Aston Villa Transfer Rumours: 6 Players the Club Should Sell This Summer
Yesterday brought us the unsurprising news that Aston Villa and Alex McLeish have gone their separate ways.
The split follows a poor season for for the Villains in which they only managed to win seven of their 38 games.
While McLeish undoubtedly takes the fair share of the blame, some of it must fall on the shoulders of the players.
This suggests that there should be some exits from Villa Park this summer.
The task will now fall to a new manager to turn the club's fortunes around.
A lot of emphasis will be placed on which players he should bring in, but also who should they be looking to ship out?
Here are six players whose usefulness to the club may be coming to an end.
Who do you think Villa should be looking to get rid of this summer? Comment below.
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While Richard Dunne has been a consistent performer in the centre of the defence since he arrived from Manchester City, last season showed that time is catching up with the Irishman.
Dunne found himself out of action with injury this season, resulting in him only playing 28 league games this term.
When he was on the field, Dunne was still a strong presence but showed a lack of pace that will only become more prohibitive as time goes on.
There have been rumours of interest from Sunderland, where Dunne would link up with former manager Martin O'Neill.
The club already has an able long-term replacement in Ciaran Clark, and they should look to take advantage of any interest in Dunne.
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At a time when the Villa midfield is screaming for more creativity, it may not look like a good idea to get rid of Stephen Ireland.
Yet regardless of his potential, Ireland's time at Aston Villa has not been good enough to warrant him staying at the club.
If Ireland could recreate the form he showed at Manchester City earlier in his career, then it may be a different story.
So far that hasn't looked likely, though.
With Gary Gardner looking ready to break into the first team and Brett Holman arriving this summer, the club would be best served getting what money they can from the sale of Ireland.
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Much like Richard Dunne, now might be a good time to cash in on James Collins.
The Welshman has been linked with a move back to the country with Swansea, and the move could be in the best interests of all involved.
With the club looking for a fresh start, now would be a good time to cash in on Collins and invest in another centre-back for the future.
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Very few players covered themselves in glory this season, and one who was definitely not among them was right-back Alan Hutton.
The former Tottenham man has only been with the club for one season, but Villa have looked vulnerable on the right side of the pitch far too often.
However, Hutton has shown that he is capable of playing well in the past, and he could just be taking a while to settle at the club.
Villa should only look to sell the Scot if the right player is available to replace him.
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Another player who has only been at the club for a year but could be sold on is Charles N'Zogbia.
The Frenchman was brought in for £9.5 million last summer to compensate for the losses of Ashley Young and and Stewart Downing.
Unfortunately, N'Zogbia has not justified his transfer fee and often struggled to impose himself on the pitch last season.
While it may seem a little premature to call for his sale already, Barry Bannan could be a better option on the left and N'Zogbia's wages mean he is too expensive to be warming the bench.
Villa could look to raid relegated Wolves or Blackburn for Matt Jarvis or Morten Gamst Pedersen as cheaper replacements for N'Zogbia.
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This is not strictly a player that Villa will be selling this summer, rather one whose contract is up and should not be extended.
Heskey has been of limited usefulness ever since he arrived at the club in 2009. Rarely has he justified the £60,000 a week wages that the club are giving him.
The only possible reason to keep Heskey would be the different option that he offers the club up front.
However there are far better options available to the club, and Villa should not consider giving Heskey another contract.