Would You Give O'Neill Money?
As the furore dies down over MONs departure, and we stop pointing accusatory fingers at all sundry, now is the time to reflect on his time in charge. During his time at Villa he spent approximately 98million on transfer fees alone. What would that figure be once incentives, signing on fees, agent fees, bonuses etc. are added to the pile? And he only recouped approximately 30million.
For my money Randy Lerner has backed MON to the hilt. So why would he not continue to back him? We have made progress in the league and the cups. It is not until you look at where the money has gone and the players he bought that you start to realise just why Randy lost confidence in MON. Now the figures are as accurate as I could research, and I have discounted loans and free transfers (as both incoming and outgoing) but the list does make for interesting reading:
Stewart Downing (£12m, Middlesbrough)
Fabian Delph (8m, Leeds United)
Habib Beye (4m, Newcastle United)
Stephen Warnock (8m, Blackburn Rovers)
Emile Heskey (£3.5m, Wigan)
Curtis Davies (8m West Brom)
Steve Sidwell (£5m, Chelsea)
Bradley Friedel (2m, Blackburn)
Nicky Shorey (£3m, Reading)
Luke Young (£6m, Middlesbrough)
Carlos Cuéllar (£7.8m, Rangers)
James Milner (£12.5m, Newcastle)
Wayne Routledge (£1.5m, Tottenham)
Shaun Maloney (Celtic, £1m)
Ashley Young (Watford, £9.65m)
Stiliyan Petrov (7m Celtic)
Nicky Shorey (£3million, West Brom)
Craig Gardner (£3million, Birmingham City)
Gareth Barry (£12m, Manchester City)
Stuart Taylor (1.5, Manchester City)
Zatyiah Knight (3m, Bolton)
Luke Moore (£3m, West Brom)
Shaun Maloney (£2.5m, Celtic)
Gary Cahill (£5m, Bolton)
Peter Whittingham (Cardiff, £350,000)
Wayne Routledge (1m Crystal Palace)
How many of those players we have bought would get into the top four teams? In my opinion he has spent an awful lot of money on plays who never played regularly - Beye, NRC, Sidwell, Shorey, Maloney, Routledge, Davies, Delph. He has also sold some players who have gone on to greater things - Cahill and Whittingham. What would those two now fetch in the transfer market? He has also bought and sold at a loss - Maloney, Knight, Routledge,
I think MON biggest failing is his uncertainty in the transfer market. This was one big criticism levelled at him during his time at Celtic and I think we could say the same at Villa. All too often transfers were left until the last minute and looked like panic buys. MON left because his chairman no longer had confidence in him and refused to give him the funds. Ask yourself looking at the above list, would you have given him any more money?
Up The Villa.