I will not pay extortionate money to get us into the Champions League, says Villa boss O'Neill

Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill has warned he will not pay 'extortionate' money for new
signings to bolster Aston Villa's push for a Champions League spot.

Villa will be looking to cement their place in the top four of the Barclays Premier League when they visit out-of-form Portsmouth tomorrow.

They have won their last five away league games to move three points clear of Arsenal despite having one of the smallest squads in the top flight.

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Emile Heskey

Put your shirt on me: Emile Heskey joined Aston Villa in a £3.5m deal from Wigan

O'Neill is keen to add more than just striker Emile Heskey - poised to make his
Villa debut at Fratton Park - during the current transfer window.

But the former Celtic boss is adamant he will not pay ridiculous amounts for a player before the window closes in just over a week's time.

O'Neill said: 'The fees for players in this window have surprised me and I assume, with the wages that also go with such deals, would be more than a tidy sum.

'If there was a player out there who respresented really great value for the club, and could play a major part in proceedings here for some considerable time, then I would have a look at it.

Martin O'Neill

Prudent: Villa boss Martin O'Neill

'Would I pay over the odds? Yes, I don't mind that which was the case with Ashley Young who has proved great value. Would I pay an extortionate price for someone? No.

'I would do something simply because we have probably the smallest squad in the Premier League. That is despite adding some players last summer.'

O'Neill is looking to Heskey, who signed from Wigan for £3.5million on Friday, to give Villa a different dimension up front in the absence of the injured John Carew.

He said: 'Emile will give us another option. He can play with Gabby and John when
he is back fit. He will be excellent for us.'

Villa defender Luke Young will return against Pompey after serving a one-game ban in the FA Cup goalless draw at Doncaster for incurring five bookings this season.

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