Report: Shay Given poised to leave Aston Villa to join Middlesbrough

Aston Villa goalkeeper Shay Given is reportedly set to join Middlesbrough.

According to The Telegraph, Aston Villa are set to let Shay Given sign for Middlesbrough on a free transfer - and will immediately target a new goalkeeper.

Given, 39, joined Villa from Manchester City back in 2011, and whilst he had found himself out of favour in recent years, the Republic of Ireland international returned to regular first team football last season.

Villa boss Tim Sherwood handed Given a number of starts in the starting XI towards the end of last season, and it looked like former first choice Brad Guzan would be the one to leave this summer.

However, The Telegraph believe that Given is on the verge of joining Middlesbrough permanently, having spent time on loan with the Championship club in the 2013/14 season.

That will leave Sherwood needing a goalkeeper, and the report states that Villa remain interested in signing Brentford goalkeeper David Button, who worked with Sherwood at Tottenham Hotspur.

Who will be Villa's first choice goalkeeper next season?

Should Villa land Button this summer, then the 26-year-old will be competing with United States international Guzan for the No. 1 jersey.

Guzan has long been Villa's top goalkeeper, but an error against Manchester City at the end of last season cost him his place in the team under Sherwood - and that could now be a long-term matter.

Button is a younger goalkeeper on the up after a strong season with Brentford, and it's plausible that whoever Villa bring in to replace Given - whether it's Button or not - could end up being VIlla's first choice next season.

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