Aston Villa’s Jack Grealish out for three months after kidney rupture

Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish will be out for at least three months after damaging one of his kidneys.

The England Under-21 international suffered the injury in the first half of Saturday’s pre-season friendly against Watford.

Villa manager Steve Bruce told BBC WM: “It’s very painful and he’s still in hospital, which tells you something about the extent of the injury.

“We wish him a speedy recovery because the kid’s still in a lot of pain.”

Meanwhile, Ivory Coast international Jonathan Kodjia is expected to be out of action for at least one more month as he continues his recovery from the broken ankle he suffered at the end of last season.

With Grealish set for a prolonged absence, Bruce said that his ability to replace the 21-year-old could be hampered by Financial Fair Play regulations.

Aston Villa sign former Blackburn defender Chris Samba


Aston Villa have signed experienced defender Chris Samba on a free transfer.
Samba, 33, was a free agent after leaving Greek side Panathinaikos in January and has signed a one-year deal after spending pre-season with Villa.

He previously spent five years with Blackburn and also had a spell at QPR.
He joins Chelsea centre-back John Terry, Manchester United goalkeeper Sam Johnstone and Hull City full-back Ahmed Elmohamady in moving to Villa Park this summer.
Samba scored 18 goals in 186 appearances for Blackburn after joining from Hertha Berlin for a bargain £450,000 in January 2007.

But he spent only six months with QPR, rejoining Anzhi Makhachkala for £12m in July 2013 after signing from the Russian side for £12.5m the previous January.

Aston Villa sign Glenn Whelan from Stoke for £2million


Aston Villa have signed Stoke midfielder Glenn Whelan in a deal which could rise to £2million. The 33-year-old has put pen to paper on a two-year contract at Villa Park, bringing to an end his nine-year association with the Premier League side.

“I have enjoyed happy times at Stoke City but now is the time for a new football adventure – and what a club to join in Aston Villa,” Whelan told Villa’s official club website.

“We may be in the Championship but everything about this club screams Premier League – and it’s the job of the players to get us back up there.

“I am looking forward to working with Steve Bruce. I know he has a phenomenal record in achieving promotion to the top flight and, having spoken to him at length, I am more than aware of how much he wants to get back there again with this great club.”

Villa have paid Stoke an initial £1.25million but the fee could rise to £2million with certain add-ons and clauses.

Whelan made more than 330 appearances for Stoke after joining the club from Sheffield Wednesday for £500,000 in January 2008.

He helped the Potters clinch promotion to the Premier League during the 2008/09 season and was a mainstay in the team as Stoke went on to establish themselves in the top flight.

The Republic of Ireland international becomes the fourth new arrival at Villa this summer after the signings of Ahmed Elmohamady, John Terry and Sam Johnstone.

John Terry replaces James Chester as the captain of Aston Villa 

​John Terry has been appointed as the new captain of Aston Villa.

The 36-year-old former England and Chelsea skipper takes the armband from James Chester, and wore it for the first time on his Villa debut in Saturday’s pre-season friendly against Shrewsbury.

Terry joined the club earlier this month, signing a one-year deal with the Sky Bet Championship side as manager Steve Bruce sets his sights on mounting a promotion push for the 2017/18 season.

Preview: Chelsea Vs Aston Villa

Jose Mourinho
Jose Mourinho

Jose Mourinho has probably run out of individuals or bodies to blame following Chelsea’s poor start to the season. The doctors and physio have been blamed. Match officials and the FA have also taken some share of the blame. The star players of the team have also not been exempted. And of course, Arsene Wenger. Chelsea were taken apart by Southampton two weeks at Stamford Bridge despite taking the lead. Their defence has been poor with Ivanovic being the main culprit. The Serbian defender will miss the game due to injury but there will probably be no Chelsea fan that will lose sleep over this. The Serbian has been poor this season but has somehow managed to survive the chop.

Chelsea have another opportunity to kick-start their season yet again against an Aston Villa that has failed to win since the opening day victory at Bournemouth. Villa have picked up just one point since then and even with Chelsea’s current predicaments, the Champions will be expected to get a positive result against the Birmingham side who are having their worse start of a top flight season. Tim Sherwood will be looking to avoid a fifth consecutive league defeat. Mourinho will have to find a way to shore up his defence. Their defence has leaked in at least two goals in seven of their eight games.

Chelsea will welcome back Diego Costa from suspension and the Spaniard will aim to hit top form quickly to help Chelsea up the table. Aston Villa’s records at Chelsea are pretty poor and have conceded 30 goals from their last eight visits to the London club. Chelsea may have lost five of their last ten league games, but surely this is a game they will be expected to win. Villa on the other hand will hope that Chelsea will come bearing gifts.

Team News

Chelsea

Diego Costa returns after completing a three game suspension for violent conduct. Ivanovic is ruled out due to a hamstring injury sustained while on international duty. Thibaut Courtois is still sidelined with a knee injury and could return in December.

Aston Villa

Villa are still without Gabby Agbonlahor and Ciaran Clark who are both out with calf and thigh injuries. They are joined on the sidelines by Okore and Gardner.

Preview: Crystal Palace Vs Aston Villa

Palace
Zaha contests with Monreal last weekend. Image: Stuart MacFarlane

After opening day victories, Crystal palace and Aston Villa were brought down to earth after suffering defeats in their second league games. Both sides clash hoping to banish memories of defeats they suffered last weekend. Crystal Palace suffered defeat to Arsenal last weekend after matching the Gunners for long spells, before the superior quality of Arsenal eventually showed. Villa, however, were poor against Man United and never really looked like they were going to get anything from the game.

Crystal Palace enjoyed a fine 2014/2015 season following the appointment of Alan Pardew after he decided to leave Newcastle. Their improved performance and league position was mainly due to their ability to pick points away from home. Last season, the London side claimed only six home wins. They will be aiming to improve on that record and possibly make Selhurst Park a fortress and a much more difficult place to visit this season.

Aston Villa is expected by pundits and analysts to struggle this season following the departure of some key players. Christian Benteke, Fabian Delph and Vlaar have all departed the club while the new signings continue to settle in their new environment. Aston Villa’s recent trips to London do not give too much reason for optimism though. They have only found the back of the net twice in their last 10 visits while Palace have lost just once in the last 6 league meetings between the two sides, claiming 3 wins in those games. Villa opened the season with a 1-0 win over Bournemouth before succumbing to their usual annual defeat to Manchester United. They lacked invention and inspiration at home to United. They will need to produce a better performance against a very difficult Crystal Palace who will fancy their chances against the Birmingham side.

Team News.

Crystal Palace

Bakary Sako could make his debut after missing the Arsenal game. Marouane Chamakh and Julian Speroni remain sidelined due to hamstring and hand injuries respectively.

Aston Villa

Former Barcelona striker Adama Traore is unlikely to start as his manager stated he is short of match fitness. In his absence, Jack Grealish and Carles Gil should be available for selection after recovering from injuries picked up in pre-season.

English Premier League: Aston Villa 0-1 Manchester United

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Manchester United went top of the Premier League as they maintained their perfect start to the league season and in the process extended their fanatstic run at Villa Park.

The big news before kick off was the continued exclusion of David De Gea as doubts about his Manchester United remained and refused to go away. In his absence, Sergio Romero kept his place while Adnan Januzaj was handed a rare start in place of Ashley Young.

The Belgian, who has been linked with a loan exit, scored the only goal of the match as United completed back-to-back 1-0 wins in the Premier League, and extended their unbeaten run at Villa Park in the league to 20 games.

Mata played an incisive pass to Januzaj who then evaded Richards’ sliding tackle before sending a low drive in off the post with the help of a deflection off Villa defender Ciaran Clark.

Villa offered nothing in form of attacking threat as the Man United defence had to deal with little or no pressure. Wayne Rooney also failed to impress for the second game running. Aston Villa will know that they will have to improve in attack, a side whose attack has been further blunted by the departure of Benteke.