The Villa Times - 14/06/07
Unoial Villa News...
All is fairly quiet on the Villa front.
We have the new fixtures and face Liverpool on the first day: Click Here
Then we have Gareth Barry reacting on the official site saying: 'It's a really exciting opening fixture and I'm sure the fans will be really up for it - so will the players. We had a terrific atmosphere for the final home game of last season (Sheff Utd) and hopefully we can see a lot more of that next season. Our results against the bigger teams haven't been too good in recent seasons, but we drew at home to Liverpool and Chelsea last season, so that's a start. If we could start with three points against one of the top sides in Europe that would be a massive early season boost for everyone at the club.'
The Birmingham Mail claim that Martin O'Neill is once again looking at Manchester United striker Alan Smith after being alerted to the fact the Old Trafford club aren't offering him a new deal. Vital Villa covered this last month with the England striker apparently willing to see out the remaining two years of his contract in a bid to fight for his place. However after comments by Alan Smith The Mail say 26-year-old would be interested in Villa if United decide to sell him. With Louis Saha out until January with an injury, it seems unlikely they will look to offload him though surely? As always, the likes of Everton, Tottenham and Newcastle are also linked. Full article: Click Here
Vital Villa asked, in a poll suggested by voiceoftheholte, Why don't you have a season ticket at Villa? 27% did have one! 23% live abroad and 16% voted cost. 13% voted 'other' and 8% had work commitments. 6% pointed to the kick off times and schedules and 4% simply couldn't be bothered!! 2% wanted to see the Villa do better first and 1% who didn't attend due to disability or health issues.
A post on our forum by Neil11 which I thought was nice and positive - albeit optimistic for next season - 'Listening to Talk sport yesterday afternoon, (Adrian Durham and Ian Wright), Adrian Durham said that he thought Arsenal may drop out of the top 4 this season. When a caller asked who he thought would replace them he immediately said Villa. He went on to add that either Spurs or Newcastle could challenge for the place but Villa were favourites. And he is a Spurs fan! I know impressing a talk sport presenter is not our main aim, but its nice to be talked about in this bracket, especially by a station that is usually so London biased.'
The Birmingham Mail have linked us to Feyenoord's 20-year-old 'rising star' Royston Drenthe. The attacking left-back can be seen at the Under-21's European Championship playing for Holland at the moment.
Lively Villa v Spurs article: Click Here
Sure to be as lively Villa v Celtic article: Click Here
State of Midlands football as featured in the Express and Star by FFC. Part One and Part Two
Head of Villa Communications, Phil Mepham, says Villa would like to bring in new players before the team returns early July but adds there will be no panic buys. And on the supposed Nigel Reo-Coker bid, Mepham has agreed with West Ham boss Alan Curbishley saying there has been no bid to date adding 'If there was ever any credence to the Reo-Coker reports that Villa wanted to sign him, then that would not happen anyway while he is away with the under-21s.' Full article: Click Here
Season ticket sales are up 225% on this time last year and season tickets in the North Stand are on offer for £200 (£50 for under 16's) as away fans will be in the Witton upper and lower.
Aston Villa CEO Richard FitzGerald says Villa still have a long way to go. The chief executive, who has been at the second Dubai International Sports Conference (lucky sod!) said: 'We had a laid out a plan up to five years where we want to be competing at the highest level. There's a lot to be done. Slowly we are getting everything done, but I say slowly because there is just so much still to do.' Full article: On the right road, but not there yet
Mark Delaney is close to a return but not a return to contract talks! The Welsh right-back is stepping up his training at Bodymoor Heath and aiming to be able to train with a ball in the not to distant future. He said: 'I'm going in three times a week and I'm continuing my strengthening programme jogging in the swimming pool. Things are going well and I'm approaching the date when I can start running again, which is the middle of the month. So the timescale is getting shorter so I can see a bit of light at the end of the tunnel now. I've spoken to the physios in the United States and they have told me that there might be some swelling around the knee. But touch wood, there hasn't been any yet, so that's good news.' Full article: Mark Delaney Stepping Up Fitness
Thought for the day: 'If Jesus saves sinners, does he redeem them for cash and prizes?'