Thursday media watch [24.07.14 PM]: Delph on contract talk
Express and Star: Striker Christian Benteke has handed Aston Villa a huge boost as the injured star took another step on the road to recovery. The 23-year-old, out of action since rupturing his Achilles in April, took part in light training during the club's pre-season tour of Texas.
ClubCall: Fabian Delph has confirmed that he would like to sign a new contract at Aston Villa and he is "ready to talk" to the club. The 24-year-old former England Under-21 midfield star, who was signed by former Villa boss Martin O'Neill from Leeds in a £6million deal in 2009, has gradually become a key man for the current side in the two years that boss Paul Lambert has been at the helm. Delph acknowledged that his time at Villa Park did not get off to the best of starts, but he is delighted at the way the club and current owner Randy Lerner have stood by him over the years.
Goal.com: Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert expects Joe Cole to be fully fit for the start of the Premier League season despite picking up a thigh injury. Former England midfielder Cole, who arrived at Villa Park as a free agent last month, sat out Wednesday's 2-0 win over MLS side Dallas after being hurt in a friendly against Mansfield last week. However, Lambert is confident the 32-year-old will be ready to make his competitive debut when Villa begin the new season at Stoke City on August 16.
FourFourTwo: Fabian Delph is keen to open talks with Aston Villa over a new contract but the midfielder has stated "it's not up to me." By his own admission, Delph lost his way at Villa Park following his move from Leeds United five years ago but he has rediscovered his form to become a key player for the Premier League side. The 24-year-old is entering the final year of his contract with the West Midlands club and is eager to extend his stay.
Best Of The Rest
BBC Sport: Former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard has joined Major League Soccer side New York City FC on a two-year deal.
Sky Sports: New midfielder Ander Herrera believes Manchester United's current players share the same passion and determination as Eric Cantona.
BBC Sport: Luis Suarez could make his Barcelona debut against rivals Real Madrid, with the first El Clasico of the season set for the weekend of Sunday, 26 October.
*The extracts on this page are taken from various newspapers and media outlets. They do not necessarily reflect the views of Aston Villa.
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