Transfer news

Houllier confirms Makoun interest

January 8, 2011

Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier has confirmed his interest in signing 27-year-old Lyon midfielder Jean Makoun.

Jean Makoun
GettyImagesJean Makoun spent two-and-a-half years at Lyon

• West Ham target Sidwell

But Houllier admits the current asking price - believed to be around £7million - is too high for the Cameroon international. Makoun has been identified as one of Houllier's leading targets during the January transfer window.

Houllier said: "What is the position with Makoun? There is dialogue going on at the moment. But the price is too high and we'll do what is right for the club.''

Lyon splashed out £11million to sign Makoun from Lille two years ago and are keen to recoup as much of their outlay as possible. Houllier remains hopeful that a loan deal for Manchester City defender Wayne Bridge will also go through. He needs to sign an experienced left-back with Stephen Warnock having fallen out of favour after a loss of form.

Houllier said: "The club is dialoguing with a lot of options and one of them is Wayne Bridge that I would like to have. He is an experienced left-back and, maybe at some stage we hope that would go through. When good players are not playing, a lot of clubs in January will try to get them.''

Houllier's only signing to date is Tottenham defender Kyle Walker, who has joined on loan for the remainder of the season. Central defender Curtis Davies is back in training at Villa after a loan spell at Leicester but Houllier admitted he could return to the Foxes.

He said: "Curtis is back in training. He came back injured but he's better. He did his first training this morning. Is he staying here? I don't know. There's a possibility for an extension of his loan because he wants to play.''

Houllier also hinted that out-of-favour midfielder Stephen Ireland could also return to his plans after not being part of his matchday squad in recent games.

He said: "I still believe Stephen has got great ability. Sometimes it takes more time to settle into a new team. But I trust him at some stage to deliver and show what he can do.''