Aston Villa owner Tony Xia can sell shares to raise funds

Dr Tony Xia and Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce
Dr Tony Xia (right) bought Aston Villa in June 2016, and appointed Steve Bruce as manager the following October

Aston Villa owner Tony Xia could sell his shares, or put the Championship side up for sale, as he searches for investment options to help the club.

It is reported Villa need about £40m to comply with Financial Fair Play.

Earlier this month Villa reached an agreement with HM Revenue & Customs after missing a £4m payment, but another is due at the end of the week.

Documents on Companies House show shares can be sold and a restriction on Villa's sale has been lifted.

The documents, which now allow new investment to be generated either by the sale of shares or the club, were signed on 25 May - the day before the play-off final at Wembley.

Chinese businessman Xia, 41, warned of "severe Financial Fair Play challenges" after Villa lost to Fulham in the Championship play-off final in May, costing them a potential £160m in future revenue.

Villa have invested heavily in players over the past two years, and will receive a reduced Premier League parachute payment of about £15m next season.

Xia bought the club from American Randy Lerner for £76m in June 2016.

Meanwhile, former chief executive Keith Wyness is suing Villa for constructive dismissal after being suspended and then leaving the club.

Villa could be forced to pay over £6m in compensation if Wyness wins his case.