Downing won't commit to Villa

Downing won't commit to Villa

Published May. 26, 2011 11:51 a.m. ET

Stewart Downing has confirmed he won't be signing a new Aston Villa contract "at the moment" - and feels his career is at a "major crossroads".

The England winger enjoyed an excellent campaign for Villa, winning their Player of the Year award.

His form has seen him recalled to the national team set-up, whilst his appearances have caught the eye of a number of clubs.

Earlier this month, it was reported that Villa want to make him the highest paid player at the club, with Liverpool and Arsenal both understood to be keen.


Downing has now confirmed talks have taken place but he is not about to sign a new deal, with two years still remaining on his current contract.

"I know the club are keen for me to extend my contract as I only have two years left on my deal and that my agent had a recent meeting with our chief executive (Paul Faulkner)," Downing confirmed.

"However, I am 26 and at a major crossroads in my career so I won't be committing to a new deal at the moment."

Downing joined Villa in 2009, but he was still recovering from a broken foot so this season has been his first full campaign for the club.

Villa now look to have a fight to hold on to Downing, which will be a huge blow, especially with Ashley Young edging towards the exit door at Villa Park.

Downing further underlined that he could be looking elsewhere when he revealed that he is yearning to play in the Champions League.

"I want to keep playing and enjoying my football," Downing told the Northern Echo.

"When I was injured that made me realise what it can be like to be out for such a long time. It hurt. The most important thing is to play football, but I do want to play in the Champions League at some point.

"The most important thing for me, though, is to stay fit and then the rewards will come with that, hopefully. I have got back into the England squad, I have to make sure I stay there.

"It was horrible to miss the World Cup last year, but I was not the only one. Looking back it was probably because I was injured for much of that season that I never made it."