Mid-Day Ticker: Villa talking new deal with Guzan, Henry gets a statue and more

Mid-Day Ticker: Villa talking new deal with Guzan, Henry gets a statue and more

Americans Abroad

Mid-Day Ticker: Villa talking new deal with Guzan, Henry gets a statue and more

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Photo by Howard C. Smith/ISIphotos.com

After three years as a backup, Brad Guzan will make his first Premier League start on Saturday for Aston Villa, and the club is already in the process of trying to extend his stay at Villa Park before his current deal expires this summer.

According to the Birmingham Mail, Guzan has entered into contract talks with Villa and manager Alex McLeish about lengthening his time at the club. 

"We'd been talking about a new contract anyway, and I guess that will probably be talked about in the coming few weeks," McLeish said. "This is a challenge for him now coming in and a good opportunity for him to show how good he is.

"He's extremely unlucky to have been understudying some great goalkeepers, but now his chance has come."

Here are a few more items from around the soccer world:

HENRY GETS STATUE AT EMIRATES

New York Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry enjoyed the best years of his club career at Arsenal, and he was honored with a bronze statue of him outside of Emirates Stadium as part of the club's 125th anniversary celebration.

Henry, who became Arsenal's all-time leading goalscorer with 226 in his eight years in London, was present for the unveiling of the statue, according to the club's official website.

A photo of the statue can be seen here.

WHITECAPS CEO STEPPING DOWN

Vancouver Whitecaps CEO Paul Barber will be leaving his post at the end of February, the club announced on Friday.

Barber, 44, joined the organization in Feb., 2010, from Tottenham, and he helped transition the club during its MLS expansion phase.  

His responsibilities will be split between club COO Rachel Lewis and president Bob Lenarduzzi for the time being.

IMPACT KEEP SUTTON

The Montreal Impact appear to be set at the goalkeeper position.

The club signed Greg Sutton to an MLS deal on Friday, bringing the Quebec native back to the club. He joined Montreal on loan from the New York Red Bulls in July and made one appearance for the then-NASL side.

Sutton should compete with Evan Bush for minutes behind expected starter Donovan Ricketts.

BALOTELLI'S BROTHER GETS STOKE TRIAL

If you thought one Balotelli presented never-ending entertainment in the Premier League, imagine the possibilities if there were two.

Mercurial Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli's younger brother, Enoch, is on trial at Stoke City, where the club is considering a move for the 19-year-old. He had been reportedly training with the club for the last few weeks and played in a mid-week match with the Potters' reserves.

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Do you want to see Guzan stay at Aston Villa or go elsewhere this summer? What do you think of Henry's statue? Do you think Sutton can press Ricketts for starters' minutes? The more Balotellis the merrier?

Share your thoughts below.

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