Aston Villa subject of £150m takeover from ex-Chelsea director

Aston Villa fans hold aloft a flag
Aston Villa will play Arsenal in this year's FA Cup final

Aston Villa are the subject of a takeover bid by a group of investors led by former Chelsea business director Paul Smith.

The bid to current owner Randy Lerner is believed to be for around £150m.

It is understood that ex-Arsenal player Tony Adams would be brought in to work on football matters if the takeover is successful but would not pose a threat to current Villa boss Tim Sherwood.

"I haven't heard anything. It's out of my hands," said Sherwood.

"I know Tony but only through playing. He's a good guy, I have a lot of respect for Tony.

"If the club's up for sale a decision will be made if a fee is agreed but Randy has given me no indication he's lost any enthusiasm for this job. He's excited about what's happening at the moment."

Tony Adams takes part in the charity football match for Arsenal Legends XI in 2013
Tony Adams made over 500 appearances for Arsenal and has managed Wycombe and Portsmouth

Villa were put up for sale last May by current owner Randy Lerner.

The American, who completed a £62.6m takeover of the club in 2006, announced his intention to sell, stating that he "owed it to Villa to move on, and look for fresh, invigorated leadership, if in my heart I feel I can no longer do the job."

It is also understood that Lerner will only commit to a sale if the FA Cup finalists avoid relegation, with the club currently two points above the Premier League drop zone with three games to go.

"Smith is an expert in the field of sports rights and is backed by several highly respectable blue-chip investors and his bid is being treated seriously in the city," BBC Sport Midlands correspondent Pat Murphy told BBC Radio 5 Live.

Aston Villa Premier League positions under Randy Lerner
SeasonPositionPoints
2006-0711th50
2007-086th60
2008-096th62
2009-106th64
2010-119th48
2011-1216th38
2012-1315th41
2012-1315th38
2013-1415th41

"He has been interested in taking over Villa for nearly a year, drawing on his expertise as the former group business affairs director at Chelsea more than a decade ago, overseeing some huge sponsorship deals, working closely with Jose Mourinho, Peter Kenyon and Roman Abramovich.

"He has also been the senior executive at IMG and fulfils Mr Lerner's desire to sell to someone who knows and respects Aston Villa and has a global view of the club."

In February, Lerner sacked Paul Lambert as Villa manager and replaced him with former Tottenham boss Sherwood, who has since won seven of his 14 games in charge in all competitions.

Villa were sixth three seasons running under manager Martin O'Neill, but have only finished in the top half of the table once in the four campaigns since his resignation in August 2010 and avoided relegation last season.

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