Michael Neville Withdraws
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Michael Neville Withdraws

Michael Neville Withdraws

Statement by Michael Neville and Aston Villa Investments Limited (AVIL) concerning the takeover bid for Aston Villa Football Club

For Immediate Release

Since the formal bid was submitted by Randy Lerner to the Board of AVFC on the 14th August 2006 and subsequently accepted and endorsed, the consortium and I have spent many hours considering our position and whether to push forward with a bid or to bow out gracefully.

I did say publicly a few weeks ago that I hoped to put an official offer in for the club, but if my approach wasn`t successful, that my overriding wish was that someone would gain control who had the overall resources to take the club forward, and that they would have my absolute and total support. All I have ever wanted is to see Aston Villa return to their rightful place competing for honours both domestically and in Europe.

I have worked extremely hard for the last year to fulfil the dream of being involved with Aston Villa football club, and whilst the financial structure and backing was there to complete a transaction, the structure of that financing was not acceptable to the consortium or me.

It is clear that the overwhelming majority of supporters believe that Randy Lerner`s bid offers Aston Villa Football Club the most exciting future and a potential return to glory. After so many years of disappointment and mediocrity the ever-loyal Villa supporters deserve to see the club achieving the highest honours. I have come to the conclusion that together with the brilliant Martin O`Neill as manager, Randy Lerner and his team have the right credentials, the necessary finances and the pooled resources to restore the club to where all of us supporters want to see it, and with that in mind, I have decided to end my consortiums approach in order not to jeopardise the takeover in any way. I would also call upon all other potential bidders to stand aside and allow the will of the supporters to prevail. The transfer window will close soon and Martin O`Neill needs as much time as possible to strengthen the squad, and prepare for the new campaign.

I have tried to be been open and honest throughout this campaign, and have enjoyed my communications with the fans and trustee groups and would thank them for their advice and encouragement in the takeover attempt. I hope that in some way the AVIL consortium will be seen at the very least as acting as a catalyst in bringing forward other bidders.

I would also encourage everyone to thank Doug Ellis for his massive contribution to Aston Villa, he has been at the helm for a long time, and this club has the most fantastic foundation of any Premiership club, its there to be built upon, and to deliver the dream that he has begun and worked and toiled at for so long.

I want to formally extend to Randy Lerner and his team the very best of luck and would ask him to help take the club back to the very top. We Villans are very proud of the Claret and Blue and will expect to see Villa challenging the top four once again. I would also remind him that the fans of Aston Villa are second to none, and deserve nothing but respect for standing by the club during its lean years. I don`t think Randy Lerner will have ever experienced anything as exciting as a "full to the rafters" Villa Park.

I regret not being the person to bring forward the winning bid but I am confident the incoming group will do great things for our club both now and in the future.

Issued by Michael Neville on behalf of Aston Villa Investments Limited (AVIL)

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Writer:J P Fear
Date:Thursday August 24 2006
Time: 10:28AM


Thank you Mr Neville for getting the ball rolling.
24/08/2006 19:26:00
To quantify my last question, I've read various tabloid comics speculating about what's happening but thought I'd ask if anybody (Fear ?) has the definitive answer regarding the situation.
24/08/2006 19:07:00
Is it true that if AV06 or Still do not put in a counter bid as of midnight tonight then it's all over and Randy's in?
24/08/2006 19:00:00
Never been sure how genuine Neville really was. Didn't approve of all his actions, and think he should definitely have come clean over the ending of the Comers interest.
24/08/2006 18:26:00
Thank you, at last. If you had been more "up-front" with your sources of finance from the start, there would have been less hosatility towards you. Perhaps, even support for your proposal. All the Villa fans ever wanted was for someone to take the Club, who they could trust. We think we have found that person in Randy Lerner. UP THE VILLA
24/08/2006 17:11:00
If its first statements were more like this then he might have got somewhere. Fair play for trying, cant fault him for having a go, i wouldnt have begrudged him too much if he did get control, but for me, Lerner is just too exciting an opportunity not to wantq
24/08/2006 16:59:00
Fair play to the bloke, he thought he had the plans in place to be able to live the dream. I'm sure every single on eof us would have done the same if we thought we could.
24/08/2006 14:45:00
I had a funny feeling about him all the time, I am not sure if he ever had the funds and it was just a dream (like us all). Especially with the financing line. But who know what might have happened had he not been involved and pushing from last year. So well bowed out sir.
NY Villa
24/08/2006 14:30:00
Lets hope Villa can push on now, lets get the new faces we need and put our great club where it belongs.Heres to a great future.
silkie villain
24/08/2006 13:59:00
Ithink neville should be on the board under lerner, I think that would suit everyone, lerner= money and business then neville= villa at heart which lerner as admitted he is not. It would be a gr8 idea but cannot see it happening, cheers neville for all the hard work. The neville and lerner stand all the way instead of ellis stand
24/08/2006 13:42:00
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