By Amir Mir
QPR goalkeeper Alex Smithies has stated that he “didn’t pay attention” to speculation linking him with a move to Aston Villa in January.
The 26-year-old also revealed in West London Sport that he would “certainly like to sign a new contract” at the west London club.
Smithies is a key member of Ian Holloway’s side as the highly-rated shot-stopper has played 31 games for the Championship club this season.
He has not played at the highest level of English football and his deal at Loftus Road is set to expire in 2018.
This was Smithies verdict on a new contract and his response to the speculation linking him to Villa Park last month.
“I would certainly like to sign a new contract and I believe the club want me to sign one too, so I think everything is progressing on that front,” Smithies told West London Sport.
“Nothing happens overnight in that respect but I’m hoping to get it done. It’s definitely progressing.
“I don’t pay attention to it really. I don’t massively read the media.
“People might tell me about things but I don’t take much notice of it – I know when I’ve been playing well and when I’ve not.”
Smithies has kept five clean sheets for the Hoops this term, conceding 44 goals, including during the 1-0 home defeat against Villa in December.
During the January transfer window, Villa added eight players to their ranks, including Manchester United keeper Sam Johnstone, who made a loan switch till the end of the season.
Steve Bruce’s side are struggling in the bottom half of the Championship table on 36 points from their 30 games, two points ahead of QPR.
The last time Villa kept a clean sheet was against the London-based club and the duo are set to meet for the reverse fixture on April 4.
Now, the Midlands club will be hoping to stop their winless run in 2017 when they take on Barnsley at Villa Park on Tuesday night.
In other Aston Villa transfer news, a BBC pundit believes this senior player should train away from the main group.