Writer: J P Fear
Date:Wednesday November 1 2006
For so long Villa fans, most, anyway, longed for the day when there would be a new owner, allied to a new and half decent manager.
ell you may have noticed it came to pass but amongst the fog of euphoria, many have advocated a wait and be patient philosophy, the Prozac dream.
It goes like this ' we can't expect things to change overnight, we need to be patient, sit back, support the club without question, be glad its all gone through, be glad its happened in your life time, all is wonderful. It will take time, but we have the best manager in the Premiership, the best owner, full of promises to make us great, we just have to be patient'
As a result articles such as this get stopped, criticisms of the manager makes you a pariah, criticism of the new owners something worse.
Now I know no matter how many times I or those like me say it, we won't be believed, but we are all overjoyed that O'Neill took the club on, of all those available he was the best. He's not by far, the best in the Premiership though and far from a name in European terms.
Same with the new owner. Its brilliant Lerner got the club when you consider some of those in the bidding, and compared to the previous owner he's a golden goose.
s his board have already shown their PR is on a different level to what we have come to expect. Already the signs look promising, the training ground go ahead alone, worth the entrance fee, but there's a long way to go but I don't see why we have to wait for major things to happen, if the intentions are as they say.
For all their combined problems O'Leary and Ellis left behind a club in a better state than many in the Premiership. Despite their end of season position, as my mate John was always reminding me our Premiership finishes hadn't been that bad compared to most, apart from the big lads.
As John and Ellis' PR kept reminding us the club wasn't in debt, well not in comparison to Everton, Man City and so on. By Premiership terms we weren't that poorly off in reality.
Now our owner is a billionaire, has loads of dosh, not as much as an Abramovich sure or possibly not as keen to spend as him, but hey he and his mates are all proven World Class businessmen, you mean to tell me they can't finance a major spend if the return is there.
Of course they can, its bullshite to suggest they can't, they aren't corner shop owners these guys, behind the PR, behind the dream they weave, are some seriously heavy financial movers, and they own and run Aston Villa.
So why should there be this settling in period, why do we have to wait and see, take our time. Neville lost the race, Lerner won it. We didn't get Southgate as manager we got the dream ticket I'm told, the main man, so we have it all, so why should we have to wait, why should there be this need to lower expectation, to accept one or two seasons of mediocrity, until all the long term bad is slowly eroded away and replaced with the new dream.
Is Sutton, Agathe even Petrov, your idea of a club looking to take on Europe and bring success to the club asap. Is buying a 40 year old who rarely gets into a side propping up the Premiership, your dream purchase ?
If it is, it shouldn't be, not with the dream team we have now in charge. If Neville had made it maybe, but you got your dream team, so why settle for the Prozac option, why sucker yourself into accepting second best.
We've done that when we didn't have a it seems a management able to do it differently, now we do.
Look at the state of our club, financially and even player wise, we aren't that bad off, in comparison to some who are likely to gain European qualification, we are in superb condition.
We have a wealthy and highly competent owner and board with stacks of money, excluding Chelsea and Manchester United who else has, Portsmouth, maybe?
No one else has even Spurs, Arsenal, certainly not Everton, Bolton, West Ham, and co.
Who else has such a good youth set-up as ours seems to be already. OK other clubs are far better at getting the best potential kids but hopefully the new dream ticket will even help that hugely.
Who else has the potential support base we have. Everyone forgotten we are the only Midlands club in the Premiership. For miles around no Premiership football lads yet we can't pack them in even with such a surprisingly good start.
Which belatedly leads me on to the manager and the existing squad. Its the same squad many on here tipped for Europe two seasons back, plus Petrov minus DLC, Phillips, and Milner. As early results have shown it hasn't done too bad, surprising many including O'Neill be he believed.
So whilst I appreciate we are in the transfer window, and its always hard to get the right people in January because of contract restraints, I thought we were no longer the 'Olivers' of the Premiership. No longer does the manager have to justify his expenditure with the sale of his best players, no longer does he have to spread 11 million over two seasons, no longer are we the poor buys of the Big boys.
At least I'd thought not.
I expect my team to succeed. I expect the new management to keep their promises, not over a long term of several years but now. Now is when they own the club, now is when I want results.
I want the manager to be looking to bring in the best, players with long term potential, better still with proven ability.
I want him to bring in players in January to compliment the undoubted talent we have and ensure we qualify for Europe next season.
hen in the summer I want them to bring in even better players to ensure we not only do well in Europe but we maintain the growth of the club in the Premiership.
I don't want ex drunks, over the top stop gaps 40 year old past geniuses with little to offer, unknown unproven cheapo from lower divisions, that's the Ellis way.
That's the way past managers worked, its not the way the dream ticket should work, not for me anyway.
You know what I'd bet my bank balance that the management know it too, I just wonder how much under all the excellent PR, they mean to achieve.
Date:Wednesday November 1 2006
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