Aston Villa to hold emergency talks with James Milner before World Cup
Paul Faulkner, the club's chief operating officer, will meet Milner and a representative from the Professional Footballers Association after England have played warm-up matches against Mexico and Japan, to conduct what have been described as preliminary discussions. It is unlikely the meeting would result in the 24-year-old signing a new contract with the Midlands club. It is understood Aston Villa are hoping to secure a verbal agreement from Milner, before he departs for South Africa on June 2, that he will commit his future once he returns from international duty. Related ArticlesManchester City consider upping Milner bidMilner's best position?Aston Villa reject £20m Man City bid for MilnerMartin O'Neill to stay on at Aston VillaO'Neill's player talks are good signSport on televisionConspiracy theorists will perhaps find it intriguing that it is not yet certain whether Martin O'Neill and Randy Lerner will attend the meeting. Lerner, the club's owner, will join Faulkner as long as his commitments in the Unites States do not cause a conflict. One presumes that O'Neill would want to present the vision he has for the club. Certainly, it appears as though their combined persuasive skills will be required if Villa are to retain Milner — if they decide to reject an anticipated bid that will almost certainly surpass £25m, that is — with it becoming increasingly apparent that the former Newcastle winger would not be averse to the move. Villa have already rejected a £20 million offer from City out of hand this week, while sources insist that contrary to reports Chelsea have not - yet - enquired about the player.
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