Date:Friday April 24 2009
Why should we as Aston Villa fans be happy with mid table mediocrity?
I regularly read fans telling me that we cannot compete with the top 4 because of this excuse and that excuse.
In 1980 I doubt there were many fans, pundits, analysts who said that Aston Villa would beat the likes of Arsenal, Man Utd, Leeds or Liverpool to the title , but we did.
Now we have a far more exciting club,a club owned and run by what looks to me to be the perfect owner in Randy Lerner. No longer do we have the worry that every quality player we bring through will be transferred to pay for any new players required to take us on.
Yes the top 4 clubs have lived at the top for longer, have grossed millions from their European achievements, their increased capacity grounds and so on, but so what.
In the 3 seasons Randy has been in charge he's encouraged an increase in attendances, we have gained some stability and are almost assured of Premiership survival if nothing else.
Ron Saunders had won a Div 2 promotion, we had some glorious times in the League cup, who can forget the 3 way Everton final but his main push was in the league.
Yes it took him time, it took him several years of carefully and extremely clever transfers, selling players like Gray, Gidman to buy players more suited to his style of team. He didn't have in relative terms the money available today at Villa Park, but he bought players who played, players who replaced existing team mates because they were better. He improved, sometimes only slightly, but he improved each position slowly and carefully, not for him big wedges of money for bench warmers. Yes he sometimes played players out of position, Kenny Swain was never a full back, until Saunders put him there, but against the best he never looked out of place, he did a superb job, but usually each player brought in improved the teams quality.
He learnt quickly, he rarely used his mouth in the press to say much, he rarely smiled, he did his job.
Aston Villa have not always been the also rans, we have, topped the rest in the UK, we even topped the best in Europe, few UK clubs have. So why settle for mid table mediocrity fellow fans, why be happy finishing sixth, seventh, even fifth, why? Why be so complacent, we have a great owner, we have the ambition at the top, so why not. Yes the top 4 have the better base of years of European football, but they aren't perfect, each one has its financial queries, its own restrictions, so why not Aston Villa, other clubs will take the bit and maybe get it right, Man City, Spurs, even Everton if they find an owner with cash.
No, for me we have nearly everything, a great fan base, a great owner, a squad capable of some good football. All we need is to believe we can
Oh and find a decent manager like Ron Saunders to bring it about
Date:Friday April 24 2009
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