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Last Updated: Tuesday, 23 August 2005, 13:58 GMT 14:58 UK
Baros completes transfer to Villa
Aston Villa have completed the signing of Czech Republic striker Milan Baros from Liverpool for 6.5m.

The 23-year-old, who fell out of favour with Reds boss Rafa Benitez, has signed a four-year deal with Villa after passing a medical on Tuesday.

Baros, who was top scorer at Euro 2004 with five goals, is expected to make his Villa debut against Blackburn.

"It is not easy to leave Liverpool, but Villa are also a big club, so I'm happy to come here," he told Villa's website.

"It is nice to be here and I am looking forward to making my debut on Saturday against Blackburn at Villa Park, when I will do my very best to open with a goal.

"I spoke to David O'Leary at length and he was a big factor in my deciding to come here.

"It was a big decision for me, but if the manager wants you it is easier and David's influence was one of the reasons I am here.

"I used to play alongside Patrik Berger at Liverpool and also with the Czech Republic. So I spoke to him and he said so many good things about Villa to encourage me to join."

Baros found himself behind Djibril Cisse, Fernando Morientes and Peter Crouch in the pecking order at Anfield.

He has made just three appearances off the bench this season but was Liverpool's joint top-scorer with 13 goals last season.

The striker denied he had had a run-in with Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez.

"I never had a personal problem with Rafael Benitez. He prefers other players in his team and that's just the sort of thing that happens in football," he said.

"But even before the Champions League final in Istanbul there was speculation about my future so I was prepared for leaving Liverpool."

Baros also attracted interest from Lyon, who are managed by former Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier.

The French side reportedly tabled an 8m offer, but Baros, who was also interesting German side Schalke, wanted to remain in the Premiership.

Villa right midfielder Nolberto Solano has been linked with a move in the opposite direction.

O'Leary insisted he will not stand in Solano's way should he want to leave.

"I will never keep someone, at any club I am at, who wants to leave," said O'Leary. "That is the bottom line.




WATCH AND LISTEN
News conference: Aston Villa's Millan Baros



SEE ALSO
Baros emerges as Everton target
02 Aug 05 |  Everton
Schalke 04 pull out of Baros deal
01 Aug 05 |  Liverpool
Pardew confirms interest in Baros
20 Jul 05 |  West Ham Utd
Baros reveals Valencia interest
28 May 05 |  Liverpool
Houllier admits interest in Baros
09 Jun 05 |  Liverpool
Benitez denies Owen bid reports
19 Aug 05 |  Liverpool


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