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Martin O'Neill Vs Rafa Benitez (Tale Of The Tape)

I have been really disappointed in the last few weeks with how Rafa Benitez has conducted himself during the so-called Gareth Barry saga.

Rafa has come out with some really unprofessional things since it became apparent that he would be making a move for our captain Barry. I have grown up like so many with the utmost respect for Liverpool, unlike Manchester United they were perhaps the likeable successful team, they have achieved so much in their time and are one of the world`s finest clubs. However I have watched the developments at the club over the past season, there is in-fighting at board level, their manager seems to have lost the plot, making stupid decisions on and off the field and I reckon it is only a matter of time before Liverpool are going to be in serious turmoil.

Benitez has single handily made the whole of the football world, including many Aston Villa fans believe that Gareth Barry would actually consider joining his club. Villa finished just 16 points behind Liverpool in the league as the reds managed to surprisingly finish fourth again, a real shock to all the neutrals, not!! Had it not been for some poor performances from Scott Carson (who we loaned from Liverpool coincidently), who it would appear is incapable of keeping a clean sheet, who knows were we may have finished in relation to Liverpool. Aston Villa have made huge strides under the leadership of both Randy Lerner and Martin O`Neill, and although many would disagree on here, I believe with the right signings, Villa could realistically push Liverpool for 4th place next season, cause I mean lets face it, that will undoubtedly be the position that Liverpool will be after just like every other season, yawn!!

With all that has gone on this week, Rafa has come out today and said that Peter Crouch is worth £15million and Scott Carson is worth £10million, he is obviously not aware that both of these individuals have played at Villa Park and that all us Villa fans are aware of how much these two are worth, £10million between them, if that, certainly nowhere near the £25million mark. He then refuses to pay £16million for Gareth Barry? Barry is twice the player Crouch is, and maybe as much as five times better than Carson is, probably a better keeper in fact!!

I urge Martin O`Neill and the club to avoid doing any business with Rafa Benitez, be that Carson, Crouch, John Arne Riise or Barry. If Barry hands in the transfer request we should refuse him a move to Liverpool just for how unprofessional Benitez has been.

We say Proud History, Bright Future at Villa Park. I believe that, but I reckon there are a few Liverpool fans disillusioned at life under the Hicks/Gillette regime and must be wondering how long Rafa will remain in the job. As this story rolls on, the more and more convinced I become that Barry will remain at Villa Park, I believe he is a professional lad with a huge amount of intelligence and that he must be able to recognise that Villa are about to overtake Liverpool who will inevitably be battling for 4th next season, as usual.

The difference next season is, so will we!!




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The Journalist

Writer: Dan Jones  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday May 23 2008

Time: 1:53PM

Your Comments

i agree with everything you say apart from laying down the blame on carson. i dont want him as villa first choice next season, but one man does not make an army, against fulham and wigan, the team were poor, i think we should give the guy a break. regarding 'the owner of the worlds worst goatee', i fully agree, i understand the stubborn nature of the top bosses, denying obvious fouls and blaming the ref, but benitez has gone too far, he's probably worse than mopurinho was!
bobbyfett
I totally agree with the above, Liverpool will NEVER EVER win the league with Rafa in charge. I would stake my house on that, as its such a banker. He is a disgrace with his dealings over Barry, and I feel that Liverpool are starting to worry that teams may just catch them next season, all with spending about a quarter of what Rafa has spent, says a lot really.
KSarge1
To be honest, I have the utmost respect for Martin O'Neill, top manager, top man. But he is the one coming out with little credit from this, though he knows what he is doing. O'Neill was the first one to come to the press about Liverpool's Barry interest, and he has been to the press on it several times since, hardly the actions of a man supposedly indignant at Rafa for making his Barry interest public. It's clear O'Neill thinks he is losing Gaz Baz and is trying to drive the price up by creating a furore, I don't really recall Benitez saying much about this. As for Carson and Crouch, yes, ridiculously over priced, but they're Liverpool players and they've a right to value them at whetever price they like, just as you can with Barry. I actually really hope you hold on to Barry, I think Villa are building something very special and he is a top player and a great professional, he's at the right club at the moment. (Although with Flamini gone, I wouldn't mind seeing him at Arsenal!)
Little Dutch
Great article. As you say, I used to respect Liverpool and even Benitez. Around the time of his battles with Mourinho, he always came across as the more dignified manager. He was a gentleman. Now though, he is acting like an arrogant ***** and he thinks he can bully Villa around. I would love it if we finished ahead of them (and with Barry in a Villa shirt obviously!)
stpaulmcgrath
Well done Dan, you hit the nail on the head. Rafa's in serious need of a reality check. I for one, have never EVER doubted Gareth's commitment to the Villa or that he will leave. How important will CL bench warming seem to him when he's leading his country into the World Cup Finals? Not very.
Villan-in-Cyprus
Little Dutch you may want to read over which comments and leaks were made first before making your assumption. Rafa is just upset really that he is not getting his 10 Million for Carson, and therefore less transfer funds, of which i am told there is very little.
KSarge1
Little Dutch, the rumour hit the press from an unamed source/scouse. MON was obviously then bombarded by the press about a bid from Liverpool, to which he told them like it was.
Villan-in-Cyprus
No credit from either side, would be nice to knock both the managers heads together to save them bringing any more embarrassment to the clubs. Petty squabbling is childish and they need to grow up!
The Fear
KSarge, Rafa has spent 80M Net in 4 years. Won the champions leage, got to another final and semi, won the FA cup. Would you say that your team have spent a quarter of that?!?!? I would say he has done a reasonably good job with the mess Houllier left him. I do agree though he has let himself and the club down on this occasion with his persuit of Barry. As for winning the Prem well if we had the money Man U and Chelsea had who knows........Your comments about catching us are rediculuous
5 times
5 times - Yes we have spent about 20 million net....and that is a quarter.
KSarge1
5 times, there's a difference between ridiculous and ambitious. How much progress would you say Liverpool are making overall? They are the most likely to drop out of the top 4. The politics going on at the club will repel decent signings. Who will be manager there next season and how certain are you of it? Who will own the club next season and how certain are you of that? There's only one ridiculous comment on here and it was yours.
Villan-in-Cyprus
Disagree 5 times, I would argue that while Villa are some way from winning the Champions Leagues we are only 16 points away from Liverpool in the league, if Villa sign two or three top players and perform better all Villa really have to do is get maybe 10 more points next season, cause I am sure Liverpool will drop 6, lets face they have no money to spend, they are asking for prices that no club will be willing to pay, 4th is for the taking, Everton and Aston Villa will be competing with Liverpool next year, obviously not in the CL but certainly in the league.
young_jonah
20M in last 4 years? Seems low to me.....Young was 10M, Baros 6.5M, Petrov 7M Reo Coker 7M, Harewood 4M, Knight 3.5M...... Either way spending 80M net and getting to 2 CL Finals, 1 semi, winning it and a Carling Cup Final and an FA cup win is a decent recod don't you agree? People are too quick to judge rafa's record if you ask me. But like I say I cannot argue with your fans criticisms of his Barry persuit as its been disappointing
5 times
Don't worry KSarge1, scousers can't even spell ridiculous, yet alone work out the definition;)
Villan-in-Cyprus
"Villa could realistically push Liverpool for 4th place next season, cause I mean lets face it, that will undoubtedly be the position that Liverpool will be after just like every other season, yawn!!" Well, this is the first season that we finished fourth under Rafa. The previous three seasons we finished fifth, third, and third again. As with finishing ONLY 16 points behind us, we're ONLY 11 points behind Manu, but you're saying that you have a better chance of overtaking us than we do of overtaking the champions!!!!! By the way, Villa were ONLY 18 points behind us last season, so you only cut the deficit by two points this season, hardly a club that's about to over take us.
JohnDoe
So Liverpool have over-achieved in two years by finishing a place higher than expected, well done them. The wheels are about to fall off the wagon that is Liverpool, but I can wait a year to say - I told you so. Look at the facts, an idiot of a manager, a board that dont give a toss, and dont seem to realise what a great club they have. As I say Liverpool are one of the world's finest teams, but I think they are close to throwing it all down the pan, unless next season they have a chairman and board who is willing to take Liverpool back to the top, where some people believe they belong, I just cant see it though. And as for Barry he aint going anywhere, least of all Liverpool, unless there are some huge changes at Anfield this summer.
young_jonah
By the way, Villa's net spending the past four seasons is 34 mil, not 20 mil.
JohnDoe
Doe - we outsocred you comfortably, we have potential to bring in signings this close season, do you? If we improve in certain areas, defensively in particular, we will win more. With a playmaker and another winger we will break down more teams stting behind the ball, sp we will win more. IT's loking good her. It only looks *****ty at Liverpool from where I'm standing, son.
Jongekki
My word give Villa Torres and Gerrard and we would finish in the top 4 without a doubt.
KSarge1
On the other hand JohnDoe, Villa have improved their end of season's total by 18 points in ONLY 2/3 years, yet Liverpool's has dropped by ONLY 6. Just face it, if the stats continue in this recent trend then you're ONLY in the s h i t.
Villan-in-Cyprus
Fair enough, if the story came from an unnamed source first, one could deduce it was Rafa that was behind it, but I'd say it's more likely to be Barry's agent. Still, O'Neill went to the press several times with the complaints. Arsenal have a similar situation with Hleb, but all Wenger will say is "he's not for sale." Realistically, Hleb has two years on his current deal and will not resign, so of course he is for sale, Wenger complaining to FIFA about Inter suggests as much. I think O'Neill is clever enough to know what he is doing and by making sure everyone keeps talking about Barry, his price climbs. Arsenal performed a similar feat with the Anelka sale, our initial offer at the beginning of that summer was £10m. By the end of the summer we'd spent so long making sure everybody knew that "Anelka is going nowhere" and "he's not for sale" that we ended up getting £23m for him. Don't be surprised if Barry is eventually sold in August for a much bigger price than the one Rafa touted to Villa a few weeks back. O'Neill, as ever, has the clubs interests at heart, but slating Rafa is a bit unnecessary.
Little Dutch
Jongekki, "we have potential to bring in signings this close season, do you?" Yes, we might sign a player named Barry, do you know him? :)
JohnDoe
Good article. Rafa is behaving like a petulant child.
evoflash
Yeah I know him, isn't he the one that Liverpool really really want but can't afford? ;)
Villan-in-Cyprus
I'm sorry Mr Fear, you usually make a lot of points I agree with but it's always been a pet peeve of mine when people result to "Bang heads together to resolve petty arguments." I hardly call the prospect of losing one of your important players who could mean the difference between a multi million pound business maintaining its drive forwards and not. I'm not saying barry is the be all and end all but he is currently a large part of our spirit. As to the story in hand, it's a bit presumptious to assume we'll over take liverpool in the league but i do think IF we get the right quality in we're in with a shout. My opinion of benitez is not a good one, i think he's handled this poorly.
johnnyuk
Scousers? i doubt even 20% of Liverpool fans are scousers! Just glory hunters from the 80's. Oh yeah you won the European cup and FA cup not long ago either.....
KSarge1
LD, the journalist who broke the story of Liverpool's bid for Barry says that the source wasn't from Liverpool fc. Villan-in-Cyprus, Liverpool improved 16 points since Rafa took over, in Houllier's last season we accumulated only 60 points, so we have improved also. It will take a lot of investment for Villa to break the top four. Spurs finished fifth twice the past two seasons, spent about 40 mil net this season yet they finished 11th, 14 points worse than last season. It's not going to be a gradual improvement, unless you start spending on Chelsea's scale. It will take time and money, and astute signings, for Villa to break in the top four. It might happen soon, but I don't think it will happen next season.
JohnDoe
Na forget the head banging. I say settle all this over an armwrestle. MON would surely beat Rafa?
Villan-in-Cyprus
Sorry to peeve you Johnny! I don't want Barry to go, just don't want the public war or words feeding the press, no need at all. Liverpool can bid, we can turn it down, seems easy enough to me!
The Fear
"Benitez has single handily made the whole of the football world, including many Aston Villa fans believe that Gareth Barry would actually consider joining his club. Villa finished just 16 points behind Liverpool in the league as the reds managed to surprisingly finish fourth"......not being funny but i think most of our players would consider leaving us for liverpool. As you say not suprisingly they finish fourth every year, that in itself is an incentive not to mention they were European Champions, finalists and semi finalists in the last 3 years. I think some people need to take of the rose tints and put some perspective on things and i'm not in any way undermining what we've done in the past two years its just we are not going to get to that level in the near future. Liverpool are at that level now its not suprising that heads get turned despite our good intentions.
themightyatom
Villan in cyprus.....How is my comments rediculous? 1st time in 3 years we have finished below Arsenal so how are we suddenly going to finish outside the top 4. The Arabs will no doubt own the club soon, build the 70000 stadium (that only Man Utd and Liverpool could fill) and there will not be an issue.....
5 times
I don't mind us having a war of words with redscouse. It actually achieves in a roundabout way, putting them on a level playing field with us. That hasn't been the case for years because we have usually rolled over and played dead. Stupid Goatee is trying to get top money for his squad players Crouch and Alonso who combined may be worth £10m. He wants £10m for an average keeper. Nobody is forced to pay it, so he can ask what he wants. Wether he gets it depends on how desperate clubs get. At the same time he is trying to burgle us for our international club captain. He can try that as well. I just hope that at the end of it we finish up with the best result. That would mean either keeping Barry and buying Crouch for about £5/6M (he only has a year left on his contract so the buying club holds the power). Selling Barry for about £15m and Crouch or a £20m+ cash (he has 2 years on his contract so we hold the power). Hopefully we will not get Carson, he is not bad but not good enough to take us to the next level. As an aside, I just hope somebody is having a giraffe about Robinson. He is without doubt the worst keeper, not only in the Prem, but possibly the whole of the football league. He is desperate. You only have to watch every goal that Spuds concede and actually see, not only his mistakes, but actually how far away from every shot he is. On about 25% of Spuds goals he dives after the ball hits the net. When you understand this and watch replays of goals he lets in it is actually quite comical (and scary that we are linked with him). As an example watch the goal that Barry curled in the top corner against him last season. Nobody blamed the keeper, everybody said it was a great goal. It was, but Robinson was about 3 miles away from it. A decent keeper would have saved it.
voiceoftheholte
themightyatom, I think our position is made much more powerful than it would be if alot of our players weren't local boys. Some of them are fulfilling their boyhood dream. And as for Barry, I can think of more reasons for him to stay than for him to leave and i'm sure he can as well.
Villan-in-Cyprus
5 times, true, you can both fill your stadiums with lots of glory hunting foreigners. Well done. And for the second time, it's spelt RIDICULOUS.
Villan-in-Cyprus
'the journalist who broke the story of Liverpool's bid for Barry says that the source wasn't from Liverpool fc'. JohnDoe, common sense would tell you that a journalist wouldn't risk incriminating his scouse, sorry I meant scource.
Villan-in-Cyprus
Excellent article and whole heartedly agree. 5 times, you are not speaking out of the correct orifice. Houllier see up the squad to win the Champs league, Rafa was given the squad. We have a much better chance of catching you than you have of catching the top 2 and as someone else said, without Gerrard and Torres you are a mid table team. I know that if you took any teams best 2 players then they would all struggle but no other teams rely so much on their captain and main goal scorer.
Villan444
set not see
Villan444
the mighty atom is a tw@
Adbo9
Villan444, We didn't have Torres last season, or the season before, yet we finished third both times, are you telling me that it's all up to Gerrard?
JohnDoe
I heard an interesting comment today. Drodga will be leaving Chelski in the summer, only to be replaced by Torres!!! Dont shoot the messenger JohnDoe!! I cant reveal my source it's someone at the Echo!!! LOL. Anyway how much has RAFA spent? and he only gets you into 4th???? Are the owners going to take out another mortgage for new players???
gappy65
Is that right JohnDoe that the former cast from Bread together with Yosser Hughes are having a whip round for Rafa to buy new players? LOL
gappy65
It was leaked from a scouse source. FACT:"Rafa's When your captain wants to leave" quote tells us he had contact with Barry or Barry's people without permission which is against FA rules, or he wants us to think that. FACT: Pool have no money for players untill they sell some players. FACT: If MON acted have as bad as Rafa in approching a Liverpool player we would be getting slated in the press and brought before the FA. Also how does Liverpool have a right, A RIGHT to add an extra 10 MILL to the price of every player compared to the same player at Villa. FACT AND THIS ONE HAS TO BE SAID AND TAKEN ON BOARD: THERE IS NOT A BIG 4, ONLY A BIG 3!
Tallaght Villan
Benitez fears o`neill one on one.
british84
There are two separate issues being discussed here. Firstly the Barry soap opera, which has been played by both mangers, with MON taking the lead if anyone wants to count the actual real quotes and not settles for conjecture and rumour. Frankly, I think MON is intelligent enough to have engineered it and is winning the game from that point of view. This leaves Barry and what he wants to do as the real deal maker or breaker. Nothing the fans of either club could say would change a thing. As for the idea of Villa getting to the top 4, while over taking Liverpool, and in the next season, that I find over optimistic. Villa are progressing under MON and will carry on doing so, but unless Chav level investment is found, then Villa will carry on progressing at a steady pace. At the same time, all the top 4 will be progressing at least the same pace as Villa, probably more rapidly with the experience of playing CL being the real difference in class between the top 4 and the rest. MON has a big job ahead of him if the Villa fans want to be realistic.
el ahmer
Tallaght Villan, Dont let the scousres get to you. We all know they have ideas above there station in life. It's a long, long time sinse the red side of stanley park was a force to reckoned with. They are playing catch up just like the rest of us. It's just they cant stand not being the Bastion of English football, The way they once were!!!!!! They have fell from grace with a huge bump LOL
gappy65
adbo9. your obviously a c*ck squatter
themightyatom
el ahmer; Do you believe that nonsense you have written???? Because if so you really need to wake up and smell the coffee!! Livrpool are a club in total turmoil, the manager and elements of the board communicate through the press. They need to take out a huge mortgage to build a new stadium, in addition to the mortgage they had to but players last summer. where does it end? It will end with Liverpool imploding. One more thing the press the manger and the board use to communicate. Is it the same press that all the scousers bycotted a few years ago????
gappy65
If it is the same press el ahmer then your manager and board's hypocricy knows no bounds!!!!!
gappy65
gappy65, thank you for your comment, though you seem to be talking about a different subject now! If you can show any factual inaccuracies with anything I have written, I’d be delighted to be enlightened with some facts.
el ahmer
You know what? I don't care about the bin dippers, never liked them - they've got to come to terms with Manu taken over their historic records. They can have GB - but not on their terms. It's a non story as he's under contract for two years so we've got him by the baby Bentleys I'm afraid.
tarzan
Yes we'll do business with Rafa, we'll have to, cause I hate to say it but I do believe that Gareth will move to Anfield. I just hope we hold out for a minimum of 15m cash, and dont entertain the idea of taking any of Rafa's rejects as make-weights in any deal.
glensider
hang on the mighty atom, its plainly obvious to me that you're a cockhound............ your hoard cocks like theyre going out of fashion, get over your fascination - its unhealthy - and stop looking after the inlaws dog while youre bride is down the elms chatting me & moz up !!
Adbo9
First of all i have to congratulate you on a great article. Now atom are you a villa fan? I hate it when fans call themselves realists when comparing there so-called beloved club's with underachieving clubs like Liverpoo. Ooh there so good they won a cup 3 years back and can spend [waste] a butt load of money on average players, Torres excluded. Their highest league position is 2nd just like ours and until they win the league i won't rate them any higher than us or Everton. Closet scousers make me sick!
villaaaah
"Their highest league position is 2nd just like ours and until they win the league i won't rate them any higher than us or Everton" All time premier league points, Liverpool 1075, Aston Villa 877, Everton 800. Guess the stats prove you wrong villaaaah.
JohnDoe
Personally, as much as I despise Liverpool and their coach ( I didn't before benitez came in, and now as far as I'm concerned you might as well be a team in La Liga with the amount of Spaniards you have and want to bring in) I think Arsenal are the ones to come out of the top 4 next year. I think Hleb will be gone and Fabregas will re-consider once he leaves. That means there whole midfield next year are going to be new imports who will need a year to adapt to the premier league because he's after the frenchies who's league is far less superior to ours. That said, I can see Everton and Villa in the top 4 next year (pending on signings of course). Arsene Wenger is losing his grip on the club and strikers like Bendter and Walcott aren't going to keep you in the top 4. (Sorry but I can't see why anyone gives a ***** about Walcott, I haven't seen him do anything worth a damn and should be playing for a club like Middlesbrough)
los_angeles_villan
lol and what asshole thinks MON is going to sign just 1 player. lol.
los_angeles_villan
Number of times I have watched Chelsea v Liverpool over the last few seasons and almost lapsed into unconciousness - 1685. Yawn, your team must be quickly becoming the most boring in the universe, remove Torres from your side and watching Liverpool is the equivalent of tuning-in to live Dalek football. Seriously - Rush, Barnes, Dalgleish...Masccherano, Voronin, Pennant, Crouch, jees, shameful. Also as far as the stadium goes, given the choice between watching my team play in one of the countries most historic stadiums or watching them play in a 70,000 seater Tescos surrounded by Japanese businessmen - I know which one I would prefer.
sick note
is JohnDoe a closet villa fan? He seems to spend more time on here than anywhere else. Oh wait, nobody posts on vitalliverpool do they? As for Barry to Liverpool blah, blah blah, yawn, yawn, he aint going anywhere.
jonah
Well said sick note. LA Villan, even when Houllier was in charge they were boring and put 9 men behind the ball only to score a goal or 2 on the counter attack. All fans watch their team with tinted specs on but none more than the Scousers. They are living in a goldfish bowl. All the talk about Carra should be starting centre back for England was only from their fans. When Agger is fit Carra gets pushed out to full back. JohnDoe, I am telling you that its all up to Gerrard. He is that good and the rest of your team are mainly flops bought by Rafa. The reason that you finished 3rd both times was because you had a head start on everyone else with your history, massive fan base of supporters stealing hubcaps and giving the profits to your board to buy players. We have got a Billionaire now and aren't in any debt along with a few other teams. The end is nigh for the scousers unless you get rid of those Dicks and get DIC in. Top 2 are uncatchable and the other spaces are up for grabs.
Villan444
Suprised that last post was taken off but was only meant in jest as banter and nothing that hasn't been said before by many. Hope it wasn't too close to the truth @;-D
Villan444
el ahmer; It's not a different subject unfortunately it's about Liverpool or shall we say there fans and manager, who are convinced that they are superior to all clubs in the land and dare I say europe. They think all they have to do is I make a comment in the papers to unsettle a player they want and the player comes running. Well you are sadely mistaken! that was the case many years ago. Liverpool Fc was a Bastian of English football, a club to which we all strived to like. But now my friend Liverpool are no better than the rest of us. In fact in worse shape finacially than Villa, if you fail to maintain your debts you will be in serious trouble. You havea board that do not communicate, you have a manager that believes his own publicity, and fans of your once great club can not see the damage that this is doing to you and your club. Rafa in my humble opinion is a good manager not a great one. The fans are so rapped up in the turmoil that they can not see the errors that Rafa makes, the rotation policy does not work and never has, the cost of which is huge, you have not challenged the title for many years and you dont look like doing it again soon. Gerard will leave next summer for a club that can challenge. But the fans do it march with banners berating the board, while rafa and his incompitence goes unnoticed. You think Barry cant see that???? Maybe Barry will move to Liverpool. But if he cant see the turmiol of the club, the prospects of sitting endlessly on the bench, as a reason not to go there then he really is desperate for CL football over all else. The nothing on Gods green earth will keep him at Villa.....
gappy65
jonah, I only come here if there is an article about Liverpool. Stop those articles and you won't see me. Villan444, all I hear from rival fans is how overrated Gerrard is, now you're telling me that his performances are the only reason that we finish in the top four? You're deluded if you think so.
JohnDoe
Javier Mascherano (midfielder) - River Plate 46 appearances 0 goals, Corinthians 17 appearances 0 goals, West Ham 5 appearances 0 goals, TOTAL appearances 68 TOTAL goals 0. Liverpool manager Benitez pays 18.6million for this player. YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWWWWWWNNN! Why bother trying to score at all? Why not just wait until the opposition get sleepy and sneak the ball into the net?
sick note
I never said Gerrard was overrated and I am sure at least 95% of your fans would agree. One of my best mates is a Liverpool fan and I normally watch them in Europe with him. You aren't exactly attractive to watch and your tactics are normally to counter the opposition rather than play your own game. Without your midfield maestro you would have not got anywhere near as many points this year. The free kick (which never should have been given anyway) against us for starters.
Villan444
sick note, He's a defensive midfielder, like Makalele, his job isn't to score goals. His job is to distrubt opposition play, and he's very good at it, one of the best in the world. By the way, we scored 119 goals this season, more than any other English club. I guess there were a lot of sleepy players huh.
JohnDoe
Sorry Mr. Fear but you are way off base - with the utmost respect to you - should O'Neill simply hide in the background and let this club publicly poach our best player and captain? MON is successful because he is prepared to meet fire with fire..... Only two Villa managers in my lifetime have been prepared to stand their ground publicly against so-called bigger clubs that have attempted to get our players on the cheap or in a backhand way. Martin O'Neill is the second. A certain Mr. Ron Saunders being the first. You can argue that Gregory also tried over the Yorke situation, but he was more focussed on blaming the player.....
gmvillan
yep you are right john, you are like chelsea (the other team I mentioned earlier) yaaaaaawn. spending loads of money to play boring negative footy. total goals season seen by Arsenal fans 105, Aston Villa 105 Man Utd 102 Liverpool 95 YAWWWWWWWN. All that cash spent and all you can do is play negative footy. Lets face it liverpool and chelsea are the sam boring, its why you will never catch Man Utd, and you know it, that's why you all whine so much. mascherano, voronin, kuyt, pennant, crouch, all players signed recently, all worthy of a championship playoff final. yawwwwwwwn. look forward to life in your big plastic stadium, with your club owned by two guys who hate each other, who are looking to sell it to someone else who puts Thaksin Shinawatra's human rights record in the shade. happy days. UTV!
sick note
It isn't poaching gmvillan, it is bidding and being re-buffed. We have done it before ourselves. It is just unseemly to see both clubs fighting in public, they can be very strong if wrongdoings have happened behind the scenes. For me it would have said a 1000 more words if we had taken the 'unlike other clubs, we don't wash our dirty linen in public, we do things professionally and through the right channels, therefore, we have no comment to make on this matter'. (Taking aside whether the other club has done anything wrong as that is the other argument). The hizzy fits and slagging off of each other is just naff!
The Fear
sick note, I say again, we scored the most goals of all the English clubs, including Arsenal and Manu, how is that negative football? Villa only scored four more goals than us in the league, and most of your goals came from set plays, and that makes you the paragon of sexy football!!!!! Give me a break, Villa play is more dull than ours, at least we don't have to depend on a free kick or a corner to score. By the way, your opinion of Mascherano show what you know about football, naff all.
JohnDoe
The games against the red scouse are going to have that little bit more spice about them next season, following this little very un tête-à-tête between Martin and his counterpart at Anfield, no matter what colour shirt Gareth is wearing.
glensider
Um, you played more games than everyone else, to compare you have to compare on a level basis, even you must realise that basic fact right? In the league you play the same teams, i'm not including European qualifiers against part-timers. Fair, no? I don't like teams that employ negative tactics or players like Mascherano, so I don't know anything about footy, you do like those sort of tactics, so you are an expert? Not sure how that works?? Typical arrogance of a supporter of a 'big 4' club, anyone who disagrees knows 'naff all' (naff all? how old are you? remember when footy was played with a pigs bladder?) I'm not claiming to be the worlds greatest tactician, but i have stood on the Holte, watched villa home and away including 3 trips to anfield (all defeats), been to 2 world cups, 2 euro championships, and watched games in Hong Kong, Japan and Australia. The thing is you dont need to be a genius to figure out that Liverpool are boring to watch and if you pause for a moment and give it some thought you will realise this is true. It's why you can progress in Europe but not in the league, it's obvious, but hey what do I know? Anyway, if you're bored debating this sort of stuff with such football dullards as myself, maybe don't put your opinion on a Villa message board.
sick note
sick note, again you show your ignorance of football. You don't like teams that employ negative players like Mascherano!!! So you don't like Manu, Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool, Everton, Portsmouth, Man City, West Ham, Spurs, Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Wigan, etc... All of those teams employed a defensive midfielder like Mascherano. Anderson and Hargreaves for Manu, Makalele and Mikel fro Chelsea, Flamini and Gilberto for Arsenal, Carsley and sometimes Neville for Everton, Papa Bouba Diop for Portsmouth, Hamman and Michael Johnson for Man City, Hayden Mullins for West Ham, Zokora for Spurs, Butt for Newcastle, Boateng for Middlesbrough, Brown for Wigan etc... Even Aston Villa had a Mascherano type player, Nigel Reo-Coker, how many goals did he score this season? By the way, we've played Toulouse in the CL qualifiers, a club that finished third in the French league one the season before.
JohnDoe
Yeah JD, the french league is quality?? Anderson, Flamini, Gilberto, Hamman and even Mikel have more strings to their bows than just defending or breaking up play, thats half the players that you mentioned. Nige should be playing the Makelele role but roams forward and even set up a goal from a shot in our last game. You are the one showing your ignorance now. You need to face the fact that even though Liverpool scored more goals than any other Prem team in all competitions (as you keep mentioning,) you were playing against sausage sellers and you played more games than anyone else, you play crap football and NO neutrals enjoy watching you. Your diehard ignorance and devotion to the team is admirable but you really should listen to supporters from other teams, not just Villans, to realise the situation of your tunnel visioned lack of understanding of the real world of football.
Villan444
Villan444, Chelsea played three more games than us, Arsenal one game less, Manu two games less, and we outscored Chelsea and Manu by more than 10 goals, Arsenal by three goals. "Anderson, Flamini, Gilberto, Hamann and even Mikel have more strings to their bows than just defending or breaking up play" So does Mascherano, he's a good passer of the ball, and he scored a goal and assisted on another for us. We don't play as good as Arsenal or Manu, but we play better than the rest of the clubs in the league, including Villa. By the way, Hamann played for us for seven years and he isn't as good as Mascherano. The Argentinean is a much better passer, a better tackler, has more pace than Hamann, and covers more ground. He kept the best player in the world, Kaka, quite in the CL final last year. Kaka only got into the game after Mascherano was subbed for a forward as we were chasing the game, and sick note thinks he's a championship player. Hilarious.
JohnDoe
Manu're outscored you in the league by 13 ( I don't think anyone else other than you is counting friendlies.) They played for 1-0 wins in Europe and in the league at the start of the season. Chelsea just do that anyway. Mascherano is a good player at his job. Its just his job is so negative, and he is not as good as any of the players that you mentioned at going forward other than Nige and Makelele.
Villan444
Villan444, I didn't count friendlies. We were the top scoring club in the CL, scoring nine goals more than Manu and Chelsea, we also outscored Manu in the FA Cup and the League Cup. Makalele doesn't go forward, he only scored one goal for Chelsea in the five years he played there. His job is to protect the defence, get the ball, and short pass it to another midfielder like Lampard or Ballack. How can you say that he's good going forward is beyond me.
JohnDoe
By the way, if you look at the following link you'll find that Liverpool attempted the second most shots in the league behind Manu, and were the fourth best passing team. While Villa on the other hand attempted the eighth most shots and were a dismal 17th best passing team, just ahead of Derby. Even Bolton completed more passes than Villa, which tells us that you're a long ball team, a team that relies on set plays to score most of it's goals. It's been very effective for you, but it's not pretty to watch. And you think that we're boring!!!! http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,11662_2705370,00.html
JohnDoe
I'l say it again - the only way you can compare it to look at like for like (the league) right? RIGHT? This is what the article was about, not about scoring 8 of your CL goals in a game investigated for match fixing. Your arrogant attitude really reminds me of most Man Utd fans, anyone who disagrees just doesnt know footy. This is my OPINION Liverpool are boring, stop surfing through sky sports archives like a sad man trying to prove otherwise, it is my OPINION. None of the midfielders you mentioned with the exception of Makalele are as negative (and I said before Chelsea are the team most similar to you, spending money to play negative footy (it works for them simply because they have so much cash). If you look back I never said Mascherano wasn't a good player, I said the style of football he and other Benitez signings bring to Liverpool is worthy of the Championship, which I now retract as in fairness the Championship is quite exciting. Why do Liverpool progress in Europe but do poorly in the League? Because, they are unable to score the number of goals necessary to claim all 3 points on a regular basis, which is why IN MY OPINION they will continue to struggle, no? Which is what this article was about, no? If they stick with this style IN MY OPINION Liverpool will continue to decline and are clearly the team the rest of us are aiming at. Ditch your arrogant MAN UTD attidude and give it some thought and maybe just maybe you will see there is some truth in what I am saying. UTV!
sick note
I said "OTHER" than Makelele.
Villan444
sick note, you said that Mascherano is worthy of a championship playoff final. Now you say that you never said he wasn't a good player!!!!!! All the players I mentioned are just as or even more negative than Mascherano, including Nigel Reo-Coker. As with our boring football, I think the stats show that we're a much better passing team than Villa, and create more goal mouth action, yet you claim that we are boring and Villa isn't, just because you scored four more goals in the league. You need to ditch your attitude mate, and remove your blinkers. We're a better team than you give us credit for, and our play is better than all the other premier league clubs bar Arsenal and Manu. You talk about my arrogance, I still stand by my earlier statement, if you don't see how good a player Mascherano is then you don't know anything about football. He's one of the top defensive midfielders in the world. He was part of the Argentina team that was the best going forward in the last world cup. He gave the other midfielders freedom to go forward, as he does with Liverpool. Most teams now have a defensive midfielder like him, as I showed in my earlier post. It's not a negative tactic, as Argentina showed, it give the attacking midfielders the freedom to go forward and attack without worrying about defensive responsibilities, and he's one of the best in that role. He's the second best tackler in the league, behind Reo-Coker, while starting 11 games less. He also contributes on the offensive end, he scored a goal and assisted on another. Also he's a good passer of the ball, wither it's long or short, and he's a good dribbler. He's still 23 years old and can get even better. He's worth what we paid for him, that's my opinion. Villan444, Sorry, my mistake.
JohnDoe
Maybe you should marry Mascherano. Go on, just ask him. By focusing on him you ignore the question why do Liverpool do poorly in the league but well in Europe? Why? Because of your negative style. Are Liverpool in turmoil? that's what this article is about, no? not you wanting to honeymoon in buenos aires with javier. I'm not saying Villa are great, just that we are slowly progressing. The comment about championship playoffs finals was a mistake, (like i said they are actually exciting) what I was trying to say is that Liverpool are dull as fck to watch, Mascherano was an example, yes he is a good player, in the same way cliff thorburn was good at snooker. Liverpool have plenty of good players, just look at the total league points if you want to show you are better than us right now. But I predict this, Liverpool wont win the league under Benitez. I agree with the article. You can go on insisting you are Real Madrid if you want.
sick note
We do poorly in the league by our own standards, I agree, but there are 16 clubs in the premier league who love to be in our position, including Villa. Never said that we're Real Madrid, I did say that we play better than Villa, and if you think we're dull as fck to watch, where that leaves your club? A club that is a latter day Wimbledon. That relies on long balls and set plays to score goals. A club that even Bolton, who are renowned for their long ball play, completed more passes than. People with glass houses shouldn't throw rocks.
JohnDoe
 

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