Writer: J P Fear
Date:Sunday October 30 2005
With the news of an expected £64m takeover by Irish based property company Comer Homes Group, (valued at £1bn), is it now time to start getting excited?
Reports suggest that both Ellis and Petchey are willing to sell their stakes in the club for around £5.60 per share and the deal could be completed this week.
Although Ellis will apparently stay on as a non executive, it will effectively mean his tight grip on the club will be ended.
Villa Fans Combined spokesman Jonathan Fear said: 'It is fantastic news for the club. The foundations have been there for quite some time. We've had a lot of chances to push on and the board haven't taken them. If they have negotiated a deal with the spending power that reports are claiming then, with the foundations in place, we should not only start competing for Europe - but also compete once we are there.'
'The whole place has had an air of stagnation about it in recent years and the Boltons and Charltons have not only caught us up but have overtaken Villa. The start of this season is the worst we have had in the Premiership. It is not good enough for a club of our size and the fans have very much started voting with their feet. With a new group coming in, with a fresh impetus, I think the fans will come flocking back.'
Having been asked about Ellis:
'He knows his health is poor and must know at the age of 82 that it is time to move over. He might be a lot of things but he is not an idiot. He can see that results are not happening and the club is in stagnation. It will be fascinating to see who the new chairman will be.'
Also, with the team struggling:
'If you look at some of the players O'Leary said he wanted to sign, there are a lot of decent players there and they would have done our team the world of good. You can go back to Paul Robinson and Alan Smith and this summer there was Scott Parker among others. This is very positive news.'
'Villa have spoken about the Champions League, but with the level of spending, the club has had, it was never going to be an option. The fans no longer have any belief that the club is moving forward so with a new group, at last, everyone will have big sigh of relief and move forward. Hopefully it is the dawning of a new era.'
Date:Sunday October 30 2005
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