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Would You Give O'Neill Money?

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)

Total: 98.95m

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.
Jamie Cash

Writer:Jamie Cash
Date:Tuesday August 10 2010
Time: 12:34PM


Agree he wasn't great in the transfer market 100% of the time but he had notable successes (Young, Milner, Dunne to name 3). I could point to about 25 failures to 35 successes Fergie has made at Manure during his tenure - not every time does it work even for the greatest managers. I think it's also worth noting that Benitez spent £230 mil during his 4/5 years at Liverpool and despite early success never won the PL title. 3 names (Keane, Pennant and Aquilani) deserve special mention for either being rubbish or displaying no form at Pool. Nearly 50mil on those 3 alone. Man City? Well they've spent (probably) over £500mil in the last few years (exceeding 07 - 60mil 08 - 150mil 09 - over 160 mil this season over 120mil so far). Not even a top four finish. How much has Spurs spent in the same period? These clubs are all chasing that fourth spot for the last few seasons. All in all the net spend of 80/90 mil over four years is, in relative terms, nothing. With what he has had MON overachieved - we're about to see this season just how much that overachievement was. I hope I'm wrong and we can bring in a manager with the right calibre who, like O'Neill, can make average players good and good players great as well as having transfer market nous but that's really asking a lot.
Elmo Grub
10/08/2010 14:36:00
To summarise MON... 1. Good but not great. 2. Not good value for money. 3. Difficult to work with. 4. Irrational & 5. Selfish (he knew what he was doing vis-a-vis timing his resignation).
10/08/2010 14:49:00
So thanks MON - but you are the real loser here, people will reflect on this and other similar impetuous actions and they will see you for the selfish man that you are.
10/08/2010 14:53:00
I think we all have to assume that money will be there for the new manager and the board just did not trust MON with any of it any longer after his handling of it over the last 4 years. As I mentioned previously which of his buys apart from Young, Milner & Dunne could we sell on at a profit or even get what we paid for them? I can't think of any. We are not a selling club and Milner is not purely being sold to raise finances, he is being sold because he wants to leave us and so we're screwing ManC for as much as possible, and the General says we are not looking to sell Ashley either. All in all I think we'll be a pretty attractive proposition for any manager, embedded in the top 6, European football, a lot of fringe players now hungry to play for a new manager and some money to spend and 3 weeks until the window closes in which to spend it.
10/08/2010 17:13:00
AvdomFc - no we're not! We're in the tom tit that MON left us in. We have to deal with it and move on. He was a good manager, not a great manager. We finished 6th 3 years in a row so that statistic doesn't show an improvement 'year on year' we also played some pretty average football last year especially at VP. Don't get me wrong this isn't ideal so close to the new season but I don't think MON going means we are 'F*cked' - as you put it.
10/08/2010 17:16:00
Hope you're right Jaytee
10/08/2010 17:17:00
Yes, statistics can be interpreted in many ways, but I'm not talking about stats - I'm talking about trying to establish an objective view of us and the other teams around us. To me, this article only tells a part of the story - to compare what O'Neill has achieved (or not) in his time requires not just an analysis of his net spend, but also the same measure of what our rivals have spent, PLUS a look at squad depth and quality at the start of whatever time period you care to examine. If we're going to hammer somebody, let's not do a Sunday papers job on them, let's try to be accurate.
10/08/2010 23:28:00
"just wish Atkinson had that sort of cash when he was here!!.." - so do I, but it was a different time and a different world.
11/08/2010 16:04:00
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