CL play-offs interest O’Neill

Aston Villa boss Martin O'Neill has given a cautious welcome to the idea of introducing a play-off for England's fourth Champions League qualifying spot.

The Premier League is considering adding a new play-off format to add extra spice to the end of the season, with O'Neill's side currently in a position which would benefit.

He told the club's official website:"Actually I think it's quite interesting. I wouldn't knock it on the head immediately, particularly if we finish seventh!

"It really is kind of interesting. I know the teams that finish fourth would be kind of galled if that was the case.

"But if you knew the rules in advance and, in other words, they weren't just going to spring it upon you if they decide to do it, at least you'd know at the start of the season and you'd know the parameters.

"It's a constant struggle the Premier League. It seems rather glamorous, but for us it's a constant struggle.

"You always feel as if relegation's haunting you and you want to get into a middle section, then certainly at the end of the season there could still be a charge for the spot and I wouldn't dismiss it immediately.

"It's interesting to see what the whole Premier League club-wise thought about it because it has to be (agreed by) 14 clubs. I would say outside the top sides I think people might go for it."

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