Player returns for Blackburn trip

Reo-Coker back in squad after bust-up

September 25, 2009
By Soccernet staff

Nigel Reo-Coker has been recalled to the Aston Villa squad after his training ground bust-up with manager Martin O'Neill and could feature in Saturday's match at Blackburn.

GettyImagesReo-Coker and O'Neill: An embrace or a stranglehold?

Reo-Coker was dropped from O'Neill's plans for last weekend's league game with Portsmouth after the pair had clashed at Villa's Bodymoor Heath training complex.

The 25-year-old former West Ham United player also did not feature in the midweek Carling Cup encounter with Cardiff despite O'Neill making several changes to his line-up.

After the altercation, O'Neill told the club's website: "There was a mishap on the training ground. It's a common occurrence between players but on this occasion, unfortunately, it was between the manager and a player.

"There was a bit of a contretemps and that is unfortunate. Nigel didn't train this morning and obviously won't play tomorrow. I have dealt with the issue how I see fit and that's the end of it. Come Monday, we're back to normal again. I am the custodian of this place - my rules apply."

Reo-Coker may be needed as the in-form Steve Sidwell has been ruled out with a thigh injury.