Newcastle in for Villa midfielder Ireland

Newcastle Utd are looking to bring Aston Villa’s out-of-favour central midfielder Stephen Ireland to St James’ Park, according to a report in the Northern Echo.

Ireland has struggled to hold down a first team place under Gerard Houllier since his move from Manchester City, and it is thought that Villa would be willing to let the player leave in order to reduce the club wage bill.

Magpies manager Alan Pardew is known to want reinforcements during the January transfer window, and Ireland is a player is thought to be a player he is keen on, however any move, loan or permanent, would depend on whether club owner Mike Ashley would be willing to pay Ireland’s wage demands, thought to be around £72,000 a week.

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