Villa - The Next Big Thing
Martin Samuel of the Times has come up with a blinding article on Aston Villa. It would be a great idea if every Villa fan prints it off or buys the paper and sends a copy to Doug Ellis, Villa Park, Aston, Birmingham, B6 6HE.
Villa have the opportunity to become the Next Big Thing
Samuel, a well respected football journalist, is saying that Villa could be the next big thing, suggesting that we are - as we always say - a massive club who are just being mismanaged. This backs up Sir Alex Ferguson who is quoted in his auto-biog as saying he had expected Villa to be Manchester United's main competitors in the 90's. It also backs up Dean Saunders who said that 'Villa are as big as Liverpool, they just don't know it'.
Just a few quotes from the article:
THERE is a reason that the crisis at Aston Villa might not be as dramatic as it first appears: deep down, everybody wants in. Not the players, maybe; or the manager; or the chairman, for that matter, who is 82 and clearly exhausted.
In fact, it is fair to say that of the present owners, management and staff of Villa, the vast majority behave as if they are trying to work their ticket, and the sooner the better.
But beyond the boundaries of Birmingham B6, in the world of would-be investors, unemployed managers and footballers with itchy feet and wives and agents to keep in the luxury to which they are accustomed, a different Aston Villa exists, one picked over in private and repositioned in the league table and the marketplace by men who all reach the same conclusion: I`d have some of that. This is not just idle gossip. No one talks that way about Newcastle United, for instance.
It may be that the price needs to be right, the owner has to be changed, a new manager must come in, or better players will have to be signed, but everyone has a reason for viewing Villa as the Next Big Thing.
He goes on to quote Sven who pointed out Aston Villa to what turned out to be a "fake sheikh" in a newspaper sting.
He also says that Martin O'Neil has turned down Newcastle, Leeds United and Middlesbrough but With a different board in place, he would not rule out Aston Villa. Few ambitious managers would.
Whether David O`Leary and his players have behaved correctly is a side issue; their instincts when protesting are right because it is impossible for the club to progress with Ellis in charge unless he changes policy, which, at his age, seems unlikely.