Wednesday media watch [17.02.16]
Birmingham Mail: Villa will have to fight off competition from money bags Manchester City to land young Hartlepool United ace Jack Blackford. The winger, 17, was on trial at Bodymoor Heath recently after impressing for his current side's youth set-up. Blackford, a jet-heeled teenager who is comfortable playing on either flank or in midfield, caught the eye of Villa's scouts after graduating from Hartlepool's Academy where he had been since he was nine. After spending a week in the Midlands, he has now moved on to City and will assess his options in the near future.
Birmingham Mail: Ray Wilkins has advised all footballers to steer clear of Twitter following Joleon Lescott's controversial car tweet. Lescott incensed Villa fans by posting a picture of a flash Mercedes sports car just minutes after Sunday's 6-0 defeat to Liverpool at Villa Park. He then apologised and explained he had tweeted it by accident while driving with his phone in his pocket. Former Villa assistant manager Wilkins insisted it was out of character for the experienced defender who is a "nice bloke."
The Times: Tim Sherwood rather than Jose Mourinho should replace Louis van Gaal at Manchester United manager until the end of the season. That is the belief of Paul Parker, the former United and England defender, who sees the former Aston Villa manager as the perfect short-term solution to the club's problems.
Birmingham Mail Online: Aston Villa boss Rémi Garde will be feeling lower than a snake's belly - but should take his time before deciding his future. That is the verdict of former Villa assistant boss Ray Wilkins, who feels sorry for the Frenchman following Sunday's 6-0 beating by Liverpool. Wilkins, who left the club when Tim Sherwood was sacked in October, described the claret and blues' performance against the Reds as "inept". "A lot of supporters will say managers can't motivate the players," Wilkins told talkSPORT. "Why on earth should they? Who motivates the manager when he's as low as a snake's belly and he's as low as a snake's belly Rémi Garde there's no two ways about it" felt for him because he picked a team that he thought would fight and would give its all, but when you're giving away soft goals the way Aston Villa are. "He looked a shocked man and I felt for him immensely because it's not pleasant to be in that situation."
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BBC Sport: Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink believes his side have a "50-50" chance of reaching the Champions League quarter-finals after Paris St-Germain beat them 2-1 in the first leg of their last-16 tie. John Mikel Obi cancelled out Zlatan Ibrahimovic's opener for PSG, but Edinson Cavani gave the hosts victory. The second leg will take place at Stamford Bridge on 9 March.
Sky Sports: Greg Dyke's planned reforms at the Football Association will go before the organisation's 123-strong council on Wednesday. The outgoing FA chairman is proposing a series of measures to make the council more modern and representative of the wider football community.
BBC Sport: Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo walked out of a news conference on Tuesday after being questioned about his record in away matches this season. Ronaldo, 31, has scored 32 goals this season but has not netted away from the Bernabeu since 29 November."Who else has scored more goals away from home than me since I arrived in Spain?" said Ronaldo, the all-time top scorer in the Champions League. "Name one player who has scored more than me. No answer? OK. Thank you."
*The extracts on this page are taken from various newspapers and media outlets. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Aston Villa.