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Thanks From Villa Fans Combined

Thanks From Villa Fans Combined

A VFC 'thank you'

As you know, Villa Fans Combined has, as promised, now disbanded.

Our aim all along was for 'Root and Branch change' in the way Aston Villa is run. That change is now irrevocably under way.

VFC was always about trying to get the voice of the ordinary fan listened to in the wider world, with the hope that our passionate desire to see the best for our football club was given the best possible chance to be picked up by potential investors in, or new owners of, our club.

So many Villa fans have for so long been frustrated that the club was under-achieving and could have been so much more than it was.

It now looks like the supporters - the true and permanent owners of the Aston Villa flame - will see their dreams given a chance to prosper.

We'd like to say a heartfelt 'thank you' to the thousands of people that supported, encouraged, cajoled, provided constructive criticism, took part in and helped our efforts beyond the call of duty.

Each and every one of you can be enormously proud that your actions have helped to change the way the club is perceived and has helped to create an environment whereby new owners enthusiastically embrace their stewardship of Aston Villa.

Along with many other factors (like Old Father Time and a lorra lorra money), incessant pressure from supporters has played some part in persuading Mr Ellis that his time in charge of Aston Villa is over. It's your club, it always will be. Enjoy the future you richly deserve.

It's not possible to thank everyone by name, there are simply too many of you, but particular thanks are due to the following people: -

Dennis Mortimer - a true Villa legend.
Buck Chinn - who fought the good fight for what seems like a couple of centuries.
Dr Carl Chinn MBE - who brought people together and was the catalyst for what followed.
Howard Hodgson - for his time and efforts in producing the Hodgson Report (and for buying JF lunch once! ;)
Ian Taylor - the 'testimonial night' was fantastic.
Jonny Gould - a broadcasting legend!
Bruce Langham - for showing the respect to talk to us, a true gent who would have done good things for Villa given time.
Graham Taylor - for trying to fight the Villa corner.
John Gregory - for the 'Doug is in a timewarp' quote!
Brian Travers - for taking the time to offer his support in a statement for our very first meeting.

The many sites and editors who helped, John Cresswell and Peter Bosworth of , Mike Field of and Dave Woodhall of Heroes & Villains who might not have always agreed with our stance, but never refused to print any VFC articles in his fanzine. And a few who helped JF on when his time was taken elsewhere (you know who you are).

A big thank you to the press who mostly, apart from one local paper, gave us a very fair hearing. We all do believe that spokesman JF has the sort of face better suited to radio. Thanks to you all, especially the many Villans amongst you (and there are a lot of you!), oh, and our mate Tom Ross, I'm sure he is a Villa fan really?!

Denis Box, Rob Carson, Andrew Carson, Ian Robathan, all those that are current and past members of the Aston Villa Shareholders Association, people at the Trust, again we've not always seen eye to eye, but at least you all got up off your backsides to try to bring about change. Paul Barnes, Rob Dore, David Vale, Mike McKenna, Lee Lindsey, Matthew Lingard, Peter Cross, Chris Butcher, John Holder, Keith Bowen, Nigel George, Kieran Devaney and so many more. Please forgive us if we didn't name you, some can't be named but know the help they've been, others will just have to forgive us for their omission.

The players who put that 'joint' statement out, we salute you!

And of-course, Randy Lerner and his merry men, we all join to wish you every success, you're custodians of a mighty and magnificant club.

Yours with thanks from the VFC

Navid Nazir, David Carson, Nigel Ashford, Peter Bland, Jonathan Fear

Writer:J P Fear
Date:Thursday August 17 2006
Time: 3:22PM


Aren't we all taking this victory lap a little bit early? I know the deal with Lerner has been signed and will be through shortly but shouldn't we be waiting for Randy to take office first before we drink all the champagne?
17/08/2006 15:33:00
Feels like leaving school all over again... whens the after school party with all the fit school girls takin place?
17/08/2006 15:35:00
Looking at the takeover documents it is spelled out quite clearly that at least part of the cost of the takeover will be funded by loans. RAL is to issue £33 million in loan notes to RALLC. In other words it will borrow £33m from its US parent. Interest on these loan notes will be about 7%. Again, the take over document makes it clear that this interest will be paid by dividends from Aston Villa. So that's about £2.3 million going out of the club each year. Now, in my view that is a price worth paying to get rid of Herbert. Nevertheless we should realise that Lerner is not Abramovitch. There will be no bottomless pit of money.
chocolate teapot
17/08/2006 15:52:00
no ooahpaulmcgrath, the change is coming, the era of Doug is over and so are VFC. Been dying for this day for a long time, contrary to some suggestions, it brings no joy doing protests etc. Oh, and there is always good reason to drink champagne isn't there?!
The Fear
17/08/2006 16:00:00
Its great that Randy Lerner will be coming in, but when will he officially become the owner?
17/08/2006 16:13:00
Is it just me, or has Jonathan been drinking Champagne for about ten days now?
17/08/2006 16:14:00
Yes he seems to have been but so has everyone because they are excited about the takeover
17/08/2006 16:17:00
When will Randy become owner?
17/08/2006 16:19:00
Sounds like you've already finished a few bottles Mr. Fear. I'm keeping mine on ice till it's all done and dusted. This is Aston Villa we're talking about.
17/08/2006 16:28:00
No, just the one, toasted the bid on the evening. Thought it would give me an excuse to get another if and when the takeover happened.

The when question has a longer answer! Briefly (and words of Mr Box) Once Lerner gets to 75% he is considered to be "in ownership" of the plc and must then try to buy the remaining shares. Once he gets to 90% he can order a compulsary purchase of all remaining shares... end. If not other bids come in during the next few days, and enough shares are being sent back quickly, the takeover could, I believe, be fairly quick.
The Fear
17/08/2006 16:35:00
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