Aston Villa - Manager Reaction - Blunderland
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Manager Reaction - Blunderland

Martin O'Neill believes Villa wasted a fantastic opportunity, erm, yes I'd have to agree.

We gifted Sunderland their first away win of the season. We again dropped 3 points that should have been ours. 2 points taken from a maximum of 12 - says it all.

This season will not go down in history for our growth, or our achievement, sadly it will go down as another season we blew a fantastic chance to surpass ourselves, or worse still it will be remembered in the same vain as 1992. We bottled it.

Speaking on the official site, after the Blunderland result, Martin O'Neill said:

'It's been a poor day. It was particularly disappointing because today was the opportunity for us to get back on track, to go and force the pace and force a win.

'We didn't necessarily have to play wonderfully well; it was just about winning the game. But not only did we fail to win it, we lost it. I understand the frustrations of the fans. This is something that we have to put right.'

Too many times this season have we had to put things right, our consistency, the form of some who will remain nameless, and of course the inevitable lack of signings.

We can forget about Europe now, what we need to do is salvage some pride and ensure we finish as high as possible so that any plans O'Neill has for players in the summer can still take place.

It's cat and mouse, you need better players to win things, but you need to win things to get the better players.

'We didn't do well enough for long enough again today. There were misplaced passes and the wind obviously didn't help.

'Then what happens with eight or nine minutes to go, as we were thinking there was still a chance to force a winning goal, we conceded a really lousy goal to lose the game. It was a very poor goal from out viewpoint.'

Sorry, the wind. The wind didn't cause Sunderland to blow the match did it? If you keep the ball on the floor the wind plays no part anyway.

'I think the one goal was obviously going to win it today. We looked nervous, but we had to be the team to get that breakthrough and it didn't happen for us.

'It's up to us. We came back from the Emirates Stadium a couple of weeks ago in an absolutely buoyant mood. We were obviously disappointed at not winning the game.

'But we were looking forward to the rest of the season, thinking we could eke out results, as we have done during the course of the season.

'But it's just failed to materialise. That's three games now where we've not done enough to win the football matches.'

It's more than 3 games sadly and that's why we are imploding. As said we can kiss Europe goodbye now. But we still have to fight for every point - if we allow ourselves to slip further down the table then our final placing really does not reflect the effort and achievement we have made this season.

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The Journalist

Writer: Mike Field Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday March 22 2008

Time: 8:02PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Season is over... we ran out of steam... I am absolutely gutted. However, I am still hopeful about next season. UTV
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22/03/2008 20:20:00

So it was the wrong type of wind Martin? Nothing to do with your incompetence in the transfer market I suppose.
Report Abuse
22/03/2008 20:30:00

Wilf Bouma MOTM again says much for the front line performance. Had a our chance with Everton only picking up one point from 6. Sad to see the season falling apart, still it will put more pressure on MON to perform in the transfer market.
Report Abuse
22/03/2008 21:15:00

We were an absolute shambles today. We did not force the play and won few set pieces - which were we usually score goals from. Carew was the only decent player in the team, Hare looked useful we he came on, why on earth he isnt started and Gabi given a rest. Barry looked a shadow of himself and as for Carson and Zat dont even get me started. 10 million for Carson - i wouldnt give you 1 million now, his clearances were awful and twice flapped at the ball in the first half when the defenders were clearly able to deal with it. There is little point in going on about Cahill leaving and replacing him with Zat, unfortunetly MOL had no idea that Curtis was gonna be out for so long, but we have the chance to at least restore some pride against Bolton and hopefully not lose to badly to Man Ure, but it dont look good. Either way i hope we can get i right before the visit of our rivals in April. Either way i too have to concede that or euro dream is over, despite Everton having a blip, others now around us are in with achance and in better form. So its on with the summer transfers. I make it at least One goalkeeper, one central defender, one right back, cover for Barry and someone to push Carew and the others up front - 5 signings Minimum ..... Cant see it .... CAN YOU ???
Report Abuse
22/03/2008 22:12:00

this is a stupid result. what is the comment about the wind? sounds like an excuse. something is showing here and i think it is an overall mis-management story. don't get me wrong, MON is superb but there has been a lack of foresight this season. he is too reliant on his faves, and has not secured quality backup. did he think players would last the season without injury, bookings, getting tired, et al... on top of this he doesn't play those he did buy! huh?
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23/03/2008 00:01:00

As an outsider looking in i just cant understand Villa. Similar to us one of only a handful of big teams outside the top4 who have big potential to actually crack it.i think with decent investment - like more signings like ashley young etc then you really would be a force next season MON as everyone knows is a top manager yet i think he missed a huge trick in January aswell as the summer in bringing good talent to your squad. Youre really not that far away at all and if instead of bringing mediocrity like Knight, Harewood, Routledge, Knight etc u bought some better quality in youd be in 4th im sure of it. Is it Poor selection from MON or The scouting? Whatever it is im sure ul get it together in the summer. Hope you get into Europe this season u deserve it anyways!
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23/03/2008 00:40:00

Gutted, where are our options to mix it up a bit? Oh yeah we don't have any, I can't believe we will have done a whole season without a recognized right back that is dog poo management. I wouldn't dream of going to work without the full array of tools. MON cannot blame lack of players available when he sells the squad players we did have. Mellberg has been ok but poor Gardner shouldn't be forced to play there he should be replacing the tired Barry.
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23/03/2008 07:35:00

MON`s head as gone along with 90% of the players,he can`t understand where we are going wrong because he keeps playing same team,can someone ask him why he brings on Osbourne ( who he wanted to go out on loan weeks ago ) when he has 2 of his midfield signings on the bench ??? Barry makes us tick and when he`s playing cr@p it spreads through the whole team by the looks.
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23/03/2008 07:40:00

Maybe MON has done a trick that O'Leary performed a couple of seasons ago and lost the dressing room? The players have been behind him all season and now I think that they are losing their faith playing people like Carson and Petrov who clearly aren't up to the challenge of the prem. Zat looked O.K. at the start of the season but playing in front of Scotty would damage anyones confidence. At least the 3 have been axed from the England squad.
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23/03/2008 11:09:00

I think the centre of our midfield is a worry. We have very little in the way of options there and when Barry and Reo are off the pace we can't create anything other than hoof-tastic Bolton stuff. Its surely time for a shake up. Otherwise we are going to get (even more ) humiliated at old trafford than usual. Carson can not start!! Its that simple. He is too shaken.
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23/03/2008 11:10:00

i was there unfortunately, and i was nervous every time the ball went to carson. bring back sorensen, sack knight, play olly CB, gardner RB. ridiculous to suggest the season is over tho. still 1 point away from intertoto...
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23/03/2008 11:10:00

Time to stop with the he is building for the future excuse and start getting some players in that will do it for us now. I have always been very proud to have MON as our manager but if he cant cut it in the transfer market we wont be a success. If we have another failed transfer window then I am not sure I can keep on supporting him.
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23/03/2008 13:53:00

OK I did not get to the match and only saw the bits on MotD but I can't work out why Bouma is leading the Man of the Match voting. It seem to me his passing is too often astray. I looked on the BTYahoo match analysis and, if that is to be believed, then out of 59 passes he attempted 24 went astray ie back to the opposition.That is a failure rate of 41%. Is that good enough for a professional footballer? According to the same site Gardner had a 100% success with 27 passes and Gareth made 62 passes with a failure rate of 31% that is 19 failures. Need I say more?
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23/03/2008 14:09:00

tbh noone played that well. i rate carew was our best player because of how he handled SO many long balls up to him, but noone was close enough to him and sunderland did well at closing him down. laursen was noticeably solid as well. bouma was not at his best, but then again noone was. gardner can't defend and must be played in midfield. bbc rates ashley young as man of the match...que? not one of his better days (but still should have made the england cut)
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23/03/2008 14:33:00

not sure blaming the wind is the best idea, surely Sunderland had the same wind to contend with!??!
The Fear
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23/03/2008 19:19:00

Talking about O'Neill and his transfer policy a friend asked me to name a starting XI of all active Villa or former Villa players who I would have in a team TODAY just to see how many top signings O'Neill has made. I came up with the following: James, A.Hughes, Bouma, Laursen, Mellberg, Young, Hitzlsperger, Barry, Reo-Coker, Carew, Agbonlahor SUBS: Sorensen, Cahill, Steve Davis, Milner, Cutris Davies. That means that only 3 O'Neill signings made the line-up. Is that good?? Maybe David James is going back too far, maybe Hitzlsperger too but that means moving Milner and Sorensen into the starting XI, niether are O'Neill signings. Now I must say this team was thrown together after a few pints in around 5mins so it may not be definitive by any means!! Feel free to mess around with it - it would be interesting to see any other O'Neill signings in there.
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24/03/2008 11:36:00

Things dont look too hot right now, not with a trip to Old Trafford on the horizon. Such a let down. A shocker of a performance in front of another Villa Park full house. All in all, not a good day, and its going to be difficult now to turn things around and get back on track. Didn't look a patch on the team that thrilled us regularly during the early months of the season.
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25/03/2008 01:30:00


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