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An Expensive Villa Summer?

O'Neill won't be standing in JPA's way it seems should he wish to leave, how many more will he allow to go, more importantly can he allow more to go, without stretching Lerner's coffers.

The lack of both players and quality players has been our major problem for 3 seasons now. As soon as an injury hits a major player the weekly struggle begins.

Fair do's to the kids who have stepped up, their efforts albeit not always of the highest quality have built a base for survival and of course next season they are a season older. In addition Petrov may be up to steam and Young and Carew will hopefully be in a similar situation, but then what.

Despite his recent whoopsie Sorensen remains a decent enough keeper, I can't see the sense in spending big to get better, maybe a replacement for Taylor though, he didn't impress when the chance came.

At Fullback I don't think O'Neill is totally happy with Bouma and Samuel could be gone. Hughes doesn't look to be featuring and Bardsley isn't good enough for me, so 2 in 2 out ?

Central defence is a huge conundrum.

Team with Laursen = good, team without, not so good.
Mellberg with Laursen = good, without, not so good.
Cahill is ok as cover and could get better.
Ridgewell maybe going too.

I have no clue as to Laursen's longer term fitness, but past history suggests there's a question, here's where I'd invest heavily, my priority one.

Midfield, can't see anyone but Hendrie going. OK I accept McCann is struggling but as cover he'll more than do. Petrov, well doesn't matter what I think, he's one of the few quality members along with Mellberg and Laursen, and O'Neill picks him regardless.

Barry, man of the season for 2 seasons or more now, again quality.
Berger, OK as cover and as an option on the bench he'll stay.

Of the youngsters Gardener seems in the O'Neill mould, Davis does not, can't see him departing this season though, big mistake if he does.

So second big investment, but how. A minimum of one quality players needed, midfield hardman, a must, I'd even look to bringing in 2 more too experienced Premiership players too.

Up front we have a surfeit of riches some say, but like most sides in Europe we don't have a 20 goal a season man. Carew isn't, Young isn't, Agbonlahor might be but next season on the wing ? Moore similarly, Maloney ditto. Lots of youth, tonnes of inexperience, I'd say lots of quality too but not for now, not yet.

So here's priority 3 and as an interested fan, another conundrum based around what tactics O'Neill wishes to employ.

We do need an experienced striker though, I hope its not someone like Zamora, Harewood, someone like Defoe, Keane, perhaps, or 40 mill for Berbatov :)

So backbone replacements a must. One central defender, one hard man midfield, one experienced striker, a minimum requirement 10-12 mill, 14-20 mill and your guess is as good as mine. 35-40 million too much?

When you consider that would, if only Angel, Samuel and Hendrie go, keep the squad below sensible size when you consider the age and experience of the majority of the players, will it be enough for another long Premiership season.

So ideally for me 2 fullbacks, 1 or 2 extra midfield players and another striker is needed 7 new players, never ???

I accept, O'Neill will hopefully find a few from the out of contract pool and even a gem from the lower divisions, but whatever happens I hope for the first time in nearly a decade I can look at the bench come December 07 and still see genuine options on the bench, not make do oldsters and inexperienced kids.

Going to be an expensive and busy few weeks for Lerners bank I hope this summer, do the Browns need many players anyone know?

By AVFC48




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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday April 17 2007

Time: 5:08PM

Your Comments

Bouma is class and will go nowhere, the futures of Hughes, Bardsley, Delaney, and Samuel seem to be more pressing for me.
Stig
sorensen = not good enough. great shot stopper but makes the whole team nervous as he cant command his area, flaps many crosses, makes too many mistakes for a top team. i actually thought taylor played very well when he came in, just got unlucky with his injury.
Its All Over FC
look at the squad of players that are likely to be in the championship next season and see if a few bargins can be picked.Watford are down so any other quality players we could pinch? Bouazza maybe? if the hammers fall maybe lucas neil ,charlton we could try for bent sheff utd jagelka wigan have baines.I think there are a lot of players out there who would be willing to play for oneill and would be egar to play european football not nxt season obviously but hopefully the nxt.
sk1nner80
we are not going to get berbatov at whatever cost. as painful as it is we a re someway behind spurs at the moment
rotter82
Samuel, Hughes,Bardsley,Hendrie..possibly Laursen, Ridgewell on a season loan!Either way the maybe's are going and the whole club is setting it's sights and standards higher.A double deal for Sneijder and Huntelaar from Ajax for a start, maybe Joey Barton( I winced as I typed that, but the boy gets around!)Distin as a natural left sided Defender, maybe a deal for Woodgate if he is up for it and Olly at RB.Craig Gordon from hearts as GK and Iaquinta has been banded around Spurs looked at him before Berbatov.Either way we will need to move fast as once the standard is set it will go crazy.Plus no competitions this summer to distract!..can't wait!!!
OneloveVilla
Balance is the priority and the weakest link is the right side. Gabby isn't a winger, and as avfc48 states in his article, Hughes and Bardsley are not good enough. So do we go back in for Milner or SWP as well as shop for a right back? I'm not a fan of raiding relegated teams "best" players, and wasn't overly excited when O'Leary signed Sorensen and McCann - surely if they are good enough for the Premier side whose minimum requirement is to challenge for Europe every season, they wouldn't be in a side that that goes down! I think Matt Taylor at Pompey would be a good signing (better than Samuel). Milner (better than Gabby on the right).... speculation is rife, there will be money to spend and I feel what MO'N wants Randy will provide. I just hope that MO'N 1. has the pulling power and 2. has an extensive knowledge of European/world football so that we can sign the best players available.
bazzah
Riacrdo Quaresma of FC Porto would be a fantastic signing to play on the right wing and it would show Villa really mean business but he will be coverted by the big 4 in england and other top european clubs..! but my point is we should be trying to attract this sort of player now we have Mr Lerners backing not the ones that have just been relegated with their respective clubs..!
deemz
Bouma shouldn't be replaced i think he has shown his class this season. People seem to forget that he is a centre half - a position he has never played for us. We need a tough central midfield player though Barry has been excellent there in the last few games. A commanding centre half is needed, it's a shame Laursen can't string a decent run of games together because he is class. Sorensen is too hit and miss for my liking. Cudicini would be an excellent signing. I wpould like to see Foster but we would only get him on loan and that's not we require.
weller77
lee dixon made an intresting comment on motd2, he was talking about cech, but said something about when he used to play with seamen (trying to fight the impulse to make a joke here!) that the defenders never have to look behind them and can concentrate on playing forward. i think our defense would be 30% better if we had a decent, reliable keeper. i voted for green, i used to play in goal and believe me, he's class i'd also say tara to taylor and let olejnik be no.2. totally agree about the full backs, bouma is great, but needs to develop his game pre season. and bardsley is like barton, but without the ability and all of the thuggery. laursen, when fit is a human wall, and olof is miles better with him, but fitness is an issue. i'd look at woodgate or distin. centre mid, barton - o'neill would sort out his rage and we'd have a quality player on our hands. i'd like to also push that mean streak upfront to with the addition of alan smith, he's matured alot and still retains his passion. other than that i'd show the door to jlloyd, bardsley, sorensen and taylor. i was considering adding delaney, but he's good enough when he's fit.
bobbyfett
i didnt put hendrie as he's as good as gone. and who would really want to be associated with the kind of person who insults someone in a wheelchair.
bobbyfett
Hope all the talk turns to players and were not faffing round getting in "will do for now" type players. Step it up Randy & Martin and get going early. One match winner in would be great too.
iomvilla
MON is flying out personally to watch FC Zurich midfielder Xavier Margairaz. Saviola of Barca is available on a free as is Distin & Sidwell. He appears set on Bellamy because he enjoys pace. Methinks he will get because they liked each other from the Celtic days. With our pace teams will defend deep so we need a creative midfielder to unlock. If Maloney or Young play left wing perhaps Barry will play in the middle? Need a keeper (Boruc from Celtic will sign), right back & central defender. Anyone's guess who though as there have been no noises from MON to sign Bardsley. I expect 20-25 Mill to be spent in complementing the team we have with Hendrie the only other leaving. Laursen, Hughes, Berger & Devaney to stay.
Gazvilla
you see this is why they should allow genetic engineering. clone jimmy rimmer, paul mcgrath x3, tony morley, peter withe, david platt and paul merson. also vassell, then there would be another player around who's just as ***** !
bobbyfett
As good as Sorenson is, I have to agree a Jimmy Rimmer clone is as close too perfection as you could get. He totally commanded his area, was calmness personified, and he commanded the total confidence of his defence. The result was that shot-stopping was not needed as much - but he could do that too when he had to. Either of the Scots options should fit - contrary to the image north of the border, these are definitely not dodgy keepers.
stennyvilla
we definatley need more of a presence in midfield and at right back,and central defence.have a bad feeling that davis wil be going.
Pking
bobbyfett, Gazvilla, Stig, and others - why are you not posting on the forums? Do you know it exists? that's where all the action is. Why limit yourself only to the front page?
Saurat
I think Jimmy Rimmers clone is out of contract at the end of the season. Boom Boom will stay as he is quality. Davis should stay, as should Ridge and Cahill, who I think will or should be around for a long time. MON will sort it out but keep the jewels.
morky13villa
we must not get to carried away, players like Huntelaar, Snejder, Quaresme, Berbatov and maybe even Woodgate, are unrealistic signings, 3 of them can play champions league footall, Berbatov Uefa, and woodgate will problaly join a better side, we are nr. 10 in the premier league, played more games than the teams below us. The only chance we have to qualify to the uefa, is by Fairs play, and that is not very inveting. The only way we can build our team up, is buy buying players, that are good, but dont play for good teams, I mean players like Baines Darren bent, Lucas Neill, maybe even Sharp from S ****hurpe, who would be delighted do join us, and he has scored about 30 goals this season. if we want players like Huntelaar, Snejder, Quaresme, Berbatov and Woodgate, then we have to qualify for somthing, and not thruw Fairs play. Sorry if it is hard to read, I am not English. And as for selling, Hughes, Samuel, Delaney, Hendrie, Sørensen(but first we must find a replacemet), Ridgewell, McCann must all go.
Faroe_villa_rules
Right back, central defender, James Milner and a proven striker. We would then be capable of challenging for a European spot. Out the door following Juan Pablo, JLloyd, Hendrie, Bardsley, Hughes and Taylor. Step up The Beast, or bring in a back up keeper capable of pushing Tommy.
glensider
Matt Taylor - yes. Barton or Sidwell in midfield - yes. Defoe - yes. A winger - SWP or Milner - unsure. Scott Parker from a troubled Newcaste - yes.
koolbill
This is my wish-list for the summer and where I think our priorities should be; Sylvain Distin Jonathan Woodgate Scott Parker Steve Sidwell Shaun Wright-Phillips Darren Bent That would essentially form a new spine through the team and bring out the best in the better players we've already got. I haven't got better alternatives for goalkeeper or right back as of yet so I haven't included any names. These are the players that I'm confident would take us to the next level and aren't outside of our grasp with the right sell. I wouldn't expect to be able to get all of them realistically, but that's where my initial focus would be.
Alec
We need at least 5 world class players. Superstars not superkids, we need maturity and class.
leelindsay
Lots of points of view, most of them different. So here is mine. Sorenson has not cost us any points this season, but has saved us many (Watford away, Liverpool and West Ham at home immediately spring to mind. To buy any of the keepers mentioned(non of of who are proven to be beter than TS) will cost millions and would probably not be the best use of revenue (Green does not command his box and this Cudicini is a liability at crosses). We do need a new right back, but it would be great if Delaney was to get back to the player we know he can be. This is definitely not Mellberg who is next to useless when played as a full back. Bouma is doing OK at left back. Cover for him (not a replacement) is needed. This should be a youngster with potential who will relish the challenge. We have 3 reasonable centre backs and 1 quality one (Laursen when fit). Distin in would be a reasonable shout. None of the others to leave. On the right we have Ashley Young. He is not a striker nor a left sided player. I think we can assume that M'ON is not going to spend on SWP or Milner because this would puts Youngs position in jeopardy. We need extra quality in midfield but I am unsure of wether Barton is the answer. I do personally like Scott Parker. We are in need of another centre forward to compete with Carew. Again this should be a young and hungry player looking to make a name for himself when they get the opportunity. We need a 20 goal a season player. Hopefully Luke or Gabi can rise to the challenge. If we spend big on this type of player (Darren Bent) then it will almost certainly mean that Luke or Gabi not making it. We are also short of cover for Gareth on the left of midfield. Again I believe a player with the right attitude and the desire to make a name for himself when the opportunity arises is needed. M'ONs second season should be one of development not massive overhaul. At the end of next season he should finally know who needs to go and who needs to stay. This would then prepare us for an assault for the top end of the table. This is not going to happen next season where a challenge for a a European place is not an unreasonable expectation.
voiceoftheholte
Nobody's mentioned him so far, but doesn't anyone else rate Dean Ashton? I think the guy's awesome, and will definitely be up for grabs if the Hammers do face the drop. I seriously rate him as the nearest complete striker in the Alan Shearer mould. He's definitely the type of guy we should be looking at, and would most probably be cheaper than a lot of the alternatives. Don't think he's a long term crock, just picked up a nasty injury as he was getting going - think WHam would have been looking up the table rather than down in a relegation fight had he still been playing. Plus, he's already used to playing in (fake) claret and blue!!
YatesyVillain
 

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