Aston Villa trio set for shock Doncaster moves

Irish investors have helped newly-promoted Championship side Doncaster Rovers pull off the signing of out-of-favour Aston Villa goalkeeper Shay Given, according to the Daily Mail, with other big names set to follow.

Given was replaced as Villa’s first-choice goalkeeper in the early weeks of last season by Brad Guzan, with appearances from then on limited to the cup competitions. The Irishman has been linked with Premier League clubs including Hull City this summer, but it now appears that Doncaster have emerged as the surprise front runners, with the deal being a season-long loan.

Rovers released 43-year-old Neil Sullivan on Thursday, suggesting that the club are confident in securing Given, who has made 440 Premier League appearances in his career. Gary Woods was first-choice as Doncaster won the League One title last season.

Two other Irish internationals who endured a disappointing 2012/13 with Villa, Richard Dunne and Stephen Ireland, are said to be lined up to follow Given to the Keepmoat Stadium. Ireland has not played for Villa since January, while Dunne was released in June after missing the whole of last season through injury.

The high-profile names being linked with Doncaster represent a statement of intent, as the club look to establish themselves under new manager, Paul Dickov.

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