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It all started with Teamtalk a couple of days ago and has spread across the media, even as far as the Birmingham Mail, that we are keen to sign Aston Villa’s Ashley Westwood this summer.

I suppose, right now, we should be thankful it isn’t Gabriel Agbonlahor, but when I saw the news I thought it was a re-run of a failed Jimmy Mullen bid for a player back in 1995.

Burnley had been relegated and Mullen was keen to add Manchester United’s 18-year-old defender Ashley Westwood to his squad. He hadn’t featured for United in the Premier League but, in any case, he turned us down and instead signed for Crewe where he went straight into the first team. Mullen’s reaction was to sign Peter Swan.

Westwood went on to play for Bradford City in their promotion season to the Premier League and stayed with them for a further year before moving on to Sheffield Wednesday. He played for a number of lower league clubs after that before playing his last game for Northampton and he’s now the head coach of a club in India.

That was the Ashley Westwood who first came into my mind when I saw the speculation but, in fact, it is Crewe’s other Ashley Westwood, the midfielder now with Villa.

The now 26-year-old midfielder made over 120 league appearances for Crewe before moving to Aston Villa four years ago. He’s gone on to play over 120 league games for Villa too and scored both their goals in a 4-2 home defeat against Southampton last Saturday, the first of which is shown. He can’t be considered a regular scorer; these were his first of the season for Villa and took his total for them to just five.

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