Vital Football

Latest Aston Villa News

Strange Game This Football

Strange Game This Football

Strange Game this Football

I must admit that the older I get and I suppose I am heading for my dotage, the more confused I become about the goings on in this major entertainment industry called Association Football and all that is allied with it.

On the one hand you have the supporters of a football team. Those people who, once they have made a commitment to a particular team remain, for the most part unswervingly loyal to that team whatever happens. This is whether their fortunes take them to the top of the Premier league or to the bottom of League Two.

Yes, there are varying degrees of passion exhibited by the said fans. From some who are so committed that they allow the passion they have for their team to affect their schooling or work, to those who are just quietly pleased that their team is currently having a measure of success. It is perhaps possible that, if their team was struggling, they may be just a little more vociferous, but who knows. After all, success and failure is always a relative issue.

For example if Wrexham stay up their fans will be as ecstatic as the supporters of the team that eventually wins the Premiership. By the same token supporters of Manchester United will be thoroughly displeased if they fail to win a trophy this season and, to be honest, the thought of that happening warms my heart! You see it is all about expectation and we Villa supporters have had hope and expectation by the bucket full for many, many years, but little to cheer us. We are as durable a bunch as you will find anywhere, but now with restored hope and expectation after the regime change two years ago.

You only have to venture on the any Vital Football site to see the passion and enthusiasm with which the supporters of any of the teams in the leagues address all the issues that concern them. Currently of course it is the transfer window with our beloved leader doing his usual bout of last minute shopping, which most people are thinking about. We are all wondering who we will next see wearing a Villa shirt and will their coming to our team make a difference?

This brings me nicely to the other side of the football equation, to the Manager and players. I suppose the truth is that most of the players and managers are nothing more than mercenaries; with no more loyalty to the team they play for than who gives them their next pay cheque. Well, perhaps that is a little harsh as there are some players who show a genuine passion for the team for which they are playing. I think, perhaps, Villa is particularly lucky, having a number of players who I could never imagine, for instance, pulling on a shirt from that team across the city. I wonder how much that influenced Gary Cahill in his decision to pick Bolton for his move? But for most, well, loyalty is the next pay packet.

I know there is an argument that for the footballer it is just a job and they are employed just as you or I may be employed. The difference is that working for a bank or a manufacturing company does not raise the passions the way supporting a football team does. Can you really see two people arguing about the merits of banking at Lloyds or Barclays for example? It is at this point that the manager and coaches come into their own; building, from a disparate group, a team that wants to die for their club.

Martin O'Neill has worked wonder so far in this respect. I do hope he picks carefully during this transfer window and that he and his coaching team have sufficient skills to alter the mind set of any
incoming players from that of self-seeking to putting the team and only the team at the top of their priorities. If that happens we can go on to greater things, but one bad apple can spoil the bunch, perhaps that is why MON is so careful and thinks so long before acting. I do hope so!

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Join the Vital Fantasy Football League - its Free!

Date:Thursday January 31 2008
Time: 11:20AM


Cahill moved to Bolton because his home is in Sheffield(born and bread there) and they are very close to each other.
31/01/2008 11:50:00
Great article and so true look at Fergie and Manu the player has to fit if they don't it doesn't matter who they are or how good they might be they go. And they never buy anyone unless they think they will fit the Fergie model. At the moment we have a squad of players who work for each other and show the a similer grit and determination that has always been the hallmark of great teams. Lets hope we manage to keep that whoever comes in.
31/01/2008 11:58:00
Blues wanted to take him on loan until the end of the season witha view to a permanent deal. Don't believe anything else. Sullivan has been on the publicity offensive today - no coincidence. Also they've failed to offload McSheffrey off thier wage bill - 4m well spent there.
31/01/2008 11:59:00
I recently went to Wrexham v MK Dons down at the Racecourse and you should have seen the elation when Roberts lobbed the keeper and scored their first home goal for an age! Sir Brian of Little appears to have turned a corner with his 9 signings this month
31/01/2008 12:06:00
What a well thought out, interesting and absorbing article. Very much enjoyed reading that. So true, but thought provoking all the same. More please Obediah.
02/02/2008 21:17:00
Strange game this football indeed, and as the seasons pass, the stranger it seems to get.
15/02/2008 15:16:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Aston Villa Articles

Aston Villa Fans React To Win Against Fulham...

Post match reactions to Aston Villa winning against Fulham.

Video - Highlights Of Aston Villa v Fulham & A Pumpkin!

A win away, a win at home, I could get used to this!

Gollini Post Fulham Interview - Confidence The Key

Nice post match reaction interview with our keeper Pierluigi Gollini

Audio - Bruce Talks Fulham

Manager Steve Bruce was again a happy man at the full time whistle in Saturday's game against Fulham.

Archived Vital Villa Articles

Vital Villa articles from

Site Journalists

J P Fear
Editor email
Mike Field
Editor email
Steve Wade
no email
no email
Turkish Penguin
no email
no email
Chris Heath
no email
M Calucar
no email
JuanPablo Angel
no email

Current Poll (see more polls)

Fulham MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Sub - Adomah4%
Sub - McCormack1%
Sub - Westwood1%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Newcastle 14 10 1 3 31 19
2 Brighton 14 8 4 2 28 9
3 Huddersfield 14 9 1 4 28 4
4 Norwich 14 8 3 3 27 7
5 Sheff Wed 14 7 3 4 24 1
6 Bristol City 14 7 2 5 23 6
7 Birmingham 14 6 5 3 23 3
8 Reading 14 6 4 4 22 -3
9 Preston 14 6 2 6 20 1
10 Leeds Utd 14 6 2 6 20 -1
11 Brentford 14 5 4 5 19 5
12 Barnsley 14 6 1 7 19 3
13 Q.P.R. 14 5 4 5 19 -3
14 Fulham 14 4 6 4 18 -2
15 Burton 14 4 5 5 17 0
16 Aston Villa 14 3 8 3 17 0
17 Ipswich 14 4 5 5 17 -2
18 Wolves 14 4 4 6 16 -1
19 Forest 14 4 3 7 15 -3
20 Cardiff 14 4 3 7 15 -9
21 Derby County 14 3 5 6 14 -4
22 Blackburn 14 3 3 8 12 -8
23 Wigan 14 2 5 7 11 -3
24 Rotherham 14 1 3 10 6 -19
Vital Football Comment
Latest F1 News
Hamilton was in fear of engine issues
Latest Vital Boxing News
Eggington Stops Gavin in Eight Rounds
Write for Vital Football

Recent Aston Villa Results (view all)

Aston Villa Fixtures (view all)

Oct 30 2016 12:00PM : Birmingham City (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Nov 5 2016 3:00PM : Blackburn Rovers (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Nov 18 2016 7:45PM : Brighton & Hove Albion (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Nov 26 2016 3:00PM : Cardiff City (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Dec 3 2016 5:30PM : Leeds United (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Dec 10 2016 3:00PM : Wigan Athletic (H)
Sky Bet Championship

Vital Members League Table

1.The Fear505
9.Stephen Jay Hawkings132
The Vital Football Members League