Aston Villa sign Barnsley midfielder Conor Hourihane

Aston Villa have signed midfielder Conor Hourihane from fellow-Championship side Barnsley for an undisclosed fee.

Hourihane has been in fine form this season, contributing five goals and 11 assists for Barnsley, and was a member of the club’s League One promotion-winning side last season.

The Irishman, who joined Barnsley from Plymouth Argyle in 2014, made a total of 131 appearances for the Tykes, scoring 32 goals.

He joins former Barnsley team-mate James Bree, who also left the Yorkshire club for Villa earlier this week.

Hourihane said on Twitter: “It’s an absolute honour to have signed for @AVFCOfficial. Thank you for all the warm messages. Can’t wait to get going!! #UTV”

He also wished his former club all the best: “From the bottom of my heart than you to everyone at @bfc_official for the last 2 and a half years. We’ve shared some amazing memories…”

“I wish the club nothing but success. Now that I’m a Villa player I’m a Barnsley supporter!! Thank you again!!”

Hull City sack Mike Phelan

Struggling Premier League side Hull City have sacked head coach Mike Phelan.

The decision was made to relieve Phelan of his duties after the 3-1 defeat to West Brom, a result which left Hull bottom of the Premier League.

Phelan took charge of Hull in the summer initially on a caretaker basis, before being given the job full-time in October.

However, the former Manchester United assistant manager won just three of the 20 league games during his five-month tenure.

The club said on Twitter: “We would like to thank Mike for his efforts both as assistant manager and head coach over the last two years.”

Assistant manager Neil McDonald, goalkeeping coach Bobby Mimms and chief scout Stan Ternent have also left the club.