New Year's Eve media watch [31.12.15]
Birmingham Mail: Rémi Garde wants Loic Remy at Villa - and hopes his French connections will entice the Chelsea striker to join the claret and blue survival mission. Villa have enquired about taking the French international on loan for the rest of the season as Garde looks for a January transfer window boost. The pair worked together at Lyon in their native France when Remy was coming through the ranks and Garde was assistant manager to Gerard Houllier.
Birmingham Mail: Jores Okore has resumed training ahead of Villa's trip to relegation rivals Sunderland this weekend. Okore missed Monday's 2-0 defeat to Norwich City at Carrow Road with a knee injury but is expected to be in contention for Saturday's visit to the Stadium of Light. Carlos Sanchez is still sidelined by a hamstring injury while Gabby Agbonlahor, who had been left out after failing to impress Rémi Garde in training is sidelined by a back problem. Jordan Ayew and Ashley Westwood are banned for the Sunderland match after each totting up five bookings.
Birmingham Mail: Manager Rémi Garde has reminded his Villa strugglers there are still '57 points to be won'. Villa have 19 games remaining, starting with Saturday's trip to relegation rivals Sunderland.
The Times: Guus Hiddink called on Rémi Garde to show Chelsea more respect last night after the Aston Villa manager made public his desire to sign Loic Remy. The France striker has yet to play for Chelsea's interim manager because of a calf injury that will also rule him out of the Barclays Premier League match away to Crystal Palace on Sunday but Hiddink insists he is a big part of his plans.
Daily Star: Guus Hinddink has slammed Rémi Garde's pursuit of Loic Remy. Aston Villa boss Garde revealed his plan to sign Chelsea's misfit striker yesterday, claiming he can help him win a place in France's Euro 2016 squad. But asked whether Garde was being disrespectful, Hiddink said he shouldn't have gone public. "You have to respect where the players are," he said.
The Sun: Guus Hiddink has blasted Aston Villa boss Rémi Garde for trying to tap up Loic Remy. Garde has spoken openly about wanting to sign the Chelsea striker on loan in the window.
Birmingham Mail Online: Rémi Garde admits he may have to shift Aston Villa's out-of-favour high earners to free up funds to bring in the claret and blue survival cavalry in January. Garde is expecting backing from owner Randy Lerner in the transfer window, but within prudent parameters because of the unused well-paid players creating a strain on the payroll.
Birmingham Mail Online: Aston Villa boss Rémi Garde has confirmed that he will allow Libor Kozak to leave in January - with Celtic the surplus striker's likely destination. Kozak has failed to make it into Garde's first team plans despite Villa being the Premier League's lowest scorers with just 15 goals.
Best of the Rest
Sky Sports: Liverpool obeyed the pragmatic instructions of Jurgen Klopp in the 1-0 win at Sunderland, according to Adam Lallana. As Liverpool ended the first half of the Premier League season, the result was all that mattered to Klopp, who ordered his team to go toe-to-toe with a Sunderland team fighting to avoid relegation."The manager has tried to drum into us that sometimes we've got to be dirtier, fight a bit more and play teams at their own game," said midfielder Lallana, who admitted there was luck involved in Christian Benteke's winning goal.
Sky Sports: Gary Neville insists he did not take on the role as Valencia's head coach to fast track him into the Manchester United or England managerial job. Neville is in charge at the Mestalla until the end of the season and, since taking on the role in early December, he has been put forward as a possible successor to Louis van Gaal at Manchester United and to Roy Hodgson, who he continues to work alongside as an England assistant.
*The extracts on this page are taken from various newspapers and media outlets. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Aston Villa.