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I'M OFF! Villa try to collar Colly for a knockdown pounds 5m.

Aston Villa plan to make a cheeky knockdown pounds 5m bid for Stan Collymore.

Villa boss Brian Little is desperate for more firepower up front and is ready to gamble on Liverpool's controversial hitman.

Little's problems intensified yesterday as Dwight Yorke limped off after 14 minutes of Villa's 2-0 win over Derby. Savo Milosevic will see a specialist on Tuesday about his Achilles problems.Liverpool have been trying to off- load Collymore for weeks following a series of bust-ups. Collymore has been:

Involved in an explosive incident with a young reserve player

Cried off from training, claiming traffic problems from his Cannock home ...

And this week he stormed up the tunnel when substituted against Arsenal.

Now manager Roy Evans may be ready to cut his losses but is likely to demand the pounds 5m cash plus defender Steve Staunton.

Evans is under pressure from the Anfield board to recoup most of the pounds 8.5m he paid Nottingham Forest for the player.

And with Staunton valued by Liverpool at pounds 1.75m their losses would not be huge. Little has been reluctant to sell Republic of Ireland star Staunton but may ultimately be prepared to throw him into the package.

Villa are the first club to have made a firm bid for Collymore and Evans is determined to push a deal through even though he has no ready-made replacement.

Frustrated Evans wanted to join the bidding for pounds 15m Alan Shearer but couldn't make a move until he'd sold Collymore.

He even asked Shearer to delay a decision on his move to Newcastle until he tried to sell Collymore but there was no interest either in this country or abroad.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Author:McINTYRE, ANDY
Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Aug 25, 1996
Words:280
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