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James Milner move hangs in balance

Sport | Published:

Villa's hopes of completing the James Milner and Stephen Ireland £26million part-exchange deal by the close of play today hung in the balance.

Villa's hopes of completing the James Milner and Stephen Ireland £26million part-exchange deal by the close of play today hung in the balance.

Milner trained with Villa today after featuring from the bench for England in last night's win over Hungary at Wembley, while Ireland was still in Manchester thrashing out a compensation deal with City.

It had been hoped a deal would be completed today, but the latest hitch in Milner's transfer saga means it now threatens to go on for at least another day.

Both clubs are eager to beat tomorrow's lunch-time deadline to register players for Saturday's opening games.

Villa owner Randy Lerner has received dozens of applications for the vacant managerial post at the club, following Martin O'Neill's shock departure on Monday.

The American will refuse to be rushed into an appointment, with caretaker boss Kevin MacDonald entrusted with the job until a permanent replacement is found.

Former England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson was made the new bookies' favourite yesterday and is reportedly ready to accept a cut in his wage demands.

Back at Villa, O'Neill's assistant John Robertson along with coaches Steve Walford and Seamus McDonagh have also left the club.

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