Villa close in on Petrov

29 August 2006 04:32
Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill is reportedly close to sealing a deal to be reunited with Celtic's Bulgarian international midfielder Stilian Petrov. The 27-year-old is set to snub late interest from Portsmouth and complete his £6million switch to Villa Park. "Celtic know the situation, I've expressed my desire to leave many times," said Petrov. "It's no secret that I'm a close friend with Villa boss Martin O'Neill. Let's see if I'm going to be a Villa player." O'Neill worked with Petrov during his five-year spell in charge of the Glasgow giants. Petrov joined Celtic in July 1999 from CSKA Sofia and made more than 250 appearances for the club. He submitted a transfer request at the end of last season and has not been included in Gordon Strachan's squad for the Bhoys' last two SPL fixtures. Pompey boss Harry Redknapp has admitted defeat in his bid to sign Petrov, saying over the weekend: "I think you'll find Petrov has gone to Villa. That's the plan and we wish him all the best."

Source: ESA