Lerner offers free tickets

Lerner's decision is a gesture of gratitude after manager Martin O'Neill praised the fans who travelled to Leicester in the last round of the competition. "The manager was overwhelmed by the fantastic support we had and made the chairman aware of that," a spokesman revealed. "This is his way of trying to help the fans get down to Stamford Bridge."

Villa progressed to the fourth round with a 3-2 win at the Walkers Stadium, needing to call on all their reserves as Gabriel Agbonlahor sealed secured their passage in the last minute of extra-time.