Aston Villa - On No, O'Neill, You Didn't Say That?
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On No, O'Neill, You Didn't Say That?

Martin O'Neill has again whetted the appetite of the fans hinting that if we get the players he wants, he thinks Villa will be 'very competitive'. I hope he gets them, if not these comments have a habit of coming back to haunt managers!

He said: 'I think we'll be competitive. If we've got the players in I want by the end of August, I think we'll be very competitive. Numerically we're down on last season but in terms of the group of players contesting first team places, I think it's very good.'

Unless you look at competition for places in defence or goal I assume?

Adding on the official site: 'The players have got plenty of confidence and I'm hoping confidence remains a long-standing quality through the season, regardless of what happens in the next couple of games.'

Regardless of what happens in the next few games?

'We could get turned over by Liverpool very easily, but the overall depth of the squad will be the most important issue and that's what we're addressing at the minute. The better quality of player that comes to the club, the better it is for everyone.'

I'm really sorry but that is outrageous, how does that instil self belief and confidence in our players? Martin Laursen made a rallying cry the other day saying we need to start beating the top four teams, that sentence above looks more like a white flag. Sometimes it is better to say nothing surely? I hope he hasn't been taking lessons from David O'Leary's book of motivation and pr.

He continues: 'I'm very hopeful we can sign some of the players who are still my first choice and I'm still very hopeful we can have a competitive squad. We've got a couple of weeks to sign those players.'

Explaining: 'In an ideal world, it would have been great to have all the new signings in the week before we went to America. But I'm afraid even the very best sides are still chasing players at this minute. The problem is a lot of teams are after what we consider the best available and everyone seems to be chasing the same players.'

Oh well, we'll see what the season brings, still looking forward to it as I always do, but not with the excitement I expected to feel with a squad full of new blood ready to do battle.

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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday August 9 2007

Time: 5:27PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
What are we spost to think if he dont get these players
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09/08/2007 17:35:00

at a loss over those comments, I thought he was a great man manager, is this reverse psycology or something?! DOL was slated for saying the very same sort of thing.
The Fear
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09/08/2007 17:37:00

MON is fast losing his massive support. He better star pulling a couple of rabbits out of hats, if he wants to win us back.
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09/08/2007 17:45:00

I'm losing faith, we've been had again. We've got chequebook O'Leary as chairman and penny pinching Ellis as manager! Or so it seems! Haggling over fees lost us Robbie Keane among others and it's probably lost us a few players this summer...
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 17:50:00

All you morons will be chanting '' O' Neill out'' soon. You should be ashamed. DeanoVilla how can you say the O' Neill needs to win you back? the seasons not even started!
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09/08/2007 17:52:00

I don't think it is a moronic thing to question what is going on Dannygav. I agree we've not kicked a ball in anger yet and we need this season to see what MON can do, but there are those that think he is above criticism (him not included I might add) and football has always been about opinions. The internet is just a big pub table where we all sit around and argue! It would be a disaster to sack a manager now and there is no chance that will happen, but he should have been more organised this season and should be coming out with fighting talk now, not that we could easily get turned over!
The Fear
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09/08/2007 18:00:00

Isn't this stating the obvoius ? - you know wigan could say "if we get the players we want we could be competetive'" - but it is our inability to get players which is proving the stumbling block. If we had better players we would be a better team - but we don't some 10 weeks have passed since the end of last season, only 1 player of note joing - are we really to expect 4 or 5 in 3 weeks - when clubs releasing players will have less time to sin replacements
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:13:00

i reckon those comments are a bit out of context. imagine the man speaking those words. emphasis on 'could' get turned over. in that sense, we 'could' get turned over by small heath, but it just won't happen.
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:14:00

This is just *********. I'm sorry but get your fkn act together Villa. A FKN SUNDERLAND FAN LAUGHED AT ME TODAY. YOU'RE NOT FKN FUNNY VILLA. SORT IT OUT.
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:19:00

He can get us the points but he just cant seem to sign the players
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:34:00

Dont worry you will have the last laugh at school I had a Leeds fan laugh at me and hit me because I supported a ***** club and now look where they are
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:38:00

Seeing Dannygav's post: Strange isn't it how the merest hint of criticism of MON brings out such abusive responses in people? Makes me wonder exactly who the 'morons' are.
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:42:00

Well put JF. I applaud him clearing out all the "dead-wood", a little premature in my view; I would have preferred him to keep a few of those that played last season until he at least got better quality replacements for them (partic Ridge and Hughes). The exodus of the other 6 was good and prudent management. He's never disguised the fact that he's an "old school manager" and will therefore "watch the pennies" and will therefore try to get the best deal for the Club, wherever he can. We can't change that and I suspect that Lerner will respect and support him in this. It is clear that he has given a great deal of thought to his options for assembling a top-4 squad within the time-frame of the Club's 5 year plan. The option to try to buy success by splashing money arounf to buy success has obviously been dismissed. So it has to be PlanB, ie a la Matt Busby at Man U 40 years ago. He's also a realist and brutally honest. So his comments will not always be what we would like to hear - but make no mistake he'll do everything possible to get the best out of his squad on Saturday; of that, I have no doubt whatsoever.
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:43:00

In a matter of a summer we have gone from being some of the most hopeful fans in the country to the most pessimistic and these comments are not going to turn people around again. I'm sorry MON but you have made a big mistake with these comments. The transfer window has gone extremely badly and I would be very surprised if things improve. I'm just waiting for MON to take off his mask and reveal DOL, these are comments that you would have attributed to him
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 18:47:00

Am trying to be hopeful but some of the people on here are turning me but am more hopeful then I as 2 months ago but losing alot of players even though most of them were not good enough makes me wanna bite my nails because I thin about 4 of them where in the first team last year and we only got 2 to replace them so far
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 19:01:00

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09/08/2007 19:49:00

GMvillan are you happy with the lack of signings and the decreased squad ?
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 19:55:00

You go girl!! gmvillan-as a matter of interest do you have any opinion on the pre-season planning and transfer activity?
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 19:55:00

MON has said some strange things this summer, I dont think he expected it to be this tough to get players, resting on laurels perhaps?
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 20:00:00

jonah, I was not being abusive. I just think that these articles are pointless. The transfer window is still open and the season is yet to start. People are losing their heads for no reason. For the record I am delighted that we have O' Neill and honestly think he is one of the best managers in the game today. If i am wrong then so be it. However, the time to judge him is at the end of the season. Not now. Oh and be careful what you wish for.
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 20:02:00

When O Neill packs his bags and goes when the drama queens have bitched and moaned relentlesley then Ill thank you all,I think MoN knows more about motivating players than you do Fear.Have a ****in cry Im sick of it
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 21:04:00

I hope he dont pack his bags I really dont
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 22:08:00

Calm down ladies. I can see the various points being banded about, get a grip, dead wood had to go why prolong the process? You all said J Llotd was ******, all said Hughes was not good enough, bye hendrie, Flick off twins, Smiler cant pass, Liam clumsey. Then moan when thet go!! Reo looks great, Marlon has not played a prem game, yet he is a tw*t. Depth is not good, quality is much improved, not saying blind faith but just give the guy a chance. He has done well so far, why the ranting. UTV!!!!
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 22:19:00

the nagativity on this site is ludicrous
Report Abuse
09/08/2007 23:10:00

To answer your questions ASPINALL and notthedougellisstand - I do have some frustrations - but I guarantee that our new players will be better than the old ones. I don't read the gutter press/media for my opinions and I have no sense of entitlement to WHEN the club decides to buy. Martin ONeill knows more about thee players he wants than any of us. He is our manager and the time to judge him is not now. Sure, we could have bought Luke Young, or kept Hughes - just like we could have kept Hendrie in right midfield instead of Young or Baros up front instead of Carew, or McCann in central midfield rather than Reo Coker.....
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 02:28:00

gm - you`ve made some good points,hope you are proven right as we should all want the same thing.UTV
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 05:15:00

Lets sign SWP and Defoe, sort all our problems out, (to hear the morons talk) does anybody understand what MON has done ? he's got a nucleus of a very good squad, who have gelled together as a unit and can attack as a unit, very effectively. The forwards we have are very tasty and promising, midfield is strong and hungry, the defenders we do have (and admittedly we are desperate for three more) are as good as they get to be fair, if Laursen gets fitter over the next three matches, he will stay fit. The trouble with reading the quotes above is that they can be read two ways, one, as MON would say it in realistic football speak, and two, as a moaning and whinging glass is half empty so called supporter who is dissolutioned because we didn't sign Kaka, Messi and Deco. HE@S GOT RID OF THE S**T AND HAS GOT THE TEAM PLAYING VERY WELL AS A TEAM, BONDING AS A UNIT AND NOW HE CAN STRENGHTEN THE BACK LINE, DEFENDERS DON'T TAKE LONG TO SETTLE AND ANY THAT COME IN NOW, APART FROM A RIGHTBACK, WILL HAVE TO FIGHT FOR THEIR PLACE ANYWAY. DO I REALLY SIT NEXT TO SOME OF YOU YEAR IN YEAR OUT ?? STOP BEING F**KIN MANAGERS AND BE SUPPORTERS !!
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10/08/2007 07:17:00

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10/08/2007 07:20:00

While you've got my back up fear, why do you think Hughes, Davis, Ridgewell, Samuel, Djemba-Djemba, McCann, Hendrie have gone ? because they weren't good enough to play here anymore or weren't confident in themselves to be able or prepared to fight and compete for a place in the team. I don't want a lack lustre team anymore going through the motions, I want to see them fight and compete every time they pull a shirt on, I don't want some primadonna 'doing it every seventh game' , I want to see the passion back in players wearing our shirt. This is whats happening, open your eyes. We are no better off in numbers than last year, but now every squad member will bleed and sweat claret and blue, because they are hungry to succeed in our colours. This is what MON is good at, its the way he was tought by Cloughie, and it the right way, fight, compete and never say die, we saw this in the last nine games last year, and they have continued through pre-season, now lets look forward to saturday and see what the lads can do.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 07:32:00

gmvillan, I'm with you fella. Who remembers watching us beat Manure 3-0 at VP and their mob chanting "Ferguson out"? History proves who was right but in the meantime, The Fear is spot on. It's all about opinions and in my opinion, MON will get it right. Not however, as quickly as many on this site want.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 08:08:00

Astonmilan I have to disagree with your comment regarding MON having assembled a good squad. No he hasn't, he has assembled the nucleus of a good team but I think we must have one of if not the smallest squad in the league. I've said before that all I want is for Mon to do well and return us to the top six. I don't think that is beyond the team if we sign three more players and another squad player (GK, 2 x RB and CB). However, I really have doubts that these players who may now be brought in will be the quality that we expected. Also the comment regarding Luke Young. Proven Premiership player for 2.5m sounds like good business to me. I think the club are not expecting Delaney to play again so we are going to need two more RBs L. Young and Hoyte would have been ideal.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 08:27:00

astonmilan, football is about talking about players, managers, formations etc, if not what is it about? We do have a nucleous of a good side, what needed to do and hopefully are still doing is building on that nucleous. The money is there, I don't believe the players aren't there. We've not got goalkeeper cover, part of the job done, but to get rid of Hughes who was a decent all round player and leave us with no right-back (or leave it late and we then have to wait for the player to settle) isn't good management. MON is a good manager, I hope he proves to be a GREAT manager but he is not above questioning or criticism. I don't think this or the other Villa sites are negative, I think the comments from the manager as above though are. That is exactly the sort of thing I'd expect DOL to say not a man manager like Martin O'Neill. Davis and Ridgewell were both good players. McCann and Hughes were decent enough squad players until replacements were in. Hendrie, well I never liked him as he wasted a great talent and I agree Jumper Jumper needed to go!
The Fear
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10/08/2007 08:42:00

I agree with Gmvillain. None of us know what goes on behind closed doors. I for one prefer that we dont How many times in the past have we been linked with players, got all excited and then had our hopes crushed. Much better to unveil players when we have them. None of the players that have left will be missed.If you honestly believe that MON is not working to bring in quality on a long term basis then youre mad. The trouble is that the quality players are hard to come by that at the moment will want to come to us.
return of godzvilla
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 10:44:00

Fear......they didn't want to stay and fight for their shirts.....if they are not prepared to be a team player then they go.. full stop. Davis in my opinion is a decent premiership player who may or may not get better. Ridgewell is not that good mate no matter how you dress it up. Luke Young obviously didn't want to come to VP and who knows what Hoyte will do. Its no good having players in a squad who won't give 100%. MON said he wasn't pushing anyone out of the door....that has been true, the ones who have left, did so on their own backs. And you didn't hear MON say it, you read it......totaly different. Only players who MON believes have the right attributes will be signed....and I'm happy with that one, players here just to make up numbers are a liability. After seeing the crap Villa have bought over the years, this certainly is a new era. So please stop saying the ' get rid ' quote, no player has been got rid of, except Hendrie (cause he's a p**ck and Djemba-Djemba because he is s**t). the team is very settled now, unlike most around us, and we are well prepared for tomorrow, and when, not if, the reinforcements come in at the back, we will be capable of a good run this season.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 10:57:00

Disagree with Martin's observations that "...even the very best sides are still chasing players at this minute". I beg to differ. Whereas most managers dont seem to have had too much of a problem in strengthening their squads, the majority of clubs now have their new faces bedded in, and are all fit and ready for the off. In comparison we find ourselves stumbling along, still way, way short of where we need to be, or certainly where we expected to be a mere 24 hours or so before the big kick-off.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 13:07:00

Man City, West Ham, Portsmouth and newcastle hardly look ready to me, Spurs and Everton are plus the top four. We are well gelled now, just need defenders in as cover.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 14:42:00

THE RACE TO WIN HAS ALREADY STARTED. Who is going to win the Vital members league prizes? 3 names are miles ahead of the others and it is too close to call. Sadly I think that this is more exciting than the clubs current state of affairs. If we had made more signings the numbers wouldn't be so high. The same problem is going to happen that occured last year when we will start off well and slowly drop off the pace as injuries and fatigue (Gabby last year) start to take effect.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 15:57:00

Not the doug, Luke young is not good enough. Which is why we did not buy him. Just because you think he is great don't mean villa are on the slide. I think he is cr@p.
Report Abuse
10/08/2007 21:55:00

MON didn't look too upbeat at the Scott Carson unveiling. He looked as if he has the weight of the world on his shoulders, and in many ways I guess he has.
Report Abuse
11/08/2007 04:29:00


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