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A Repost To Randy Lerner/Paul Faulkner Criticism

A Repost To Randy Lerner/Paul Faulkner Criticism

OK, I'm a fan of the board. I have made no secret of that. I think I should hold my hands up, I know them slightly. I have spoken with the owner a few times, I'm not on his Christmas card list and I haven't been 'bought out' as some would suggest - my bank balance isn't happy enough for me to be a sell out! I also do know the CEO Paul Faulkner. I've spoken with these folks every now and then since the takeover happened. In the early days as it was happening, I had several meetings AT Villa WITH the knowledge of the previous regime with some of the advisors to Randy. I also did that Villa Forward consultation thing which was referenced at times by them (just compiling all of our collective gripes over the years and with the previous regime). All unpaid stuff, never wanted anything, never asked for anything, wouldn't have taken anything. Oh, I had a free steak and chips with the former CEO Richard FitzGerald once and did get a free beer via the 3 second pump the other week via another Villa manager. So ok, I am on the take.

Probably also good to point out I also knew the previous directors Steve Stride and Mark Ansell. Now fair enough, our swords crossed as this was during the 'Ellis out' years but we are still on speaking terms and they both are Villa communication wasn't just with this current board.

Ramble perhaps but important background, especially for those few who like to spread vindictive and untrue rumours about me (although the one about an apple and a pink dress might well be correct). I'm not anyone's spokesman, I'm not on anyone's pay cheque, but I've looked these people in the eyes and I trust them. I trust they want the best for Villa, that they are doing all they can for Villa and that they respect this club.

I could be wrong, they could be wrong, nothing in life and especially in this mad industry of football is for sure is it? However their intentions are - as far as I'm concerned - nothing but good.

Not heard any players talk about their anger at the departure ... the walkout ... of our previous manager though, does that not speak for itself?

So, I'm a fan of the board, more so than I was of the manager although when he said he was staying, I was more than happy (as an individual and fan) as he'd earnt the right with the points haul last season and cup runs... albeit I wasn't bothered if he went... what I didn't at any time want was him sacked and that hasn't happened.... however the main thing I'm a fan of is Aston Villa.

So that leads us on to this thread: Lerner - forget the penny pinching and step up.

Every fan is entitled to their opinion, I respect that even if I don't agree and I can now see how some felt against us Ellis out lot, those that supported him and hated us...!

For me, I just can't see where the board of Villa have gone wrong to get some moaning. YES I understand the frustrations, the manager situation etc but as many will know, my finger of blame points (middle finger actually) to one man and he isn't on the board.

Now I wasn't going to publish this thread of my post as below but Vital member (who keeps me on my toes as he so often disagrees with me... which is a good thing!) Simonbigron said:

Dude - this should be front page. I disagree with a lot of what you say but it makes interesting reading and I think coming from you would help focus some of the issues. We debated before - we know so little about Why O'Neill left partly because neither party has come out and said ANYTHING about what happened which makes both parties equally culpable. Lerner has said nothing and we have to get information from between the lines. I understand your frustration and I certainly don't want Lerner out, he has been great for us... but this blind support of Lerner is bit strong for my tastes.

So... here goes..... Oh and I don't think I have blind faith, I think my eyes are open but I do look for the good - even in the previous regime - before trying to look for the bad and I seldom buy conspiracy theories (ie that we won't appoint a manager until after the transfer window so no money has to be spent... don't buy it, getting in the right manager is the key and the timing is just awful to do that).

Anyway, tidied up for the front page language wise!

Just embarrassed by the above. Totally and utterly gobsmacked in fact.

Who gave MON all the money?
Who gave MON all the autonomy?
Who backed MON even after he threw a game in Moscow?
Who backed MON no matter what rubbish he bought? (£10m and £12m for two defenders who aren't worth jack ****?)
Who paid a fortune for Marlon Harewood on the managers request (a player that almost to a man we all knew wasn't good enough) only to see the player sit on the bench and then in the stands and go on a free?
Who paid for Heskey ... a striker who doesn't score... at the managers request?
Who backed MON for buying expensive players and putting them on the bench and still allowed MON to buy more?
Who has transformed Villa Park?
Who has tried to restore some pride for fans?
Who has put a proper business plan in place to help bring Villa back up from the financial shambles?
Some use the Holte Pub as a stick to beat them with, who left it to rot... the first thing you see as you walk to Villa Park a ruined building ... great... lets have that back please
Who has put faith in great staff at Villa and backed them?
Who has tried to get us on a better business footing, including the ... shock horror ... improved facilities?
Who has spent millions on Bodymoor Heath.. a world class training facility (and no, Doug did not start it, the plans were radically changed, the project had been mothballed, Doug had said the money was ring fenced the one AGM, next AGM all was very quiet and the cupboard was empty... Bodymoor was like much of Villa, an embarrassment)
Who backed the manager to bring in average coaches to play five aside with the players who were bored stiff?

A good few of the fans I think have fallen for the 'selling club' rubbish. There was money there, it had to be balanced though. We moan if there is a debt, we then moan if we don't pay players massive wages and we then moan when we don't spend millions upon millions on more players whilst we have nearly £280 000 (ish) A WEEK of wages on the bench. We then slate the business plan to try to keep us on an even keel. What do we want? The press line is just wrong. All clubs sell players who want out and all clubs have a value on a player ... Man Utd - Ronaldo - simple example.

I could go on....

What would you people have happen then?

Should Doug still be in? Sorry, he has gone, he had to go, he was too old, get over it, it is just a matter of fact he had to go.


To my knowledge there have been no bids since either.

Does anyone know a billionaire oil sheik or the like? If so, let me know, I'll put him in touch.

The talk about Randy as a problem here or as if they aren't looking at trying to repair the mess left by that ***** ***** MON leaving FIVE DAYS before the f****** season started just makes my blood boil

Lets have a proper list of all the things he has done wrong. We moan when we see a debt on the club (most of which would never be called in) then we moan when he doesn't spend quadzillions on players.... he's spent enough to expect better by the way.

Should he just magic out of thin air a manager? Should he rush the appointment like our old mate Doug did ?

I'm gutted for him to be honest, I think he - like us fans - deserve better and certainly deserved better than what MON did.

And the money was there... MON knew the dressing room wasn't fully behind him and I don't think ever particularly settled and liked Villa. He never seemed happy, he moaned a good few times about us the fans and that was to the press who took great pleasure in hanging us out to dry.... were the isolated boos really that bad for the manager to moan about ALL of us... which is how it got reported.

What is the solution? Randy out... ok? And then....?

We have a good man in charge, he put too much faith in a manager that I think hoodwinked most of us. When he first came it was so exciting he was like the second coming. Well, he isn't walking on water, he's just walked off.

I'm sure MON wanted the best for us and himself but it went stale, he looked an unhappy man for much of last season and was reacting to fans a bit too often - much like DOL (booo!) before him. Talk of splits in the dressing room were becoming more frequent - (again, much like the DOL days)

As said, my blood is boiling here... I have talked to a good few off the forum who like me just can't see where Randy has gone wrong apart from maybe putting too much faith in the manager?

I also have great contacts at the club, not one has moaned to me about how they are treated, what is going on, how the club is run etc. Before - and others will know this - it was a total slag fest, total depression, by the end the club was on its knees. UPDATE. Not speaking for all staff current or otherwise. My contacts including managers of departments etc are talking a totally different game these days. Naturally there are some, a couple who have departed, who speak differently. As said, wasn't speaking for every member of staff here, just my experience of those I talk to (which is a good varied amount including some who have been there 15 years and more!)

For goodness sake, wake up.

We have got a good owner. He was never Abramovich, he isn't a multi billionaire like that Man City guy who has only seen 'his' team play once, but he is a good guy, trying to do right by Villa. It was clear from the start there would be money, it was also stated very clearly it wasn't going to be a Chelsea style revolution. If anyone else with more money was about, they didn't bid. That is the bottom line.

Mr Aston Villa before him made a bomb out of Villa, I fail to see how Randy would ever get his investment back if he tried to sell us.

The man some worship is to blame for leaving us in the sh** in my ever so humble opinion. He could have walked in May with the thanks of most and his head held high. He could have just as easily have stayed this season with the majority backing of the club and fans. What he did was leave at the sort of time that made it impossible to plan who to replace him AND at a time when they should have been bringing in players.

Last night felt like the very sad end of the 'dream' we all had when Randy and MON were first together. At that time everything seemed possible, we then got that window of opportunity, 3rd, not far off 2nd and above Arsenal. The usual February drop off ruined it and there ended the dream perhaps, it is just the hangover took another season and a half to end in MON's departure and that at the very very very worst possible time for this fine club.

Here endeth the rant... flame suit on, fire away!

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:J P Fear
Date:Friday August 27 2010
Time: 3:59PM


Well said JF. Im in full support of Randy, if have him running our beloved club 10 times over than Doug Ellis. Although credit to Doug for hanging in there for the right buyer. I wrote on IC Bham earlier in response to a "Randy Out" thread that the kid didnt understand football and I'm ashamed to share him as a Villa Fan. Everyone makes mistakes and people should be given the opportunity to rectify. What Randy needs to do now - is get an appointment in and fast. Forget MacDonald. It's not going to happen. We need and Randy needs to get a proven big name manager in who's capable of attracting good players. We also need to see some spending. We desperately need a striker and a new left back to cover Warnock as I dont want to see Beye in that position and ideally Cueller not in the right back position either! Bouma/Shorey have left - we need a left back and a striker as a priority - but bought buy a new manager with pressure growing as there's 6 days left in the transfer window! NOW NOW NOW Please!
27/08/2010 16:14:00
excellent article, with good back up to support your points. Agree we need manager prepare yourself for the backlash from the usual suspects!!
27/08/2010 16:22:00
Agree with everything you have said, i cant believe any one would critisize the Board, they have been great for Villa, MON though to be honest i never liked, couldnt understand what all the fuss was about, bloody git leaving just before the season started :(
27/08/2010 16:24:00
A good read, and i agree with the majority of it - Lerner has backed the club, and there were wasteful signings, but at the same time, there were also inspired signings (milner, young), and all clubs make bad buys from time to time. Just hope that we collectively move forward in the right direction now... there's certainly money in the pot now we have bouma/MON/shorey/Milner off the wages, and also Milners transfer funds. I also do hope KMAC gets his chance. Agree Fear though mate, anyone who slags off Lerner for not putting 'cash' into the pot must be blind!!
27/08/2010 16:32:00
great article, totally agree. The board have done nothing but good since Lerner bought the club
27/08/2010 16:35:00
Agree 100% JF - however, I some how knew some fans would blame the board. They (the board) can not do enough for some. They are like kids in a sweet shop - wanting everything now.
27/08/2010 16:38:00
Id like to think they are doing there best to get a manager in fast but if there waiting around then they need to pull there fingers out, we need a manager now and get players in now. KMac isnt helping the situation all i hear him sayin is he doesnt no if he wants the job and just talkin about the situation it would put him in, Just shut up man! You either do or dont want it stop messin the *****in club about and ***** off to reserves. I really hope they arnt waiting to see the everton result as it would be too late for transfers and then what manager would want to come to our team not being able to do any buisness and having a weak sqaud.
27/08/2010 16:41:00
What a load of crap..........I jest JF you know my feelings on it mate. It is a very frustrating time at the minute made all the more difficult to stomach when results are going against us but I think the end is nearly upon us when we can at least look at a new manager and have a bit of hope that things might just pick up. To blame the board though is shocking really. If there were 3 or 4 obvious candidates out there I would question why it has taken so long but we have all racked our brains enough over the last 3 weeks and not one of us have come up with a list of managers that you could realistically say would be available, willing to come or improve us and move us on without an elemant of risk attached to his appointment. For the board therefore it is even more frustrating as I am sure they do not wish to see us continually getting beaten week after week in the embarrassing fashion we appear to be at the minute. I sense it will get a slight bit worse on Sunday and maybe a short while after that (Stoke away for your first game!??) but soon we will see a change in fortunes and a little bit of a better atmosphere at VP than was witnessed last night.
27/08/2010 16:45:00
selling club rubbish,we sell our best players,thats a fact.
27/08/2010 16:45:00
Agree with what is said. I think the problem with the current setup ( though am sure some wouldn't see it as a problem ) is that we, the fans never know what's going on. I admire the quality and professionalism but as nothing gets put out to the fans it leads to what is happening now. We have no idea what the hell is going on. The result to this escalates in frustration. Many have said "what's it got to do with anyone what the club do?" but for us, the fans, Villa is a way of life. It's our club. We may not own it and are at the end of the day mere customers to the club, but as many have already said, I will still be here supporting the club long after the current owners/board have long gone. I don't expect to be told everything that is going on but merely anything at all could go a long way to alleviate many fans fears for the coming season.
27/08/2010 16:51:00
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