Writer: J P Fear
Date:Thursday July 24 2008
1) As a fans favourite, are you surprised that Brad Friedel appears to be Villa bound?
I was gutted when I heard news that he had requested to leave Rovers, couldn't believe it as I didn't see it coming at all. Having said that as soon as Paul Ince took over there was speculation that Ince was “looking at other goalkeepers”. I'm not surprised now, but at first I was maybe surprised that Aston Villa would be his destination, as if he went anywhere I thought it would be to work with Mark Hughes again at Manchester City, but he will be the undisputed number one at Villa Park.
2) Do you think he'll regret moving from the club where he appears to be worshipped by the fans or was it time for him to go?
Definitely NOT time for him to go!!! He still has a good two or three-years left in him yet. Villa fans probably do not appreciate just how good he is, so for his sake I hope he doesn't see things go wrong. But I feel you'll see the best of him as we have anyway.
3) What is the fans reaction to not only his departure but also the fact he apparently said he wanted to leave and put in a transfer request?
We were shocked, most, like myself were gutted!!! But maybe there was more to the talk that Ince was looking at other goalkeepers than at first appeared?!?! David Bentley going was always likely to happen, but the only time we really thought Brad would leave Rovers would be when he retired.
4) What reception will he get if he does return to Ewood Park this season in a Villa shirt?
He'll get a superb reception, as he's been a great servant to the club. If ANYONE gave him a bad reception I would expect them to be shown the door by those around them!!!
5) Who do you expect will replace him at Rovers?
I'd not mind Jason Brown given a crack, people will say he isn't ready for it but he is a Welsh International and isn't exactly a youngster, not that he's old either. If he doesn't get a chance now I don't think he ever will with Rovers. However, despite the criticism he gets I think Paul Robinson is a very good goalkeeper and will become our new goalkeeper. A move to Ewood would rejuvenate his career so I think it will probably be him as part of the David Bentley to Tottenham Hotspur deal.
6) In a nutshell, what are we getting, a top keeper who'll do a great job or an old keeper looking for one final pay day?
You're getting a great goalkeeper who I personally believe is ONLY bettered by Petr Cech in the Premier League (although others on Vital Blackburn disagree, they think he is better than Cech!)
Good luck Bradders, I (and ALL Rovers fans) are gutted you're going but we wish you well.
With thanks to Walker from Vital Blackburn www.blackburn.vitalfootball.co.uk
Date:Thursday July 24 2008
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