James Milner has set a 48-hour deadline for Manchester City to complete his transfer from Aston Villa, according to reports.
Milner is willing to play in Villa’s Europa League play-off match at Rapid Vienna on Thursday if his switch to City hasn’t gone through by then, a move that would prevent Milner from playing for City in that competition if he was to subsequently join the Eastlands club.
Villa caretaker manager Kevin MacDonald said: “If James hasn’t gone to Manchester City by the middle of the week, I’m sure he’ll want to play, because he just loves playing football.”
City have been pursuing Milner for most of the summer and last week appeared set to sign him, but their own player Stephen Ireland has refused to agree to head in the other direction unless he receives a £2 million pay-off, which City are not willing to pay.
Milner played for Villa in their opening Premier League fixture on Saturday, scoring in a 3-0 home win over West Ham.