• Premier League

Lambert steps up Villa overhaul

ESPN staff
June 24, 2013
Paul Lambert is keen to see Darren Bent and Stephen Ireland removed from the Aston Villa payroll © PA Photos

Several more of Aston Villa's fringe players could be on their way to new clubs as manager Paul Lambert continues to overhaul his squad.

Having given a free transfer to Australian Brett Holman and recruited extensively in the first half of the close season, Lambert's overhaul is continuing apace.

Holman appears destined for the United Arab Emirates, with Dubai club Al Nasr interested.

The 29-year-old Australia international made 29 senior Villa appearances in 2012-13 despite an injury-hit second half of the season.

Midfielder Barry Bannan, who started for Scotland in their World Cup qualifying win in Croatia, is another who may now be surplus to requirements at Villa Park.

He fell out of favour in the final weeks of the season, not playing for the first team in either April or May.

Lambert also wants to offload full-back Alan Hutton, who has spent loan spells at Nottingham Forest and Real Mallorca in the last seven months.

The manager is on a mission to trim the wage bill, with the recent influx of new faces having increased that need, and is keen to move on big earners such as striker Darren Bent, Shay Given and Stephen Ireland.

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