Aston Villa release eight players as Steven Gerrard wields axe having already confirmed £15m Matt Targett to Newcastle | The Sun

ASTON VILLA have released eight players as Steven Gerrard continues reshaping his squad.

The Liverpool legend took over from Dean Smith last November, and is busy preparing for his first full season in charge.

Matt Targett has already been sold to Newcastle for £15million, following his successful loan spell at St James' Park.

Eight players will be let go following the expiry of their contracts later this month – including two former first team regulars.

Ashley Young returned to Villa Park last year, a decade on from originally quitting for Manchester United.

The 36-year-old struggled for regular starts under Gerrard, however, and will be let go.

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Young made 25 appearances for Villa last term, adding to 190 outings in his initial spell.

Another to leave Villa Park is former favourite Conor Hourihane.

The Irish international was initially a regular upon Villa's return to the top flight under Smith, but fell out of favour during the 2020-21 campaign.

He was loaned to Swansea in January 2021, before returning to Villa Park for pre-season last summer.

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After being named an unused substitute for two Premier League matches last August, Hourihane was shunted out on loan again – this time to Sheffield United.

The 31-year-old made 30 appearances for the Blades, as they went on to fall to Nottingham Forest on penalties in the Championship play-off semi-finals.

Six young players have also been released by the Villans.

Mungo Bridge departs having made one senior outing for Villa.

The 21-year-old defender played the full 90 minutes as a young side lost 4-1 to Liverpool in the FA Cup in January 2021.

Hungarian goalkeeper Akos Onodi was between the sticks that day, and has also been released by Gerrard.

Dominic Revan, 21, skippered Villa's first team against the Reds, also making the first team bench a further seven times.

The West Bromwich-born defender has been deemed surplus to requirements and will be let go.

Tristan Abldeen-Goodridge, Paul Appiah and Finley Thorndike have also been released.

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