Writer: J P Fear
Date:Sunday July 29 2007
Martin O'Neill has dropped the heaviest hint yet that more players will be arriving before the close of the transfer window. He said in The Times:
'If somebody says that doesn’t make us strong enough, well, we’re not strong enough at the moment, but that’s because we haven’t got all the players in yet.'
He also says he doesn't really care what the likes of Tony Cascarino, who criticised the signing of Nigel Reo-Coker and Marlon Harewood from West Ham, says as long as he knows he is doing the right things.
O'Neill said: 'Let everybody have their viewpoint. It's of no significance to me and it's not important. People have opinions, but I've got to make judgments, and there's a world of difference. I could pontificate from now to next Tuesday about Arsène Wenger's team, Sir Alex Ferguson's side, Jose Mourinho's team, but it would be of no concern to them, and that is how I view it.....I know he has a reputation for speaking his mind, but as long as it makes a bit of sense, I have no problem with people speaking their mind.'
Adding: 'Our job is to be able to try to compete with the bigger teams, so we also need to build a squad. This has become very important. Liverpool have improved their squad immensely, and this is a team that reached the Champions League final last season. So just when you start to think that you're putting a squad together - I'm not saying we have yet - then the other teams seem to be pulling out of sight again.'
'It's difficult in this day and age to go and get players of decent quality. Lots of people questioned the decision to buy Ashley Young last season, but Ashley will prove to be a bargain, I firmly believe, especially given the inflated prices that are being paid now. I want to try to keep a semblance of normality about this when normality seems to no longer exist, in terms of the market, and I want to make sure that Aston Villa and thereby the chairman get real value for money.'
'I don't want to run this thing like I have an open chequebook. But the two of us are aware that to give ourselves a bit of a chance, a leg-up to begin with, we will have to go into the market for players, and I intend to build a competitive squad here. If somebody says that doesn't make us strong enough, well, we're not strong enough at the moment, but that's because we haven't got all the players in yet.'
Randy Lerner also said last week: “We realise that we have to be aggressive in the transfer market to shore up the team based on the manager’s assessment.”
Our latest poll asks how many more players you think will arrive this summer.
Date:Sunday July 29 2007
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