Date:Monday September 3 2007
Just back after one of the best games I have been to in a long time and full of alcohol, so I have thought lets spell it out. We are in the midst of a turning tide at Villa. There is promise in the air and with the football gods shining on us coupled with team performance, we can get things moving.
The transfer window is closed and season 07/08 is in full affect.What are we going to do about it. Are we going to file it with the other statistics, of nearly there, or almost achieved or can we possibly say: Well son..that was when it started. That was the tipping point..
Today was what football was all about. It was exhilarating. The team battled and worked hard for each other and sent the fans home happy..oh and put 3 points on the board and beat Chelsea (has a nice ring doesn't it?)
So like most things, once you have a taste of it you want more. The football and the battling display..yes please. But to be in the thick of it with 42, 0000 Villa fans willing every tackle, encouraging every break and gasping at every chance. That is what supporting your team is about.
So let's put things into perspective. We hold 42, 500+ at Villa Park. We live in a city that is the second city of England. Not because it has great museums, or world class entertainment venues..although it does. But because it has a population of over 1 million people. I am no mathematician but 42k, into1 million goes a few times! Then if I was to say that there are over 4 million people within a 40 minute drive from Birmingham, we should hang our heads in shame. That is one hell of a capita, that could support our club. Hey they may like, cricket, golf, oragami or flowering arranging but even a 60k capacity stadium, versus a potential 5 million customer base,well you do the maths. The potential is there...
So I move onto my next point. What is perceived as a big club?
In my eyes it is league position and filling your stadium. For example Newcastle is deemed a big club, yet they last won a trophy 37 years ago! But they fill 53,000 seats week in week out. Big Club is the perception to everyone, including all the star names they attract, because of the atmosphere they promise to new players. (Does an actor want to perform at a community hall or the Albert Hall?) On the other hand Blackburn won the Premier league 12 years ago and the league cup 5 years ago, but they can't fill Ewood Park. Would you say they are a big club? Personally I don't think so, but they have been more successful than most in recent years.
Stadium capacity when watching on TV is the message a club sends out to the rest of the country, and to over 1 Billion people in 195 countries where the EPL is broadcast. Do we want to be a big club? YES. Do we want to have a worldwide fan base and growing respect? YES. Do we need to fill VP every week and create the sort of atmosphere that scares the sh*t out of the opposition? Absolutely YES.
The club can't make the fans attend. It can't make them sing and create the sort of atmosphere that I felt today. And I can only dream and wish to experience the same atmosphere on a weekday night in Europe.
A few beers to set the mood, the darkness everywhere, and walking out into VP lit up with the floodlights and a grown mans Disney world is there in full view.
Is it a dream, can WE make it reality.
This is what the fans bring to the club.
This is the glue that bonds Randy, Martin O'Neill, the players and VP..us the fans.
If you can get down, lets set the tone for the future. Aston Villa is a big club. With passionate support.
Let's play our part in taking us to where we want to be.and show the world that the football club that created league football in 1888 knows how to put on a match!
Up the Villa
Date:Monday September 3 2007
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