Writer: J P Fear
Date:Tuesday July 18 2006
Transcript of the interview on Sky Sports News last night.
Jonathan, can you enlighten us, what is going on?
I wish I could. I just wish that someone at Aston Villa would for once in their lives would stop lying and tell us the truth.
I agree with Rambo, the whole thing is just a circus. We've been turned into a joke of a club and the only people not laughing are the fans and shareholders of AVFC.
What is the root problem here though?
The root problem is Doug Ellis, it has been for many years.
I call Doug the menace of B6, he is a danger to himself and a danger to the club and the way he has dragged the club down and the way he has continued even at the age of 82 and ill health is totally undignified.
Why is he a danger to the club?
Because there is just no leadership. When he first took over we had won the league and the European cup, now I've noticed with the bookies we are 9/2 favourites for next season. We used to be 9/2 to win the league, now those odds are for relegation and that is what Doug Ellis has turned us into.
Is it all about lack of spending? Is this the nub of it?
It isn't just about money, money has been spent but it has usually been recouped by sales of players, we have never really built on a squad. It is also about a lack of direction as we go from one problem to another. Doug isn't capable of being pro-active, he just reacts when something happens. Unfortunately the situation we find ourselves in now he has no one but himself to blame. Shareholders have had no dividends for years now but he still pays himself a £50k bonus each year. The penny pinching is rife and it has been for years, the stories that have been in the press and when you talk to players and ex players it isn't just this season that the penny pinching has been happening no matter how much he denies it and says everything is rosy and no matter how much the manager or players come out and say no everything is alright, it clearly isn't and it certainly wasn't last season on the pitch and if everything was alright then you would have to start looking at the players and asking well what happened then?
So you are not happy with Ellis?
Not happy at all with Ellis and not happy at the situation at the club.
Are you happy with David O'Leary?
Well, (pause!) I think the fans are very...... well, no, people aren't happy with DOL but the main problem at Aston Villa that has to be addressed is the person in charge because it is all well and good us sacking yet another manager - O'Leary is the 13th - an appropriate number for him I must admit, but we don't trust Doug Ellis to bring in another manager.
And then compensation would have to be paid if O'Leary left?
Yes and if there is no money they can't pay compensation which makes you wonder if Doug Ellis is doing other things to get DOL to resign.
Are there any shareholders that you know of tonight who want Ellis to remain in power?
I can't talk for all shareholders but the vast majority of people involved with Aston Villa want Doug Ellis to leave. He says he doesn't want to leave until he is in a box but he has got to go and he has to go now.
So what next, the players want a meeting with Doug, do you and the other shareholders want to hear from Doug Ellis now?
I think there has got to be clarity, I believe he isn't even in the country at the moment when all this is happening so you have to ask how committed is he and how capable is he and I'm sorry but he just isn't. He is even hiding behind a takeover that isn't happening, the Comers interest went many months ago but Ellis is still saying he can't say anything because of a takeover situation - well there is no bid so there is no situation. So Dougy Ellis, you've got to come out and tell the truth and so has the manager and so have the players.
Is Villa a club in crisis?
It is sadly in crisis and it is such a shame because we are a massive club but the way we are being run we are in the third tier of clubs within the Premiership. The potential is massive so we need the consortiums that everyone are whispering about to come forward now, there has never been a better time to come in and try to get power.
Date:Tuesday July 18 2006
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