The Villa's 'General' Issue
About eighteen months, two threads and 342 pages. Has it been that long since the General popped up on Vital?
Its been a interesting time, issues have been addressed, problems redressed, and thousands of offers of hospitality have been offered to the former Marine.
Unfortunately, at least in terms of weeding the information from the threads, it is has now become slightly harder to use. No-one wants a situation where the moderators have to start limiting the thread to questions and answers only, eliminating discussion, as other forums have. So from now on, I am going to write a simple, short summary of what the General has had to say, so we can avoid the occasions where the General has to answer similar questions repeatedly. A one stop reference where the information can be digested without the usual trawl through several pages. I will quote directly, as I feel the answers hold more weight in the General's own unmistakable rhetoric.
The night before the Reading game, after having been asked earlier in the week about the possibility of moving the Blackburn fixture, and answering unequivocally that it was not his place to make such decisions, General Krulak offered some background on the mechanics of the eventual shift in the fixtures.
Rather wonderfully, it's seemed that MON's team, and certain Vital posters were singing from the same hymn-sheet.
Posted 11/1/2008 12:37 General Krulak here:
1. By now, everyone knows that the Blackburn game has been changed. As you know, this came as a surprise to me too. I spoke to Richard Fitzgerald about this move late last night and here is the information he provided. Basically, when the Club was knocked out of the FA Cup, the football side of the business requested that the game be moved. Essentially they wanted to optimize the time between fixtures in order to enhance the performance of the team. By moving the game, we have somewhat smoothed out the sine curve that comes with some of the fixtures in the league. By spacing out the games, the players, coaches and Manager feel that training can be more effective, injuries can get a opportunity to heal a bit, the players can get in a bit better shape, etc. Simply put, the football side believes we will be better set for the coming games by smoothing out the schedule. I realize that this will cause some problems with some of our fans...and have spoken to Nicky Keye about those fans who are now unable to make the game. She indicated that she would like those fans to call her at the ticketing office and let the Club try to sort this out. Again, please call Nicky if this has caused a problem.
The Reading game itself came and went, and with little to complain about in terms of the result, questions came in regarding Mrs Krulak's views on Britain, the General's take on the game and a very interesting query as to the attendance figure required to balance the financial outgoings. Additionally, a wonderful suggestion was put forward for an end of season parade by all participating Aston Villa sides, including the ladies and academy.
Posted 12/1/2008 17:30
1. Mrs 'K' loves the UK. Lived there for 4+ years. Will be with me at Villa Park soon.
2. Solid game today. We played hard, had some crisp movement, and came away with a result we needed and should have. We just need to take each game as it comes...get as many points as possible...and we can make Europe. We just need to support the lads and keep focused.
3. I will see about the 'parade' of players at last game.
Posted 12/1/2008 19:38
1. Simply put, you cannot 'break even' with attendence at Villa Park.
Later that evening General Krulak clarified his position on transfer dealings and financial realities at Villa Park.
Posted 12/1/2008 21:04
General Krulak here:
1. It is really not my ballgame to talk about signing players. Simply put, MON runs that show. He sees what we see and I am sure will do right by the Club. There is much involved here that none of us really know. I am just going to watch what happens.
2. I am also not going to go into Club finances. I answered the question re. 'living off' of attendence...it just doesn't work that way. Yes, a larger stadium helps...but you need more than just attendence...you need many things that I am sure everyone is smart enough to suss out.
Sunday brought with it the widespread attendance reporting error throughout various publications. We all knew it was 38,000+, which the General attempted to confirm, though the issue was clouded further by an inadvertant typo. We also wanted to know exactly how the board felt the season was going, how often Randy made it to the game and whether the club realised how annoyed we would be if Laursen was allowed to leave(!). Another valid suggestion was presented with a view to replacing the the steward uniforms.
Posted 13/1/2008 15:04
1. Randy and Directors are very pleased with the season to date. At the same time, we are realists. We also watch the ManU game and others and know that we still have a looong way to go. We never talked about a year 1 or year 2 team...we talked about a 5 year plan and we are on track. We are happy...we have a very good Squad...a very good Reserve and Youth organization and we have a hugely talented Manager and Coaches. We are going to be fine.
2. Either Randy or I have made it to almost every game. I have been hampered early by a bad back...but we put one of us in the stands for almost every single game.
Posted 13/1/2008 20:21
General Krulak here:
1. Attendence WAS 28,000+!! We are making corrections to web site as well as notifying 'beeb' of error. Hopefully they will correct.
2. Stewards uniforms. Will fix them but not right now...lots of other things going on that we need to 'fix.' We will get to it.
3. I don't comment on players and transfers and contracts. Just not right for me to do so.
Not for the first time, the poor PA system became a theme on Monday, and last seasons successful open training session at Villa Park was debated. The General was also made aware of that the traditonal tickets offers made to the Ladies team were not being serviced.
Posted 14/1/2008 17:43
General Krulak here:
1. Yes, 38,000+. It was wrong on the official web site as well as other media. We are very much aware of this fact and will fix it. NOT TO WORRY!!! We get numbers from various areas...all surroundiing turnstiles, technology, and ticket office.
2. We are aware of sound system issue. It will get fixed...but probably not in the timeframe you would like. We are in the midst of prioritizing many things...we will get to ALL of them but it will not be overnight.
3. As you know, I am a HUGE supporter of the Ladies Team...I will see what we can do for end of season.
4. We will hope to have another training day at Villa Park.
5. I do not think there is anyone at Villa Park who would be prepared to talk about transfers until the activity has been completed. Clarifying the situation of a player is not likely to happen until it is public knowledge...I think all can understand why.
...and again on Tuesday....
Posted 15/1/2008 14:23
1. Let me try to be as clear as I can on this subject....We are aware that the sound system has real problems. It is not something that can be fixed by a simple 'tuning' of the volume. The sound system is old and is unreliable. To fix it will require time and money...and is not something that can be done during the season. We were going to do it last summer but other pressing priorities came up...we will fix it. What is important is that all fans know that we know there is a problem. Remember, I spend most of each game I attend walking through all the stands. I KNOW about the problem.
So, all in all, another few days of valuable communication between club and supporter. I love that guy.
General Krulak Part Two
The first thread is available here: General Krulak