Randy Lerner, rumours, Nigel Reo-Coker leaving on a free and Barcelona want Webcam

Doc has very kindly sent a post in about the match tomorrow which means I'm not going to do a preview as I normally would but instead I'll use his and pass it off as my preview by adding a nice coloured box to the bottom with my prediction. But before we get to that (some time this afternoon), there are a few things you need to know about and things I just want to say.

First up is Nigel Reo-Coker and the story yesterday was that he is going to see out his contract and wait for a bumper pay day. I hope it wasn't us that gave him the idea when speculation linked him with a host of clubs back in November.

Nigel Reo-Coker


I know it wasn't us that that gave him the idea - he has an agent earning between 10% and 15% of everything he earns to come up with plans like that. I'm just saying - after what happened, Reo-Coker can't really be blamed for waiting. Why should he leave?

We don't know what went on between Reo-Coker and O'Neill but O'Neill has told us it is all forgotten. We know it isn't really because Reo-Coker was dropped after it happened and since then, even after all was forgotten, twice, he hasn't really featured - just the off five minutes here and there before getting injured.

We will find out one day what happened and for the record, Reo-Coker is no numpty - he is a smart bloke and whatever did happen didn't just happen when there was no talk of tactics or possession, he would have given it thought and he would have picked his time and don't be surprised if others knew it was going to happen too. Talk is he is a well liked player at the club.

Randy Lerner

Someone pointed me to this profile piece on Randy Lerner published in the Independent today - I've not read all of it yet, but I will, when I get a few minutes, but I thought you'd like to see it too.

Randy Lerner
It's my sense that we're at something of a crossroads for English football just now. The international breadth of the game, from players to owners, is uniquely distilled in this country. But, at Villa, we're very much concentrating on developing a sustainable local business. One that can function and grow.

You can read it all here and I know I'll get a bit of stick for it - but it really is, I imagine, going to be absolutely, 100%, everything you would expect. It is, I have no doubt, going to be a fantastic bit of PR and I am saying that after only reading the first few paragraphs.

Marlon Harewood

Quick round up of some of the speculation; Newcastle want Harewood. This wouldn't surprise me as Harewood, if given the chances I think will score a few goals. He wasn't give the chances with us and while I think he would be a very good Championship striker - playing regularly - I think with the right team behind him, he could be a decent Premier League striker.

Webcam to play in Spain?

In another rumour sure to get people talking - Barcelona are apparently lining up a bid for Webcam, if their bid for Frank Ribery fails. I can't see this happening for so many reasons but the main one is that Barcelona only ever, usually, buy in the finished article, someone at the top of the game to fit into the way they play football. Webcam is still developing and Webcam and I mean this with all the respect in the World, is not Barcelona quality.

Martin O'Neill going continental?

Last rumour before I head off for some food is that Martin O'Neill is lining up a move for Stephane Sessegnon, according to the French media. The Paris Saint-Germain 'playmaker' is apparently said to be a major target for O'Neill in the summer transfer window.

Now, I dismissed this rumour the minute I read Paris Saint-Germain, but there comes a time in every football fans life when he just throws all logic out the window and hopes it is true. There is a chance O'Neill could be looking further afield that Scotland. Everything is possible.

Right - coffee and toast for me - more later.