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The Villa Trend Is Still Up

The Villa Trend Is Still Up

I'm well known for my less than positive views on O'Neill, and while I gain encouragement that many have over the last season seen the light where he is concerned I think it only fair to say that with the new
season about to kick off tomorrow, I'm a more relaxed Villan than I have been for many, many a season start.

The loss of Ellis and his list of managers, his ever changing team, his jam tomorrow, never achieved promises are all gone. In its place is an ever improving club with a great owner and reliable manager.

Last season start Ellis' influence still affected the club as did the previous two managers tactics and teams. O'Neill just about managed, thanks to some spectacular backing from Lerner in January, to stabilise
the ship enough for us to stave off a relegation fight and enable a startling finish up to 11th.

Whilst I'm not at all happy with the transfer situation through this summer, O'Neill has virtually achieved his objectives, I'd guess. He has removed those he does not feel will do a good enough job for him. The jokers from the past are all gone along with some I'd have kept, players he felt he couldn't motivate, nevertheless.

Again we are left with a paper thin squad, but one which is better than its been for 5 even 7 seasons, and one which has shown using negative tactics can survive if nothing else. Whilst I'm sure every other clubs fans are confident their squads have been improved for them to be 'safer' next season, few will be thinking they have improved enough to make huge moves upwards either.

I know our squad isn't as well prepared as it could be, its not as good as it could be, its most certainly not as big as it needs to be yet and I have doubts even when these oft promised signings do arrive it will still be large enough. But, last season the team coped with players like Agathe, Sutton, then Bardsley, without Laursen from day 1, with Kiraly for several games, and with Bouma, McCann, Hughes, and Mellberg often on the injury table.

This season the table is one of the best in the Premiership,it will need to be, but the team that kicks off tomorrow is better than the one that finished in May, and it will get better soon. Its not what I expected, its far, far poorer than I'd wanted, but its good enough and its not stagnating, the trend is still up. How high depends on the next 3 weeks and how quickly new players fit in.

We'll see.

Date:Friday August 10 2007
Time: 1:05PM


An interesting article and several good points made
10/08/2007 13:13:00
Totally agree its gonna be an interesting season, wonder what players will come in if we beat all the teams in August and sit on top of the table? They will all be clambering to us near midnight on the 31st August - lets wait and see though.
10/08/2007 13:20:00
Slightly more even handed then his usual attempts at subtle "I told you so" slights against our club's management.
The Usual Suspect
10/08/2007 13:22:00
Completely agree with all of that, and if this continues over the next few years as has been promised then we should have plenty to look foward to.
10/08/2007 13:28:00
"along with some I'd have kept, players he felt he couldn't motivate, nevertheless." - Just how do you plan to keep players at the club who aren't happy with not playing? MON said from day one he wouldn't stand in their way if they wanted to leave and sadly Ridge and Davis didn't want to fight for their place, when they can walk into the starting 11 of an inferior team .
10/08/2007 13:34:00
I don't plan to do anything I'm not the manager. I didn't say O'Neill is a toss pot for not keeping them, I didn't say any manager that didn't keep players until he had viable replacements should be sacked. I just suggested an opinion that I would have preferred to keep a few players just in case. The team would look better with Hughes at right back against Liverpool, than some unknown kid, an out of position Mellberg or a last minute signing, which now with a few hours to go doesn't look likely so why the attempted point score onemad ?
10/08/2007 14:03:00
Very interesting article. Good points made. Share your view about lack of transfer signings, frustrating I know, but PUT YOUR TRUST IN MON... RANDYLERNERFAN
10/08/2007 14:07:00
48 you sure are an enigma, you've confused the hell outta me with your ever changing views.
10/08/2007 14:17:00
AVFC48, Would rather have Gardener or any of our centre backs at RB, at least they would be up for it and give 100%, Hughes could not pass atall and Ulysses DeLa Cruz would have been better. And at last you have realised that you are not the manager. Some good points but MON wants a squad who are all pulling in the same direction and are hungry not self obsessed wanabees. Patience is needed. At least he is not panic buying!!!!
10/08/2007 14:24:00
A well structured piece avfc48, with which I largely agree. As you know I just wish all of your posts were as constructive. Some posters can only rant and rave - you don't need to.......... so keep up the good work.
pongo wearing
10/08/2007 14:49:00
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