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Page last updated at 15:17 GMT, Friday, 18 April 2008 16:17 UK

O'Neill 'desperate' to keep Barry

Martin O'Neill
O'Neill says Barry is integral to his plans at Villa Park (Getty)

Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill says he is "desperate" to keep captain Gareth Barry at the club.

The 27-year-old England midfielder has been linked with a move to Chelsea or Liverpool this summer.

O'Neill told BBC WM: "We're going to do everything possible to keep him at the football club.

"We're desperate for him to stay because he's a major part of it but I'm not surprised that loads of people are chasing him."

Barry still has two years of his contract left to run and is due a testimonial, having signed professional forms for Villa in February 1998.

Barry, who has been capped 17 times by England, told BBC WM: "It's certainly flattering to be linked with them [Chelsea and Liverpool], but I'm enjoying my football here.

"There's still so much to play for at Villa and there's no reason to be sidetracked by anything else."

see also
Derby 0-6 Aston Villa
12 Apr 08 |  Premier League
Thursday's gossip column
17 Apr 08 |  Gossip

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