Manchester City's £20 million bid for James Milner rejected by Aston Villa

20 May 2010 07:22
City launched their initial bid last night for Milner who is currently in Austria with his country preparing for the forthcoming World Cup finals in South Africa. [LNB]Twelve months ago City were successful in prising Gareth Barry away from Villa in a £12m deal and now their attention has turned to Milner. [LNB] Related ArticlesTransfer TalkCity make £20m Milner bidEverton target Martin PetrovMancini tracks IbrahimovicMan City poised to swoop for £21.5m LuizToshack opens the door for BellamyHowever, Villa manager Martin O'Neill would be reluctant to lose the services of Milner, who is due to hold talks regarding a new contract during the summer, and the former Celtic coach wasted no time in turning down City's offer. [LNB]A Villa spokesman said: "We have received an offer from Manchester City for James Milner and this has been firmly rejected. [LNB]"We plan to sit down with James and his representative after the World Cup to agree a new long-term deal and this remains our position." [LNB]The 24-year-old has just enjoyed a successful season in a central midfield role and was recently crowned the PFA Young Player of the Year. [LNB]Milner is currently halfway through the four-year contract he signed when joining Villa for a club record £12m from Newcastle in the summer of 2008. [LNB]England coach Fabio Capello recently said Milner was "the future" of English football and he has made massive strides under O'Neill and is a near certainty to be part of the final 23 man squad for the World Cup. [LNB]Manchester United and Chelsea have also been linked with the player who first burst to prominence as a 16-year-old with Leeds. [LNB]Milner's big upturn in fortunes coincided with O'Neill deciding to switch him from a wide right role into the centre of the park midway through last season. [LNB]It was an inspired move with Milner helping Villa reach the final of the Carling Cup, the semi-finals of the FA Cup and the top six of the Barclays Premier League. [LNB]Villa would be keen to hold on to Milner as they look to push for a Champions League spot next season after a third successive top-six finish. [LNB]Club owner Randy Lerner stated only last week in his annual media briefing at Villa Park he was hopeful of the player remaining at Villa. [LNB]But there is no doubt Milner has become one of the hottest young properties in English football and his value could soar even higher if he has a successful World Cup. [LNB][LNB]

Source: Telegraph