Carson to go to Villa if Itandje signs

Liverpool goalkeeper Scott Carson looks set at the eleventh hour to have his wish granted and will be allowed to spend another season on-loan elsewhere in the Premiership. Carson spent last season on loan at Charlton, winning their player-of-the-season award and finding himself moving up the England pecking order as a result. Rafa Benítez was unwilling initially to allow him to spend this season out on loan, wanting him as his second-choice keeper, but is now believed to have relented, as long as his move for a replacement is successful.

That replacement is Charles Itandje of French side Lens, who was seen at Anfield yesterday. Lens aren’t expecting a massive fee for the 24-year-old but Rafa wants him signed by tonight’s 11pm deadline for new signings for the Champions League qualifiers. Liverpool play the first leg of their qualifier against Toulouse next week.

21-year-old Carson would then be allowed to move on loan to Aston Villa, who will be delighted to secure the services of a player many feel will be challenging Paul Robinson for the role of first-choice England keeper by the end of the season. Carson was allowed out on loan last season because Rafa Benítez was happy to use Jerzy Dudek as back-up to Pepe Reina, but the Pole was released in the summer at the end of his contract and joined Real Madrid.

Manchester City were also said to be looking at signing Scott Carson, but it seems former England boss Sven Goran Eriksson has now missed out. Liverpool are reluctant to actually sell Carson, and would expect a massive fee in light of recent fees paid in the league for goalkeepers.

Itandje has also been linked with Manchester United this week, but failing a last-minute hijack of the deal he should be a Red by the end of the day. Carson would not be allowed to play for Villa against Liverpool this weekend – loaned players cannot face their own clubs.

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