Vital Villa: Cometh the Summer, Stayeth the Hare?
Cristiano Ronaldo has none of it and Gareth Barry may be losing it as he becomes more influenced by Stevie G, however for Marlon Harewood, there`s loyalty in abundance as he admits he wants to stay on at Villa Park for next season.
The former West Ham front-man had a fairly limited season, as he became a somewhat unwanted summer signing by Villa in a transfer window that promised everything, but didn`t give us that much.
Marlon`s drive and determination, whether the chips be up, down, or in the deep fat fryer, lead him to quickly become a cult figure, even amongst some who were vehemently against to poach the forward during his drive North to sign for Wigan Athletic.
A number of substitute appearances later suggested that Marlon Harewood may well have been set to become more of a regular, rather than bit part player. His substitute appearances included the odd contribution. This included, scoring including a sublime goal against Reading, later to be replicated in Euro 2008 by Turkey captain Nihat in their 3-2 overturn of the Czech Republic, and an over-head kick that would have had far more press coverage, had it been in the other goal, scored by one Fernando Torres.
However, Marlon failed to break into the starting line-up with any conviction, coupled with news and rumours suggesting that boss Martin O`Neill would be in the market for a new striker during the summer of 2008, the Hare was naturally linked with a move away after just one season. Premier League newboys Stoke City one of the linked clubs, despite this, the player himself believes there is more to come from the Hare, and more to see of Villa, before he looks for pastures new.
"There's a lot more to come from this squad and hopefully a lot more to come from me. I want to play my part.'
He added: "I'm looking forward to my second season here and hopefully I can show more of what I can do - and hopefully I'll get the chance to shine.
"The fans saw what I could do in the second half of last season and I just want to get out there and show my stuff again next season. I cannot wait for pre-season to start.'
"We're just one step away from the UEFA Cup and we don't want to throw that chance away. When I came to the club, all the players were talking about getting into Europe and we did that.
"As soon as I came to Villa I could tell everyone here was hungry for success and last season is just the start."
Considering I`ve seen a suggestion online today that Harewood`s replacement would be E-Mule Heskey, one suggests that the Hare may be of much greater use to Aston Villa than a donkey.