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Darren Bent on verge of 24m switch to Aston Villa

18 Jan 2011 07:45:28

Darren Bent on verge of 24m switch to Aston Villa

Darren Bent was at a Midlands hotel on Monday night awaiting the green light to complete a sensational £24million transfer to Aston Villa. Sunderland fans were left stunned at the thought of losing their star striker just hours after seeing their team grab a last-gasp draw in the North East derby. Mega deal: Sunderland striker Darren Bent is on the brink of a stunning £24million move to Aston Villa Hotshot Bent... Darren Bent has scored 81 goals in the Barclays Premier League since August 2005. This figure is bettered only by Didier Drogba and Wayne Rooney, who have both scored 82 in the same period. Bent had submitted a transfer request barely two hours after celebrating Asamoah Gyan's injury-time equaliser against Newcastle. Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner has agreed to smash the club's record transfer fee - £12m for James Milner - and back manager Gerard Houllier. He has followed the £7m capture of Lyon midfielder Jean Makoun by raiding Sunderland for their prize asset. Sunderland boss Steve Bruce and chairman Niall Quinn were last night set to rubber-stamp a deal that will start from a basic £19m with add-ons to take it up to £24m. The 26-year-old Bent, last season's North East player of the year, also put in a transfer request in August when he became aware of big-money approaches from Turkish clubs Fenerbahce and Galatasaray. On the move: Villa are hoping to bank on proven goalscorer Bent to revive their struggling fortunes this season Sunderland talked him into staying then but with the prospect of a four-year Villa deal doubling the £35,000-a-week basic pay he agreed a year ago, they will not hold him back. Bruce will start work immediately on finding a replacement for last season's 24-goal top scorer, with Tottenham's Roman Pavlyuchenko heading his list. Spurs will encourage him instead to look at Robbie Keane, whose £6m move to Birmingham broke down yesterday over his wage demands. Any negotiations for Bent are complicated by the fact that Sunderland still owe Spurs part of the original £10m fee for signing the striker. Tottenham also have a sell-on clause giving them 10 per cent of any profit from his sale. Villa, out of the bottom three only on goal difference following Sunday's 1-1 draw at St Andrew's, have decided to spend to secure survival. They have improved the terms of their £3.5m bid for Blackpool's midfielder Charlie Adam after an initial offer was turned down, and have said they willreject bids for Ashley Young or Stewart Downing. Villa could also move for Cardiff's Jay Bothroyd at around £3m.  Aston Villa weigh up loan move for Cummings after striker impressesSunderland vow to boot out thugs after crowd violence erupts in derby showdown with NewcastleClub-by-club guide to every Premier League transfer deal during JanuaryAll the latest Aston Villa news, features and opinionAll the latest Sunderland news, features and opinion  Explore more:People: Darren Bent, Steve Bruce, Gerard Houllier, Didier Drogba, Wayne Rooney, Jay Bothroyd, Robbie Keane, Roman Pavlyuchenko, Ashley Young, James Milner, Stewart Downing, Niall Quinn, Charlie Adam Places: Lyon, Newcastle, Cardiff, Birmingham


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