By Amir Mir
Aston Villa manager Roberto Di Matteo has given his biggest hint that he will sell Micah Richards, Joleon Lescott and Leonardo Bacuna this summer.
The big-name trio all failed to make the starting line-up for the club’s two pre-season friendlies against Worcester and Telford on Saturday.
As reported by Football Insider, the Italian has publicly spoken about trimming his squad and it now seems the experienced trio are on the hit list of the former Chelsea boss.
Richards has failed to make both squads for Saturday afternoon’s double header against the non-league opposition, while Lescott currently finds himself on the bench against Worcester.
Midfielder Bacuna was allowed to travel to Austria for their pre-season tour, but did not feature during their sole game against Austrian minnows GA8 1902 in which 22 players were involved- nor is he part of the squad that is facing non-league opposition on Saturday. A bigger indication that his time at the club is coming to an end.
The 24-year-old’s contract runs until 2020, but he has failed to deliver since his move from Dutch side Groningen in 2013 with lacklustre and technically poor performances.
Former England international Lescott signed a two-year contract from rivals West Brom last summer for a fee of £1million.
The boyhood Villa fan has seen his reputation fall after he played a pivotal part in the club conceding 76 goals last season and as a result getting relegated to the second-tier of English football.
Richards, 28, signed a four-year deal last summer as he was a free transfer for the now departed Tim Sherwood. But the Manchester City academy graduate has seen his performances being heavily criticised from supporters during the last campaign.
The Villa Park supporters will be pleased to hear this news as the trio played a major part in showing a lack of passion, fight and determination last season.
In the latest Aston Villa transfer news, the clubs former flop has joined a Serie A club after being released by Frosinone.