Wednesday saw the Italian and English sport media report in unison that Pepe Reina was close to an Aston Villa move.

The reports came in thick and fast and the idea was that Reina would leave AC Milan for free, allowing the Serie A side to save the wages they’re contracted to paying him.

From Aston Villa’s perspective it would give them a goalkeeper ready for the Premier League, after they lost Tom Heaton to injury.

Reina would be signing a contract for the rest of the season, which would automatically be extended by a further year if Dean Smith’s side avoided relegation back down to the Championship.

The Spanish slant was that Reina could end his career as he’d always planned, by actually playing games.

On Thursday morning it was suggested in Italy that Reina may be looking for a pay-off of some sort from Milan, which always threatened to complicate things.

His agent Manuel Garcia Quilon was this morning at Milan’s headquarters, and when leaving he was approached by the media. Sky Italia asked him if an agreement had been reached, and he simply said “No”.

Milan want to get cover in first, which will hold things up.