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Villa chairman Lerner upbeat after controversial McLeish meeting

Aston Villa chairman Randy Lerner was pleased with their meeting with Alex McLeish yesterday.

PA Sport says Lerner held positive and productive discussions with the Scot earlier in the day, according to sources close to Villa.

Lerner has identified McLeish as a prime candidate to replace Gerard Houllier, who left Villa at the start of the month.

McLeish quit Villa's local rivals Birmingham on Sunday and has flown back from a family holiday in Corsica to speak with Lerner.

Villa believe they are entitled to talk to McLeish as to their mind he is a "free agent".

The stance taken by Birmingham is somewhat different, and they are still hoping to obtain £5.4million in compensation for the remaining two years of McLeish's contract.

 It's kicking off again! Click here for your No1 source for Aston Villa transfer market news and gossip.

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