The Villa Times - 16/08/2007
Unoial Villa News...
It has been announced that Villa forward Gabriel Agbonlahor has been recalled to the England Under-21 squad following the fall out before the U21 championship earlier this summer. Gabby will be in the frame for the friendly v Romania at Ashton Gate next week. Luke Moore and Craig Gardner have also been called up.
Martin O'Neill is looking to hold talks and sort out the future's of Olof Mellberg, Luke Moore and Thomas Sorensen. He told the official site: 'I'm hoping to be able to resolve one or two by the middle of next week. There's Olof, Luke Moore and Thomas Sorensen's position. All the people who have a year left to run on their contracts. I hate to put a time limit on these things, but by the end of next week I would hope to have certain things resolved. I would like to have those done and I think that the players would like to know by transfer-deadline day as well. So I'll make decisions on all of them.'
The Villa boss also says: 'We will have the players in by the end of the month. It's as simple as that.' Full article: O'Neill pledges player arrivals
Thomas Sorensen was quoted yesterday saying he wanted talks with the Villa boss after a third keeper was brought in to Villa Park. Speaking to Tipsbladet, a regular read in the Fear household you understand, he said: 'It seems somewhat strange that they spend a lot of money on him when we already have got two good keepers in the squad.' O'Neill has defended his decision to bring in Scott Carson saying: 'From the experience of last season, you would have said that you need three keepers. I am in absolutely no hurry now to be offloading anyone. If I can have competition for places outfield, why can I not have competition for places in goal?'
Martin O'Neill has also said there will be no more players leaving Villa Park before new players arrive. He said: 'At the moment we're trying to add to the squad. If somebody comes in and wants to go, it won't just be as easy as that. If by transfer-deadline day I have the squad that I want and then somebody is desperate to go then, that is a different issue. But first of all I will build the squad up before I let anyone else out the door. That's part of people's contracts, they sign and they take the chance. While I allowed Liam Ridgewell to go, that's been a long-standing thing. Nobody here is itching to go at the moment. Obviously those things can change as we get more players in, but I won't at this minute be letting anybody just walk away unless we have the players in.'
2600 tickets for the trip to the City of Manchester Stadium (Sept 16) are now on priority sale.
As expected, Mark Delaney has been forced to retire: 'This is a very sad day for me and this is not a decision I have taken lightly. But, having taken everything into consideration, I feel this is the right decision for myself and my family.' Full article: Mark Delaney forced to retire.
Wales boss John Toshack has spoken of the retirement of Mark Delaney who has 36 caps for his country. 'It is a blow for us as he was our most experienced defender and that is an area where we are struggling. He came into football late, so that makes it all the more frustrating for him as at the age of 31 he should still have another four years left at least. But we've been half expecting it and it is not a complete surprise. He's not played for 12 months and has had three operations.'
Vital Villa asked what you favoured strike partnership was. 29% went for local lads Gabriel Agbonlahor and Luke Moore. 22% voted for Big John Carew and Gabby and interestingly (or am I just sad and alone on that?!) the same percentage voted for JC and Luke Moore (which - not that anyone cares - was where my vote went!). 21% voted that none were their favourite striker partnerships because we don't have a 20 goal a season striker and need one bought. Full results: Local lads favoured in poll.
Vital Fantasy Football Newsletter #1 (not too late to join up, its never too late!!!) Click Here
Thought for the day: The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. Bertrand Russell