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Romeu would welcome Villa signing next month

Chelsea midfielder Oriol Romeu would welcome the signing of David Villa with open arms if the prolific Spain international ends up moving to Stamford Bridge during the transfer window.

Chelsea have been closely linked with a move for the 31-year-old striker, who has been in and out of the Barcelona starting line-up this season since returning from his long injury lay-off after breaking his leg.

Barca sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta said this week the Nou Camp outfit had no intention of letting Villa leave in January, but Romeu would be delighted if his fellow Spaniard did make the switch to Chelsea.

“I don’t know what Villa’s situation is, but if a great player like him comes, the record goalscorer with the national team, he would be welcomed and we would be happy,” Romeu, who earlier this month underwent surgery on a serious knee injury, was quoted as telling Spanish radio show Esports Cope.

Barca midfielder Andres Iniesta hopes Villa stays put, telling reporters: “I don’t know if there’s a chance (he could leave), I don’t think so, although for me personally I wouldn’t like it if he did, because Villa is a vital player.”

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