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Aston Villa had a howler with Gary Cahill sale

Aston Villa are a prestigious club, and one of the most decorated in English football.

They have lifted plenty of silverware, although it has not been since 1996 that they last won a major honour, namely the League Cup.

Despite this lack of success in the modern era, they are a club who have boasted some incredible talent at various points in their recent history.

Supporters will not soon forget the quality of Christian Benteke, Fabian Delph and Jack Grealish in a hurry, but one who might go somewhat under the radar is Gary Cahill.

Having come through the Villa academy, the centre-back featured just 31 times across four years in the first team.

Clearly deemed not good enough at a time when Martin Laursen and Olof Mellberg held down starting spots, he was sold for just £5m to Bolton Wanderers in January 2008. It was likely chalked up as a good piece of business, and the Midlands club moved on without him.

Should Aston Villa have sold Gary Cahill?





However, after impressing for four years in Lancashire, Premier League giants Chelsea came calling.

The £7m fee paid was already an increase on what Villa initially got, but what he would go on to achieve would rub further salt into their wounds. Cahill became a mainstay for the Blues, featuring 290 times for six different permanent managers.

The 36-year-old led an illustrious career and eventually became captain of a club which won two Premier Leagues, two FA Cups, two Europa Leagues, one League Cup and the coveted Champions League during his time in west London.

He became something of a legend at Stamford Bridge, with Thierry Henry labelling him “a leader” whose versatility had surprised him.

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David Ginola at Aston Villa

First up, who did Aston Villa sign David Ginola from in 2000?

To think just how far Cahill has come, from a Villa reject to winning almost every trophy possible in club football, suggests that the Midlands club may have made a mistake all those years ago.

He eventually left Chelsea to join Crystal Palace, admitting his sadness in an emotional interview before detailing: “I’m proud of what I’ve done here and what I’ve achieved in such a short space of time.”

His career is certainly one which should inspire pride, whilst those who frequent Villa Park will instead feel a regret that it was not them who he inspired to glory.