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Villa Boss - CSKA Result In Lap Of The Gods

Holte End hero and former Villa midfielder Ian Taylor has joined in the argument over the under strength team to be fielded tonight in the UEFA Cup game v CSKA Moscow.

He seems to share the disappointment of many fans who he says have been 'bitterly disappointed' saying in the Express & Star 'I can understand two or three big names being left behind but not eight or nine. It’s just waving the white flag.'

He also says that having worked so hard to get to this stage it seems a 'real shame' especially as he could see Villa with a full strength team having a good chance to progress.

Taylor concedes the squad size is biting, 'It just isn’t big enough to handle these games.'

On a positive note he does champion the young prospects like Barry Bannan, Shane Lowry and Marc Albrighton 'I’ve long been calling for them to get a chance. This could be their opportunity and they will need to take it.'

There is an article in The Mirror by James Nursery today with a quote from Vital Villa's very own Jonathan Fear + H&V's Dave Woodhall and Vital Villa member Lee Lyndsey. I said: 'It is frustrating after all the passion and hope Villa fans have invested in the fact we are back in Europe.Some of the older fans like myself remember football always used to be about winning silverware. All the club's focus seems to be on the Champions League now. I think the best way to gain experience for hopefully the Champions League next season would be to do well in Europe this season.'

Thing is, no matter what we all think, only one man's opinion really counts. The man of the moment, Martin O'Neill has again talked about the team and reminded fans that we've not lost the game yet!

He says he knows that around 300 of the Villa fainthful have travelled and would like to take the time to see what they think after they'd spent their money. He says the criticism of him for the under strength side is going on for ages and the attitude appears to be that resting players is 'sacrilegious' even though other clubs do it. Thing is though, not sure other clubs in an important game like this rest 8 of them, just a few?

'For me, this competition is important. Perhaps if we were further down the line, if this was a quarter-final here tomorrow, it might be a different issue. But who is to say the players in the side tomorrow won't be able to turn this around? We have a real fighting chance of doing it and that would be fantastic for us. That would maybe placate those travelling fans.'

Sounds like he has agonised over what is the best thing for Villa, 'Whether in time it proves to be correct is in the lap of the gods.' He also says for him getting into the Champions League isn't about the cash, it is for the kudos.

Interestingly he admits he isn't totally sure he's done the right thing but it was his decision and that is that.

'The irony is we spent all of last season trying our hardest to qualify for this UEFA Cup. Yes, I will be upset if we lose because we came into this in the Intertoto Cup in July, so it is important to us. But I've made a decision and I stand by it. Am I comfortable with it? I'm not sure you're ever comfortable. With hindsight will I change things? Who knows, but I've done it now - it's my decision and no-one else's.'


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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday February 26 2009

Time: 10:47AM

Your Comments

The kids could make themselves instant heroes tonight!
The Fear
We've done enough moaning, now's the time to get behind them. I just hope he does play the kids instead of obvious failures such as Salifou and Osbourne, could do them the world of good. Anyone know if the game is going to be on the radio?
pjvilla - spot on. I honestly don't see any point in *****ing and moaning about it, we're meant to be Villa supporters, not critics. As MON has said, if we were floundering lower in the league, the UEFA cup would definitely be a bigger target to aim at, but we're not, we're pushing on beyond all expectation in the league. This also answers those who argue how we strived to get into the competition in the first place - at that time NOBODY could have forseen at this stage of the season we'd be in 4th place and looking solid. As much as I sympathise with those who've shelled out to go to Moscow, we just need to get behind the team - we support Aston Villa, not specific individuals.
pjvilla. Radio WM have it, not sure about capital gold/brmb.
The Fear
just footie talk mancuni-villa, come the game everyone will be 100% behind the team. As above, the kids could be heroes tonight as could JC if he wakes up and takes the leader role he should.
The Fear
I know its all opinion and banter, but its the slating of MON that gets me. As someone said on another site, it just consolidates the widely held view of Aston Villa - great, prestigious club, moaning whining fans.
I'm with you on that Pj, I think if we start the kids we'll not only give them their much needed experience but we might actually win the game. Maybe a little naivety is what we need here. It will certainly be better than some of the performances salifou and Ozzy ahve put in when playing together. They had absolutely no fight in them against Zilina. Bannan to start, lets do this propperr
Be brilliant to win tonight, plus see a star performance from one of the kids that propels him into the first team squad. Might just be the tonic a few tired players need is to see there position under threat. On the subject of MON, how can anyone critisise him, we are 4th.....4TH
Salifou's and possibly Osbourne's last games in a Villa shirt if we lose so they have got a hell of a lot to play for.
Thanks Fear, had a horrible feeling i'd be listening to Jack Woodwood or whatever his name is. I'm starting to get a strange feeling we could go and win this one tonight. In MON we trust!!!
mancuni-villa, Villa fans are no different to any other fans up and down the land who love their team and devote all their energies and emotions into their club. Just because that **** DOL said we were fickle doesn't mean sane and good Villa fans have to believe him or that it is just Villa. All fans discuss the good the bad and the ugly and still support their team 100%. I have seen very little slagging off of O'Neill, just some questions and opinions on what he does... most agree only his opinion ultimately matter but that doesn't mean we can't pass the time of day talking about all angles, not just the great stuff but also things that we don't necessarily agree with.

I'll never accept or listen to digs at our fans, no way are we a moaning whining bunch, the Claret and Blue army are true and loyal to the mighty club.
The Fear
Perish the thought PJ! lol. Funny how when a game gets closer the excitement and optimism start to flow isn't it? COME ON VILLA!
The Fear
I feel let down by the no show from Carew. As I think someone else has said, perversely I hope it is a genuine injury. He looked so up for it on the news lsat night when interviewd at Bham International.
Adam Deuce

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