Villa Park misfit at St James’ Park ahead of medical.
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Aston Villa midfielder Stephen Ireland will undergo a medical at Newcastle on Sunday ahead of a potential loan move, Sky Sports News understands.
The 24-year-old has fallen down the pecking order at Villa Park since Gerard Houllier’s arrival as manager in September, making just six Premier League starts.
The French boss has publicly voiced his disillusionment with the midfielder, insisting he needs to work harder at his game.
The Republic of Ireland international’s possible move to St James’ Park could make way for USA midfielder Michael Bradley, who has been heavily linked with a loan deal at the Midlands club from German side Borussia Monchengladbach.
Villa were thought to be closing in on the American’s signature on Saturday, although Houllier remained tight-lipped over a possible deal.
Ireland, who arrived at Villa last year from Manchester City, will have a medical on Tyneside some time on Sunday evening, with a loan deal expected to materialise before the transfer window shuts on Monday.
SOURCE: Sky Sports
Stephen Ireland is a player who’s star has fallen somewhat over the past two and a half seasons. The former Manchester City man was at one point considered one of the shining lights of Premier League football but things appeared to go pear shaped at Eastlands when Sven Goran Eriksson left the club and various off field shenanigans left the Irish playmaker looking for a new direction and hence a move to Aston Villa followed as part of the deal that saw James Milner move in the opposite direction.
However once again his progress hit the buffers with Gerard Houllier’s arrival at Villa Park. Ireland and Newcastle United should be a good fit and the arrival of extra creativity in the St James’ Park midfield, especially given Hatem Ben Arfa’s lenghty absence, will be just what Alan Pardew will be looking for as the Magpies boss looks to make the most of a good series of performances.
The loan deal will apparently include the a clause that gives Newcastle United first refusal on a permanent deal in the summer.