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Aston Villa try to stem outgoing tide with new Vlaar contract

Aston Villa have extended an offer to Ron Vlaar.

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Eleven months ago, Ron Vlaar made a name for himself as one of the best defenders in the world during last summer's World Cup. It was widely speculated that he would, at some point, join forces with his former Dutch manager Louis van Gaal at Manchester United. Then January came and Vlaar was injured. And he stayed injured. And then he came back and played worse than had Ciaran Clark and Jores Okore.

So yeah, it's not been a good year for Vlaar. He's gone from being one of the hottest commodities in football to being the third-choice defender at a club who barely survived in the Premier League. With his contract up at the end of this month, Vlaar could still likely get a job somewhere else, but Aston Villa have decided to try and nab him while they can. In amidst the list of released players today was news that Villa have offered Vlaar a new contract.

On skill alone, I wouldn't mind seeing Vlaar play elsewhere. He's injury-prone and lately has been mistake-prone, too. But given the fact that Tom Cleverley has already left and Christian Benteke, Andi Weimann, and Libor Kozak are likely to follow, I'd be happy to see Vlaar stick around. Tim Sherwood has enough work to do this summer without having to worry about finding yet another central defender.

So hopefully Vlaar takes the offer. If he doesn't, it's just another thing on the shopping list for Sherwood.