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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Houllier 'Villa Is A Club Eager To Win Things'

Villa boss has told The Daily Mail that things feel right at Villa and the 'chemistry` brought him back to the Premier League.

"I could feel the chemistry at Villa, with Paul (Faulkner, Villa`s CEO) and the chairman. He is a good person. It is true what Sir Alex says: pick a chairman, not a club. He lives for the club."

Adding, 'I like the fans, the history. It is a club eager to win things. It is a club making changes and deciding on a different way of thinking, who are giving me the freedom to establish something.

'I knew they had some good young players and I have a chance to instil a culture, to say, "This is how we play, this is what we want to achieve".`

Another interesting snippet, 'I believe at top level there are three Ps passion, performance and progress. We are not at the level of the top four yet. We need consistency. We jumped on a moving train. It took three years at a club with a lot of history in Liverpool to take a step up. In football you cannot programme success, you can just prepare and plan. But Champions League is the aim.`

He also admits that 'one or two` will arrive in January but he expects the major changes to happen during the summer.

Some are arguing about the last statement though, 'I always play with two strikers, play to win. You have a responsibility to play winning football in an entertaining style.`

I do think he has tried to get the football more attacking and there is more passing (I know some disagree!) and that it will take a while for the culture of the footballing style to work through but I`m, not sure he can claim he always plays with two striker, it was the one up front that did many a head in during the Blues loss the other night.

Still, good positive words from Houllier and I for one would love to see him do well here and to take us a step closer to the success us Villa fans so rightly crave!




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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday December 5 2010

Time: 11:20AM

Your Comments

Whilst I agree that GH needs more time, I do think that the results put KMac's time in charge in a different perspective. After all, it was he that introduced many of the youngsters to senior level football. And look how many games it took for the moaners to have a go at him!
Winsforvilla
Chocolate - Chelsea have floundered without Terry and Lampard. We have actually performed better than them over the past 6 games and they haven't faced a top 7 side. We are missing virtually our entire midfield and we have barely had an occasion where two of our senior strikers have been fit. And yet we have scored MORE points over the last 6 games. They lose 2 players from their senior squad and their team falls apart. When we went out against United our midfield averaged less than 2 caps each! We have a defender playing in the midfield because we have no one else available... Maybe consider that there are teams below us with worse form than us. Do you think any of those teams are less injury ravaged as us? In fact is any other team in the league missing as many players? Do you really think any other team could handle losing basically their entire midfield and strike force and STILL not be in the bottom 4 on form? Maybe you should wake up to the fact that we are performing pretty damn well considering the position we are in. When the players start coming back and our form continues to dip, then I will be worried. But right now I am proud of our team, for all the adversity we have faced this season we are still somehow above the relegation zone. I doubt few other teams in the league could say that if they lost 6-8 of their starting 11!
Astriel
he likes two strikers.....lets have a go with gabby and the fonz tomorrow....and let downing operate down the left in the same way he did at boro and got himself into the england team... despite the results not being in our favour..we are more exciting to watch and we seem to pass the ball better.....its the last 3rd where we're not finishing and our back four have not been at their best at all...... time....will...tell...
reza
how can we be more exciting now than 2 years ago when away from home we played fast attacking football on the break. the football mow might have more passes but no end product. and once and for all can GH stop talking about liverpool and how much he loves them and the fans love him. start trying to please us because time is running out fast
madforit
Certainly think we are progressing and our football style is better. Bringing in the likes of Owen, Carrick, Keane I think would poor signings, need an established forward and midfield player in there mid 20's and continue playing the youngsters. The Fonz should be coming on more and more and I'd be pairing him with Gabby at home.
Eddy1
madforit i take it you never watched a game under o'neil then? Considering all we did was hoof, hoof, hoof, hoof all game and when we went 1-0 up just put 11 men behind the ball and continue hoofing. Our play now is much better, the only people who say it isnt are the people who refuse to back houllier and will say and do anything to get him out.
P.Avfc
p.avfc i watched every game home, away and europe under MON and we were exciting, so i don't know what you have been watching.GH even with all of the players fit will not finish in the top 10 because he is past it and was hardly in demand until we came along. I didn't see his name back on Liverpools list when they were looking for a manager. Yes MON left at an inopportune time but GH needs to stop talking and start winning.
madforit
Don't you read what I say? 'It isn't the performance on the pitch that worries me'. You cannot say that we are making progress this year. Blatantly, for whatever reason, we are not. Playing one up front and then claiming to always play two. These are the views of people who are not seeing what's in front of them. If GH said, 'We are not making the progress I would like because .....' that would be acceptable. If he said, 'I like to play two up front but it hasn't been possible.' that would be OK. But to claim we are making progress and that he always plays two up is simply to fly in the face of reality.
chocolate teapot
Madforit....you obviously didn't then in the final 18 months. Or did you just believe the media hype that we were a fast, young, counter attacking team. Truth was we were a 10 behind the ball, park the bus, take an occasional chance upfront job. If you can't see we are playing better football now (albeit the results are crap) then I find that frightening.

Mt Teapot...Houllier never claimed we 'always played' two upfront. He commented that was how he'd like to play and how he'd always play given the chance or are you incapable of reading between the lines or judging media reports for what they are?, Ergo are you forgetting the simple fact of injuries here. Or the ranting fans had when he played Ash and Ireland upfront and so on. Is it truly a case of arguing because it makes you feel better irrespective of the truth.

Oz I'll leave you to it....You're ex Arsenal has been happens to be a truly experienced, gifted world cup winner who may well have a rather good effect on our younger lads.

But it has to be black and white doesn't it...bring back Chris Sutton, Didier Agathe, Zat Knight. Let's ignore it took Petrov 3 years to find some form, where's that genius Maloney gone.....add your own.

I despair sometimes I really do. Not a single proper criticism that would be grounded in fact, just simple tabloid reactionism where anger is written for you in nice easy hooklines. Pathetic.
mike_field
easy madforit... albrighton has clearly marked his name on the first team... there's one kid. Clarke scored a brace where our strikers are yet hit the sheet (except gabby) there's two. bannan and hogg are playing better football than petrov has for some time. i think that's a grand total of... 4! lets not forget delph, who got starts under MON mind you... and that was near mission impossible so when he comes back thats another one... that makes 5. that's half the side leave our the goalie. GH might have to pick the kids now but when the seniors are fit i daresay it'll be a case of want to play the kids. oh and i forgot delfouneso. who i 'll happily admit is probably getting a bit of a raw deal coz he's a gun for the reserves and should get a couple games starts to prove himself. thats 6.
Zarch
btw are defense has been a product of our "experienced" back four. except newcastle which was clarkes first game i think. why are the kids even being targeted anyway? Anyone here suggesting that our experienced players are performing over the kids are mad.
Zarch
Mike - I am only quoting from the article above. 'I always play with two strikers.' I don't do 'reading between the lines'. I just look at what was said. Once again, if you read what I wrote I say, 'If he said, "I like to play two up front but it hasn't been possible."' that would be OK. What worries me is not the results (bad as they are) or the type of football but the apparent failure of GH and GM to see what is in front of them. We do not play with two strikers. There has not been progress. If they were to admit that I'd be a lot happier. I have seen too many managers maintain that there is nothing wrong as we slid into a relegation dogfight.
chocolate teapot
Ash is a forward by trade... I'm sure of it. MON picked him up and he started as a forward but MON put on the wing then the magic began. i reckon houllier considers ash a forward and not a midfielder.
Zarch
FFS, some people are blind, deluded, pigheaded, or just hated MON so much that they are only seeing the positives of having a new manager whoever it may be. We DO play more attractive football BUT this isn't the Spanish or Italian league and it won't work. We can pass the ball around all day between our defenders but it won't score us any goals. Under Houllier there is NO end product and he should be playing to the strengths of our team even though he obviously got lumbered with them. MON may not have played the prettiest football but he got the job done most of the time which was basically scoring more goals than the opposition. This season, only 6 teams have conceded more goals than us and and only 3 teams have scored fewer. Oh, it's probably worth adding for all the MON haters that we ponce about with the ball around the halfway line more than everyone else in the whole league and the passing looks good (main reason that Cuellar isn't playing when he should and would if he could pass!!)
Villan444
Seems like some people are purely results driven. If we aren't winning we are obviously a worse team and the coach must be fired. The mentality seems to be if we are not sitting 6th then obviously our team is worse and we should all dispair! But that is incredibly short sighted! Everyone who believes that Pires is an awful signing should actually think before they comment again! Bannan has less than 10 caps, clark has less than 10 caps, Hogg has less than 5. Albrighton has barely more than 10 caps. This has been the heart of our midfield - together they hold less caps than Pires has earned in 1 season! Do you know what experience and knowledge he can pass on to these kids? But he HAD a great career so since he had a bad game against Arsenal he obviously can't play football anymore... Maybe give the guy a chance? Maybe give GH some credit for bringing in a player who adds value to our team even though he hasn't seen a transfer market yet! But hey we are sitting 16th so obviously Pires is a poor signing... Kick him out - no value obviously! Maybe kick out the youngsters too - Chelsea have been green with envy that our youngsters have been performing far better than their expensively assembled youth team. Man United were shocked by how our teenages dominated their world class internationals. But we are sitting 16th so obviously our youngsters are CRAP - sell them off like MON has with Gardner, Ridgewell and Cahill. Don't need them. Go back to playing hoofball with 10 men behind the ball. Get dominated for 89 minutes and steal the winner. Fans love watching that brand of football! Only thing I am confused about is that MON bought all of these players and managed to come 6th. Then half of those players are out injured and we are still expected to be sitting 6th. So if we ran out without any of regular first 11 would the target still be 6th? If our top 22 players are out - is the target still 6th? Should we be winning every match? As I pointed out before, Chelsea are missing 2 players from their first 11. They can't win a game at the moment. We have been crippled by injuries but its completely unacceptable that we have played as well as most of our opposition and we aren't even in the bottom 4 on current form! Some people need to get some perspective - WE cannot expect to be 6th on the log after selling our best player or hiring a new coach mid season because some tosser quit just before the season started or half our team is out injured! So kick out GH - we are sitting 16th on the log. Unacceptable. Don't need his more intelligent and entertaining football. Don't need his failed signings. Don't care that he has to play uncapped teenagers against United. We aren't winning so OBVIOUSLY that is all there is to it.
Astriel
Wow Astriel that was saying something!!! - I agree with it but boy that is saying something! Watch out now for the retort by the "impatient" few.
nazvfc
Injuries are almost all down to the new fitness regime where players are obviously pushing themselves too hard (at the management's request.) The management has to be commended for bringing on the youth BUT was this not KMac who started this? and is this situation not forced upon us by Lerner's annoyance with some of MON's VERY average buys and reluctance to waste anymore. By the way, all of the youngsters that have come through have looked every bit as good as our much revered currently crocked marathon runner/alleged footballer Reo-Coker.
Villan444
Hahahaha. Thanks Naz - couldn't help but laugh at your comment :)
Astriel
I'm going to sit on the proverbial fence and say that i agree Houllier does indeed need more time, and certainly some signings to strengthen in the areas he feels we need it. BUT, those people saying he's starting from scratch cant be serious? Agreed we lost Milner, but the rest of the squad are the same squad that finished 6th last year. I'd put it more down to injuries than any squad weakness. It certainly is positive to see us bossing teams a bit more though, and with our squad back up to full strength, we should be competitive again going forward...
thorpyuk
zarch i think you misunderstood when i said GH was only picking the kids because he has to. The kids have far out performed the seasoned pros in the team, but will GH continue to pick the kids when everyone else is fit. However for my money football is a game of results, regardless of the methods. Anyway just leaving for Liverpool and lets see what that brings
madforit
Astriel - I'll take your points one by one.

1. I note you say we are not in the bottom four. LOL. Talk about choosing your statistics!

2. Football is, like it or not, a results business.

3. You regard Gardner and Ridgewell as quality players do you?

4. Cahill left because MON wouldn't guarantee him first team football.

5. No-one has suggested getting rid of the youngsters. They have been fantastic.

6. 16th is worse than 6th.

I suggest postponing this discussion until, say, the end of January. Then we will all have a clearer idea of exactly where we stand. My forecast? 15th or worse. What's your's?

chocolate teapot
My forecast is Gerard will sort things out,. The youngsters will do us credit. We might only end up mid-table, but the view that things are going in the right direction will be totally vindicated before the end of the season -and we can look forward with confidence. I hope MON goes to Newcastle - he deserves their Chairman after walking out on Randy's Villa.
stennyvilla
 

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