Leeds Utd news – Villa in for Johnson, Grella makes loan move, O’Brien and Becchio doubts

Villa in for Johnson.

Aston Villa are being linked with a move for Leeds United midfielder Bradley Johnson.

The 23-year-old is out of contract at the end of the season, and Leeds have indicated that they have made their final offer regarding a new deal. Johnson, who signed from Northampton Town in January 2008, will have seen his stock rise following his stunning goal against Arsenal in the FA Cup 3rd Round replay on Wednesday night. Leeds, who are in no rush to sell, would be looking for bids in excess of £500K if they were to allow him to leave. Aston Villa assistant manager, Gary McAllister, was Johnson’s former boss at Elland Road, but had farmed him out on loan to Brighton & Hove Albion as his reign came to an end in December 2009. Sky Sports.com have indicated that Villa have moved to the front of the queue, ahead of Wigan Athletic, Bolton Wanderers, Stoke City and Rangers.

O’Brien and Becchio doubts.

Andy O’Brien and Luciano Becchio are both doubts for Saturday’s trip to Portsmouth in the npower Championship.

Becchio missed Wednesday nights FA Cup 3rd Round Replay against Arsenal with a back injury, while O’Brien limped out of the action with a hamstring problem. Thom Kirwin of Yorkshire Radio reported on his Twitter page following Simon Grayson’s press conference that: “O’Brien is rated as ‘Highly Unlikely’ to feature. Becchio still a doubt but more of a chance of featuring.” O’Brien himself also posted on Twitter that: “Hamstring is ok having treatment on it and being assessed tomorrow.”

Should O’Brien miss out then Leigh Bromby, who replaced him against Arsenal, club captain Richard Naylor and Neil Collins will all be competing for his place.

Grella makes loan move.

Leeds United striker Mike Grella has completed a season long loan move to Scottish Premier League side Motherwell.

The American striker has just returned from a loan spell at Carlisle United, and Simon Grayson is keen for him to get some first team football. The Leeds boss told Leeds United.com: “The loan spell (at Carlisle) clearly did Mike good and this is another opportunity for him. Opportunities for him have been limited here with the players we have and this will be beneficial to all concerned. The SPL is a good standard and hopefully he will get games and gain in experience.”

Former Bradford City boss Stuart McCall was recently appointed manager of the Fir Park club and he told stv: “He’s got a lot of ability and his goalscoring record is good in the reserve side.”

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