Stephen Ireland ruled out for the rest of the season with ankle injury

27 April 2011 07:45
Rare sight: Ireland (right) during one of two appearances in the Geordie strip

Only a change of manager at Aston Villa can re-open the door to midfielder Stephen Ireland, who was forced to call time on his loan spell at Newcastle after yet another injury.

Ireland, 24, made just two appearances from the substitutes' bench as his attempt to earn a move to the north-east turned into a nightmare.

The player, who earns ?65,000 a week, has now been ruled out for the final four games of the season with an ankle problem and must return to Villa Park.

Gerard Houllier, recovering from a heart condition which threatens his position at the club, has been unimpressed with the Irish midfielder, who arrived as an ?8millionrated makeweight in the James Milner transfer to Manchester City.

His four-year contract now looks like a huge drain on Villa and he may be allowed to leave for just a few million, although his large wage packet could still cause problems for potential suitors.

Real Villan: Ireland fell out of favour with Villa boss Houiller having joined the Midlands side

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Source: Daily_Mail