Cheeky pint, Benteke quotes, a broke Dunne and a trip to Germany

Petrov has taken a roll at the club assisting Gordon Cowans from next season. I for one think that is nice and I'm sure everyone else does too.

I'm not entirely sure how it is going to work because Petrov doesn't need the job and if he is serious about coaching, assisting Cowans isn't going to be where he wants to be, but it is a good place for him to get his badges.


It's nice anyway and I wanted to start with some news, because the rest is speculation. Or is it?

If Aston Villa say I must stay, I won't necessarily accept that. I do not in any way want to feel I didn't get the most out of my career. With my family I will decide where my future lies.

Possibly Christian Benteke

On top of that, apparently his agent has been talking too and I don't like agents. Sure, some are good for the game and the player, but most are only in it for what they can get out of it and they often move players just for the commission and more income each week. Not all, granted, but some and many.

There were discussions with Aston Villa, but nothing concrete has been achieved at this moment. He is on duty with the national team and then we have to deal with it after that.

Eris Kismet

But we have no proof of any of this and he is under contract, so even if he wants away, the club don't have to sell him. In fact the club can keep him and quite probably talk him into another season. I might be wrong, but doesn't he have three years left on his contract?

And he's only a nipper, what is the hurry? If he is as good as we all hope, another season playing for us will do him no harm at all, but getting moved to a bigger club might not be all it is cracked up to be; will he play regularly, will it again take him time to settle (he didn't start the season the way he finished it with us) and do the bright lights mean bright things?

Here is the kicker

And, to top it all off, this could be just the press, fed by someone to plant these stories. I believe little I read in the tabloids and I count the local press in that bracket too. They are bottom feeders, all of them and you can buy stories with the promise of something else down the line, cash or a night out.

This could be and hopefully it is, nothing. On the other hand, he is going to get offers and he is going to be told of what he can earn and what is possible for him by moving so he may have his head turned.

Hell, he probably will be flattered and he probably will be thinking about what is possible, but we have to hope that the club make him a fair offer on his new contract and in as nice a way as possible explain to him that he does have a contract and that, right now, they fully expect him to be an Aston Villa player next season and to see that season out. And that is even if it comes to that, because it might not.

In other speculation

This might be news, I don't know but until it is confirmed, I treat it as speculation, so here goes. Shay Given wants a £5mn pay off to leave the club, three years before his contract expires. If I was Shay and his age, I'd just wait it out. But that's only because it is rumoured to be worth £10mn.

Richard Dunne has been shown the door and not the door The Priory, the Aston Villa door. He is officially off, if rumours are to be believed and if other rumours are to be believed, he's almost broke. Cash broke that is, not heart broken because we've shown him the door.

Lastly today, Ireland and Bent are rumoured to be on the list of players we are willing to offload that is circulating around Premier League, Championship and MLS clubs. Truth is, while I'd not be surprised in any way whatsoever, I still don't think Bent got a fair crack of the whip under this manager, but he is the manager and that ship has sailed.

I'm thinking about getting a cheeky afternoon pint and I'm seriously thinking about a trip to Germany for pre-season, anyone else?