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Villa target keeper McGregor as they battle relegation fears

| 29.11.2010

As Aston Villa slip further into relegation trouble, there is a strong possibility that they will sign a new goalkeeper in the January transfer window and Rangers’ Allan McGregor seems to be at the top of their shortlist.

Brad Friedel is still starring in goal at the age of 39, but despite manager Gerard Houllier saying he is happy with the performances of the American, there have been signs of late that his standards are slipping.

Friedel looked uncertain all game against Blackburn as long balls continuously made their way into his box and he also could have arguably done better with at least one of the four goals he conceded against Arsenal.

Villa have already conceded 24 goals in their 15 Premier League games this season and this poor defensive record is one of the reasons they find themselves just three points clear of the relegation zone.

And with tough games against Liverpool, Spurs and Manchester City coming up in the next month, Villa’s betting odds of 14/1 to be relegated this season could be on the generous side.

Brad Guzan has long been expected to take over from Friedel, but has struggled to dislodge his fellow American in two seasons and has only really been given first-team opportunities in the cup competitions.

This leads to the logic that the club do not see Guzan as the future replacement of Friedel and that the signing of a new goalkeeper is a priority.

McGregor has been offered an extension on his current contract at Rangers which expires in 2013, but has so far not signed and this may mean that the Scottish giants may be forced to sell while his price is still high.

Villa have watched McGregor in Champions League action for Rangers and if they were to make an offer it would be in the region of £6m.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.