Man City step up their £30m pursuit of Villa ace - Exclusive
Published 23:00 14/06/10 By James Nursey
Manchester City have stepped up their pursuit of James Milner by telling Aston Villa in face-to-face talks of their determination to sign the England ace.
Mega-rich City had an initial bid of £18million plus £2m in add-ons rejected by Villa last month.
But City are willing to return with another offer for the versatile midfielder as soon as England's World Cup campaign is over.
City chief executive Garry Cook sought out his Villa opposite number Paul Faulkner at the Premier League gathering earlier this month.
The two-day meeting of all Premier League clubs took place on June 3 and 4 at Stapleford Park in the Midlands.
And Cook and Faulkner had private talks at the four star country house hotel after a group meeting with fellow club chiefs.
Villa do not want to sell Milner but are resigned to cashing in if he fails to sign a new long-term contract.
They are refusing to put a price tag on the 24-year-old, but City hope to get their man with an offer of between £27-30m later this summer.
Milner held talks with Faulkner, Villa owner Randy Lerner and manager Martin O'Neill before flying out for the World Cup.
And City hope their ambitions and prospect of a lucrative five-year contract worth nearly £100,000-a-week will prove irresistible.
City intend to try and tie up a deal before Manchester United and Chelsea join in the bidding for the former Newcastle winger, who joined Villa in August 2008 for £12m.
Milner, who has two years left on his £45,000-a-week deal at Villa, has shelved all transfer talk while on international duty at the World Cup.