John Gregory On Villa Fans Passion
The longer John Gregory has been away from Villa Park, the more I've appreciated what he did for us. To get us into the top seven and keep us there with the restrictions at Villa was no mean feet. Funny, we were all moaning saying it wasn't enough, but look what we've had since! His style did become more negative towards the end which many of us didn't enjoy, but when he left and explained that he was in fear of his job every day, you could understand why he set us up to firstly be very hard to beat!
Anyway the former Villa boss has been quoted in today's Birmingham Post saying:
'Villa fans are very passionate, but they're also quite willing to put up with things and it takes a lot for them to turn on a manager. I've had a long association with the club and I've never known Villa fans turn on a manager ever, regardless of the position. Villa were 16th in the table when Doug Ellis fired Ron Atkinson, but the fans were still supporting him. They loved Ron to bits, because he was one of them but I reckon David has made a monumental PR error in distancing himself from the fans.'
He also says the reason why Blues fans haven't turned so much on Steve Bruce is because 'they feel he is really passionate about the job, the club and about the fans. They respect that but I don't think David has done enough to get close. They've put it up with it all and now they've finally turned on him.'
'Aston Villa are not as big as Manchester United or Arsenal but they're still a huge club. In terms of support and stature, they're arguably in the top six or seven and you always expect Villa to be at least in a Uefa Cup challenging position. And when Villa haven't been in the top six or seven, that's when they've normally done away with their manager.'
Looks like there will be some very big decisions to make at the end of the season, not sure I rate the ability of the current chairman to be trusted with the decision though.
I've added a poll asking about John Gregory.