Wigan Athletic owner Dave Whelan has not ruled out the possibility of England international Emile Heskey returning to the club in January.
The 31-year-old moved from the Latics to Aston Villa in a £3.5million deal nine months ago but has struggled to become a first-team regular under Martin O'Neill.
Earlier in the week, Heskey hinted that he may need to leave Villa Park if he is to feature in Fabio Capello's England squad for next summer's World Cup Finals in South Africa.
Whelan told Sky Sports News of Heskey's predicament: "I find it very strange that Emile can play well for England and yet he can't get selected for Aston Villa.
"I have a great deal of sympathy for him. He's one wonderful football player. As a gentleman and a lad he's 100 per cent. When he goes out on the park he always gives 110 per cent.
"We could well be (interested). I thought he was fantastic for us. He was coming to the end of his contract and obviously wanted to move on. As usual I honoured his wishes.
"John Terry knows how difficult he is to play against. When you get a centre-half of his quality and he's saying he's difficult to play against you'd better believe it.
"I think we got about £3.5million for him. He's got to be worth that. I'd be very surprised if Aston Villa sell him. He really, really wants to go the World Cup in South Africa. I think he's got a future at Villa I really do."