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Are Us Villa Fans Realistic?

I'm sure I'm going to get some flak for this post but I really don't think enough of us are realistic about what we should achieve this season or indeed possibly even next season. I'm certainly not saying we shouldn't set our targets high but as with most performance management criteria there should always be a Threshold, Target and Stretch.

Personally I would say our Threshold this season has almost already been achieved already which is to finish higher than last season. Our Target should be to try and sneak in to a UEFA spot and the Stretch would be the Holy Grail that is Champions League qualification. Realistically, Target and Stretch should probably be the same for the next couple of seasons at least and then we should be looking to mount a serious challenge on the Prem BUT these things take time. You can't build a title winning team inside 2 years. Martin O'Neill has been spot on so far, identified the players from the inherited squad he wants to keep, promoted some of the younger players and brought in a selection of players who have improved the quality of the squad in areas we were lacking - in my opinion the only mistake MON has made in the transfer market was letting JPA go, how he'd have loved to be playing with a player like Ashley Young in the team.

I respect MON for not rushing out and signing players left right and centre IF he feels they do not add the required quality to the side. If we suffer a run of injuries and suspensions I would rather he continue to give some of the home grown players their opportunity. Let's not forget that the players we are left with for the remainder of the season are the ones that have got us to where we are in the table and there's no reason to doubt that they can't continue to keep us up there.

But let's also not forget that this is a 5 year plan and we're just over half way through year 2. When year 5 comes around we all hope that we're going to be challenging the big boys but we should always remember that they have all had quite a headstart on us and moving into the elite 4 is going to take patience. We are a club on the up and let's be positive about it, let's enjoy the improvements that have been made since Randy Lerner and MON arrived but please, please, please let's stop the bickering and sniping which was justified under the Ellis era and be thankful that those days are behind us.

Up the Villa




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The Journalist

Writer: villatillidie Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday February 8 2008

Time: 12:58PM

Your Comments

No.
weller77
Shouldn't it be 'Are we Villa fans realistic'? And the answer should always be 'no' because it is only by looking for improvement that things get better. To be satisfied is to go backwards. Why do we have to 'sneak' into a competition? If we are there, we deserve to be and should go there proudly. Wasn't it Graham Taylor who said he did think we would be second, but if we didn't win it then, we may never have a better chance? 5 Year plans are OK in principle, but opportunities have to be grabbed, and if we have one, we should go for it, not sit back because it is not in some previously plan.
Gordonsleftboot
Well we'll have no vitalvilla is their is no sniping, it's evryones opinion that makes this site. Just like you expressed an opnion, MON doesn't get evrything right because everyone has their own ideas, we air them on this site!
krisvilla
Gordonsleftboot is spot on. Its all good talking about the 5 year plan but you also got to realise that the likes of Man city, Everton, Pompy and Spurs are also doing the same. We might never again the oppertunity to get 4th again for along time. This summer transfer market will either make or break MON in my ophinion because if he again looks to the plebs that can't get on other prem teams then we will fall well down the league.
Kilga
I think that many people voicing their opinions on this site about who we should have signed during the transfer window were unrealistic. As an example - why would Eidur Gudjohnsen or Jose Bosingwa want to leave their respective teams who are in the Champions League to come to us. Not realistic at all. Also, every time we lose to a team (often enivitable) a lot of fans start saying that it's all going wrong. We will not go the whole season unbeaten.
Curteece
Curteece you just selected players to fit your argument - what about more realistic targets signed by the likes of our rivals. Defoe, Diarra, Hutton, Woodgate, Alaves, Benjani.....you wouldn't take any of those?? As for the performance against Fulham which I guess you are referring to, I think for a lot of us it was more concerning in the manner of defeat more than anything, as we looked tired, and bereft of ideas - as well as showing that with one or two injuries we may well struggle in even the so called easier games. All valid concerns I think.
YatesyVillain
Gordonsleftboot and Kilga, it depends how you look upon being successful, you sound like you'd be happy with a quick fumble on the door step while I'm looking for the invite upstairs and return visits :o) I want success to be long term for this club, god knows we do deserve it and have wasted numerous opportunities over the past 25 years to have it. But I am realistic to know that you need to build up to something like that if you want to be able to sustain it. Everybody looks for improvement year on year it's just how you measure what is improvement in a realistic way.
villatillidie
Villatillidie - the thing about this fantastic 5 year plan you keep mentioning is that it assumes everyone else stands still. They won't. If we are strengthening, chances are our competitors for the UEFA places will also be strengthening. In fact, if anything, they are doing so at a faster rate than us fairly consistently. I think a lot of us seem to agree that we've punched well above our weight this year so far....and the position we find ourselves in today might not be one we find ourselves in next year if we don't make the most of it. So we don't make Europe this year...what happens? What are our chances next year? No better, surely? That's the big flaw in this 5 year plan b0ll0x. So why not put our money where our mouth is and strengthen to give us the best possible shot at Europe from the position of strength we (fortuitously) find ourselves in today?
YatesyVillain
Good point YatesyVillain. I wasn't referring to all people offering opinions on who to sign. Just some of them. I think certain people have their heads up in the clouds. Why run before we can walk? I am not referring to the valid comments that certain people made about the game against Fulham. i agree it wasn't quite an expected defeat. But you do lose games along the course of a season. We are in a much stronger position than I and I'm sure many of us expected at the start of the season and we are moving in the right direction, so why get so negative about a single defeat? I am a season ticket holder who moved a few years ago to Merseyside. I had a season ticket last year and at times a few seasons ago the trip down the M6 became a chore, and now it's a breeze - I look forward to a Saturday.
Curteece
To Curteece & Villatillidie. What kind of transfers would keep you happy in the summer. Would you be happy with MON again looking at the bench of all the teams that are around us in the table. I could probably accept what has jsut happened this transfer window if i thought that things would be different in the summer but all i can go on is his past record and that really does not inspire me. We need to bring in at least 3 big names this summer if we are not going to fall behind the likesof Spurs and Everton.
Kilga
Kilga, stop putting things into peoples mouths. Pretty much everything you've said would be disregarded in most courts on account of the fact that they're unsubstantiated claims and accusations. People continue to say we have a small squad and need players in, only to complain when those players "aren't good enough" MON looking to the bench of other premiership teams has been laying a foundation. I don't know if you've ever tried to live just in the foundations of a house, but it's tough. No shelter, no amenities, and very few luxuries. I was surprised last summer when i saw Harewood and Knight come in, but it's clear why it was done. You claim you want a bigger squad, but that isn't enough for you, you want a bigger squad where every player is top class. I think I know a team like that, but some billionaires bought them for 790 million a couple of years back. Forget this buzz-phrase "5 year plan" because that's not what i'm talking about. Villa aren't like Spurs or the new Everton, or any other consistent top half team from the last few years. Villa are pre-season relegation favourites who took a sudden turn when we got a new saviour in, he then did the inconceivable by taking essentially the same squad to 11th. Let me say that again, 11th. This season will not be the only chance we get to finish fourth, and it certainly wont be our best. The more we build, the stronger we become, the more of a threat we will be.
Carlosio
Im not putting any words into anybody's mouth. I was only expressing my ophion. I persionally don't go for this MON = God belief that many people have. While i do agree that his manmangement style is as good as there is in the world he does also have his failings, i.e. the transfer market. Its there for all to see. I know you will say look at our league position but where would we be if he had managed to bring in the players we needed in the summer or Jan. I just hope he can do this in the summer because with his ability to get the best out of players we will be dangerous.
Kilga
Only those complaining about this 5 year plan have actually mentioned it. I did, but only in reference to said fact. I maintain this so called failing is actually misplaced. Just because you don't agree with the signings he has made does not mean he is incapable of making any. Petrov, Carew, Young, Maloney, Davies, (Carson), Harewood, Knight, Salifou, Reo-Coker, Routledge, as well as the other smaller signings and fill in players such as Chris Sutton. 10 (plus Carson) in a year and a half. Anyone who has been asking for squad players, there are a fair few in that list. It's irrelevant whether they are all top quality players. I didn't intend to mention our league position, but since you've bought it up...our squad last year took a relegation candidate to 11th, and to within 10 points of fifth. Are Wigan, Fulham or even Newcastle with their new revitalising managers likely to get anywhere near the top 6-8 this year (no offence to any fans)? What about Middlesbrough's prospects for a european finish next year? Not impossible, but in todays Premier League, quite improbable. People say money talks, MON has us in 6th, and three (max. 5) points from 4th place after 25 games, 18 months after finishing 16th. Irrespective of what other teams have done i.e. Man City, that is quite a feat. I didn't expect Europe at the start of the season, it was a hope. In the same way I expected a draw at white hart lane this season, but hoped for three. There was disappointment because we dropped 2 points there, but before the game i'd have taken a point.
Carlosio
Do the doubters really think that a man with the business pedigree of RAL and a manager with the track record of MON, havent taking into account that the likes of Man C ,Pompey etc will not be standing still? Please give the men steering this Villa ship some credit.
gappy65
Yeah, i didn't even bother voicing my opinion on that one. Seems a silly thing to even suggest.
Carlosio
O'Neill is doing a professional job and that's all you can say about him. I'm sure that at least 2 of our last 3 managers would have done as well if not better if they'd had the same financial backing. He's made a few major mistakes as every manager does but to his credit he seems to be able to get the best out of players by building their confidence and a good team spirit. But I am very disappointed with his transfer deailings (eg Knight in, Cahill out) I also fail to see why a "Top Club" cannot find a permanent, quality RB after 2 transfer windows have have now passed.
villacross
I agree totally with this article. Expectations are way too high and we expect instant success. You only have to look at the predictions on this site, I think we'd be six points clear at the top. The bottom line is we need Europe to attract the top players. It's that simple I'm afraid. Players get paid so much now, its just down to that. Kuht and Woodgate got offered twice thier currents wages to play for other teams but didn't move there for one reason only - no Europe.
tarzan
I just hope things do not start spiraling down hill from tomorrows game. Villa need to push on and not start falling back to where we were. It would be so easy for the team to slip to 7th 8th 10th and for that end of season feeling to start early.
col8
No, I dont think we are realistic, I really dont. We're re-building the club, both on the pitch and off it, things are progressing very nicely thankyou very much, yet some are still not happy. They expect the decay and decline of the Ellis regime to be eradicated completely overnight, the club to be winning every game, MON to be signing every world superstar out there, and a top four placing to be assured come seasons end. Realistic? Absolutely not.
glensider
Booed off by some at half time on saturday, after the season we've had. That shows how realistic some of us are.
glensider
 

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