Aside from winning the Premier League title, playing on the Champions League stage is as good as it gets in the world of football. For Aston Villa, a top four finish and the dream of European football could be the only way that a certain midfielder stays past this season.
Aston Villa manager Martin O’Neill told New of the World that while Gareth Barry may be a member of the club right now, there’s a good chance he could leave this summer if the club doesn’t make it to the biggest stage.
“Gareth is here until the end of the season. He was true to his word that he would stay in January,”
“If we keep the momentum going, who knows? But if we don’t qualify for Europe this season then things will be in the balance.
“The point I accept is that having given this season, which was what I wanted in the first place, I don’t think anyone would begrudge him the opportunity to move having spent that time here.
“It was this season I was asking for. If he continues to play in the fashion he is doing, he is in every bit as good a position as he was at the end of last season.” (News of the World)
Barry went through the whole transfer ordeal this past summer, and to his credit, he’s been completely quiet all season after he returned to Villa with a renewed passion for the game. Whilst he may stay around if Villa made the UEFA Cup next season, chances are pretty good that he’d probably jump ship and head to Liverpool or Arsenal (two of the teams that were chasing him earlier this summer).
What do Villa supporters think? Will Barry be around next season? And, what do you think your chances are of finishing in the top four?