting him go at this particular stage,” said McLeish.

Ambuj Gupta
General-Male-Engineer (If you fit the combo too, you will realize your misfortune once you appear for CAT). Well, been associated with Keeda off and on for more than 3 years now. Write football stuff. Manchester United, Netherlands.
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