Aston Villa - Shay Given 'Protests Won't Help Team' + Fans Split
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Shay Given 'Protests Won't Help Team' + Fans Split

Shay Given has told fans they shouldn`t protest and that it is the players fault the position we find ourselves in.

Never sure players should get involved with fans v manager stuff but on the other hand, quite a brave thing to do I guess. Wonder what he has made of his time at Villa thus far? He has praised the Villa faithful but lets be honest, the atmosphere at home this season hasn`t been to our usual decent standards has it?

He said on that the protests won`t help the club or players.

He adds, and some of you might disagree with this line... "People have to realise that Alex McLeish is a great manager and is passionate about doing well for Villa. It`s always easy to blame the manager but players have to stand up and be counted, look themselves in the mirror and put in good performances."

He says it is possible some of the players are feeling the pressure. Not sure our back three are, not sure they care in the slightest, be so happy when they are shipped out, hopefully this summer. In fact, they have to be shipped out in the summer don`t they? They are just corrosive to all that is good at Villa.

"Maybe some of them are feeling the pressure when playing at home but you`ve got step up, it`s a big club. You`ve got to take that pressure on your shoulders and want to play for the club and show the fans that you`re good enough to play in that shirt."

He also adds, "It`s too easy to blame the manager, he doesn`t cross the white line and as players we have to take responsibility." Which if it was any other manager I think it would get a fairer hearing to be fair. But it has become impossible to have a realistic debate about McLeish because it all gets shout down and most made up their mind before he came and those who didn`t haven`t been enamoured with the performances.

Is it right to protest?

Well, that is down to the individual. For me, I think the timing is way way off, especially as this will be our most difficult home game this season. If we were to lose the four after this game, fair enough, we would then be in freefall. At the moment he is doing no worse than the other previous managers, just the style hasn`t been good, but then, it wasn`t under Houllier and the style of play under the man who walked out on us five days before the start of the season was hardly inspring either was it? It is just he did get the results, if you consider all that money he spent as success for bringing us 666... we all know what that number is!

I`m sorry, I appear to have gone off on a heavy metal tangent!

Personally, I`d rather support the team (NOT saying that protestors won`t when the protest is over btw) and wait until we are safe before other issues are looked at.

Our forum thread is a real mix. Remembering we had votes with 96-97% saying they`d like McLeish gone, but not everyone who wants him gone want to protest. You can never predict us fans really can you?!

Read more: Click Here

Our polls are interesting really, 96% said they would like McLeish gone.

Are You Attending The Protest?
Poll Date: 08 Feb 2012
Suggested By: d8ost

No 73%
I would but can't get to game 13%
Yes 12%
Unsure 2%

And when we asked if fans should be protesting we got:

Should fans be protesting?
Poll Date: 07 Feb 2012
Suggested By: JP Fear

Yes, at all times 48%
No 41%
Yes, before games only 8%
Unsure 3%

Personally, unless they get a few thousand there, I think the protest will be seen by the press and sky who will (as they are there anyway) no doubt film it, as a failure. Will it show us in a bad light? Time will tell.

Unhappy times, can`t believe protests are back, thought these days were behind us for a while. I hope fans who disagree show them some respect, we used to face all sorts of 'stuff` back during the Ellis protests.

End of the day, no matter what your opinion, we are fellow Villa fans, we all care. Be safe, be kind, and if you see me, give me a fiver... the latter is really the important part!!!!!!!!!!!

As said, our forum thread makes for quite interesting reading, even some of the most anti McLeish appear also to be anti the protests: Read more: Click Here

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

The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday February 10 2012

Time: 1:46PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
I do love a bit of Iron Maiden!
The Fear
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10/02/2012 14:05:00

Does Shay mention names of the players that are letting the club down, or what this "great manager" is doing to correct it? Thought not. Just more bluster I'm afraid. These players, praising the "great" manager at the moment, will be slagging him off as soon as he's gone.
Class of 82
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10/02/2012 14:11:00

Always liked Shay, never came across as a liar to me 82 (because that's what you are calling him) but everyone's allowed an opinion. He's just stating what a lot of us believe, and what we have seen with our own eyes, individual mistakes have cost us dearly, fan pressure will not make our boys play any better, but support might help, think about it.
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10/02/2012 14:24:00

Yes, all very interesting chaps, but what about Maiden?!
Think it is obvious who are letting us down this season to be honest. The summer no doubt will see them gone.
The Fear
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10/02/2012 14:33:00

LOL Fear, i thought to myself when i read about the part give you a fiver, i would buy you a beer then realised its literally a fiver for a beer at VP LOL, Shay is just trying to show fans the manager has his support be intersting to see who else comes out in defence of Eck? Class82 good point lol as soon as Mcleish is gone one day some players will be bitchin about him for sure lol
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10/02/2012 14:33:00

Sounds like it's something he said with PF standing behind him and a knife point in the arch of his back!
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10/02/2012 14:34:00

Given deserves more respect than it being implied he's a puppet I think Mr Thorpy!

You have to try these things Clive, you never know, some day I might get more than just abuse! LOL
The Fear
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10/02/2012 14:35:00

Well if it does fail, at least we can say we tried and did our bit. 97% of fans, dont want him. 56% believe protests should be carried out. We have done our bit now, its over to the rest of you now.
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10/02/2012 14:42:00

also if McLeish was a great manager would he have 2 relegations on his CV, a 3rd place finish with Rangers and the longest streak of winless games in there history. Also would we be 13th with 6 wins in 6 months? or have no home wins since 5th Nov?
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10/02/2012 14:46:00

Well the fans havent protested for the last three months and we havent won a game at home. So Shay, how will a protest make it any worse? I will be singing my head off as usual in support of every player in a Villa shirt, whilst displaying my Eck Out feelings. UTV. Prepared. McMuppet Out.
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10/02/2012 14:55:00

I am beginning to long for relegation just to say i told you so! If a team that was going from strength to strength under O'Neill at one point can turn in to this shower of sh it then it has to be the manager's fault for being able to manage!! They clearly feel demorolised by tactics, or substitutions of even his transfer dealings. Something has turned them ***** and i believe it is the arrival of McLeish and his superb record.
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10/02/2012 15:00:00

voiceoftheholte have i read right you have prepared flyers?
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10/02/2012 15:04:00

what you guys have to get into your heads that your problem isnt Mcleish, but a board who are slowly running your club into the ground. I have been saying this for a few years, but its only recently that the view point on lerner and Co is changing. I honestly believe that no manager will prosper with you, whilst he has to work with one arm behind his back and you have to see that even the likes of Stoke, QPR and several others are spending big, whilst you not only dont spend new money, but also dont reinvest what you recoup from sales of big players.
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10/02/2012 15:14:00

oxfordspur, i think you are right and hopeyou are wrong if you get me, if Randy does not invest in players for Villa in the summer then we are really in trouble, we are pushing our luck with this bunch of players who are not performong now nor did they last season under GH, Villa needs rebuilding for sure and if Randy does not put his hand in his pocket then i will be worried for where we will end up come the end of the season.
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10/02/2012 15:26:00

Iron Maiden are class, but i prefer Metalica as my No1 rock band fear, but luv heavy metal, black sabbath guns n roses, all that stuff does it for me. anyone calling shay names grow up, we are lucky to have him and please don't try turning any decent player we have left away as we need him, there are many higher placed teams who could come in for shay remember then you would realise it if they did take him of us!
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10/02/2012 15:30:00

I'm sorry but with the ***** performances I don't think any one of the shower of *****e we call players can say anything, With all due respect Shay can ***** off and concentrate on stopping goals, he should be slapping the ***** out of the back 4 not bleating to the press. Hey Villa how about you actually do something about the crap on the pitch and then maybe people won't boo and protest.
Green Villan
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10/02/2012 15:41:00

Eck has saved Given from a life on the bench in Manchester and brought him straight back after Guzman did so well!!! He's not really going to stab him in the back is he???
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10/02/2012 15:59:00

Lost a lot of respect for him though. Why do they feel the need to talk so much. Let their feet do the talking. Obviously Eck speaking to the press isn't enough as he needs to get the players to back him up publicly. Pathetic. You'd never get a decent authoritative manager doing that.
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10/02/2012 16:07:00

Well lets face it. No player in their right mind is going to come out and say yes, I don't blame you protesting because the manager IS es aitch one tee are they............
Pride of Lions
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10/02/2012 16:30:00

So he should just shut the feck up and worry about his game not what fans are doing. This just comes across as a pathetic attempt to get fans on McLeish's side and only makes McLeish look worse.
Green Villan
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10/02/2012 16:36:00

Great article and i have to say i agree with you 100% And yes Maiden are badass!!! Shay was never one afraid to give an opinion and i respect his decision to wade in on this matter, and nice to see there's some unity in the dressing room if there's none in the stands. 5 note winging its way over to you from Ireland Mr Fear, which is the equivilant of about 35p at this stage.
Holte End Hero
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10/02/2012 17:14:00

He's spent a fortune oxfordspur, the one season we were no 1 spenders, another in top 3 or 4. But MON brought in some right gash and they are counting the cost of it. The acid test IS now this summer, as there will be a large and costly clearout, all down to what funds there are for replacements to supplement the excellent young players coming through.

Never got into Metalica clive, just one of those things, agree about the others! Should join us in the music thread! lol
Shay isn't allowed an opinion. Ok! Think he has balls for saying it to be honest, not seen many or any player say what he thinks re: protests before.

35p Holte End Hero... nice one, I have to start somewhere! LOL
The Fear
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10/02/2012 17:21:00

It's all well and good having an opinion but he should be having a word with his ***** defensive team mates telling them to up their game not moaning about fans. Don't get me wrong I love and rate Shay I just think he should be telling his team mates not the fans.
Green Villan
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10/02/2012 17:56:00

Can't help but laugh at some fans, quite prepared to believe Ireland has fallen out with the manager cuz in the heat of the moment he told him to f off but don't believe Given means it when he praises him? N'zogbia makes an unprofessional comment on twitter and a lot turn round and say don't blame him but shay the ultimate professional gives his opinion and gets told to shut up? No wonder players don't wanna play for us, even one of our best performers this year gets an ear bashing! And for what? Supporting the manager and wanting to unite and turn things around? Whats the matter with these players they should all be revolting and behaving like tevez shouldnt they?! And I'm pretty sure the defence don't need shay to tell them they've been s**t this year!
Lion Heart
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10/02/2012 18:41:00

This interview was actually on talksport this morning.
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10/02/2012 19:02:00

Shay is a great player and a great pro, but the fact he has to come out and try defend the manager is quite pathetic, not for Shay but for ECK and I can be almost certin he doesn't think ECK is a "great manager" I think he is happy playing for ECK simply because he is gaurenteed to start every game but no footballer in their right mind could ever consider ECK a great manager, maybe for league 2 but even thats pushing it, and sorry FEAR have to disagree I really thought under GH we played some very nice football and most games we were not overrun like we are now in every game and he had the sense to see Warnock is not good enough for the prem, we need a total clearout in the summer players and MANAGER!
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10/02/2012 20:18:00

Pretty obvious a protest won't help the players at least in the short term, but if it gets McLeish out it will benefit everyone from players to fans in the long term. There is no way he is the right man for the job and the longer he stays the more toxic it will be come. We need a good up and coming young manager that will be here for 5/10 seasons. McLeish is a joke
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10/02/2012 22:28:00

McLeishout, you did read it right. I have prepared 500 flyers that I will be offering to people on Sunday before the game. It is anyones personal choice if they would like to have one and display it when Eck walks to the dugout. It would be good if someone else also contributed with a few hundred as well. After the protest, big or small, I will take up my normal seats near the front of the top of the Holte and sing for the team. I will be wearing my Eck Out shirt and hoping that we can beat the zillionaires from Manchester. Win or lose, makes no difference. The man is not right for our club, his managerial record is shocking and maybe, just maybe, the thoughts of protest may make the players feel they have a duty to the fans who help pay their inflated wages. What is certain any protest will not make the home results in the last 3 months of the season any worse than the home results in the previous 3. I actually think I am reasonably rational. I detest the thought of protest and do it against my normal principals and with a heavy heart. But the sense of impending doom that has surrounded the club since his arrival has not been experienced since the Turner/McNeil days. I have sang my heart out for this club this season, I am a good supporter. But the few fans who are saying get behind the club and show unity have not backed this up at any stage this season. The atmosphere has been the worst in many a year. So with a majority of fans wanting McLeish out, it is the the few who still want him, that are causing the split in fan opinion. UTV. Prepared. McMuppet Out.
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11/02/2012 11:24:00

Although I am very disappointed this season (and last for that matter) Cant help agreeing with Steff..... want to repeat his words: fan pressure will not make our boys play any better, but support might help, think about it.
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11/02/2012 11:35:00

oxfordspur - I think you are on the wrong site. However Mcleish is likely to be gone in the summer, if not before. Do you want to start your campaign now to take McMuppet to White Hart Lane to replace England bound Harry? I wait in anticipation of the 'we want McLeish' bandwagon to get in to full cry!!!!!!
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11/02/2012 11:38:00

So the fans not wanting to protest and understand the need to regroup that are splitting opinion. What nonsense. I haven't seen anyone state what they actually want, where they believe the club should be and what the alternative action to correct the problems at the club should have been. Whoever came in would have had a hard job sorting this lot out and McLeish is probably doing as well as anyone would have done. McLeish will not be gone in the summer or before it. Until some sense returns and the emotions caused by the managers former club die down a poor situation will be made worse.
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11/02/2012 13:45:00

Gordan that is a fair enough point, but let me ask you this, What do YOU want?? are you trying to tell us you WANT McIdiot at this club? are you saying he is the best man for the job? are you saying you are happy watching this rubbish every week? and I seriously don't know when you will get over the fact he was with small heath, I mean move on mate, I think 90% of fans that want ECK out is because he is a crap manager that has us playing the WORST football in the league nothing to do with him being a bluenose, in fact if he came in and continued trying to get us to play proper football like we were devoloping last year I would be his biggest fan and I think you can obviously see im not...
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11/02/2012 14:08:00

KerryVillain: we all want the same thing, a successful team and club moving forward and winning something before not too long. But we have a club at is not one of the prime earners in the premier league. Ticket prices are not the highest by any means and every game played creates a financial gap between us and the larger clubs. So after significant investment in recent year we have to reign the spending in, not helped by the fact that the spending has not left us with a strong squad. Against this background in the Summer we needed a manager capable of making the best of what he has and then growing a team out of youth and clever buys. So to date we have Given, N'Zogbia, who has not taken off yet and Hutton who is not doing the full job yet. Short term we have Keane who has proved many wrong. So the manager has got some right. I see a manager who does not wish to get beaten but is also trying to sort out what he has inherited. If his name was Moyes he would be doing OK, but it isn't and we have the situation with the fans that we have.
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11/02/2012 16:14:00

Gordan if his name way Moyes we would be playing better football as can be seen watching Everton who have had much less to spend, also yes he bought 3 good players out of 4 buys but I have to say he bought a player like N'Zogbia without actually knowning how to use a player like that so I would call it 2 out of 4 and what you said is true we are falling behind finacially but that is also because of the football being played at Villa Park at the moment and I will give myself and 2 of my mates as the perfect example, im Irish but have supported Villa since I was 3 but have never had the money to watch a game, I go to collage and have a part time job to pay for it but have been saving all year as I wanted to watch Villa this year with my 2 mates who have been twice already but I have decided that I don't want to go watch Villa this year as I don't want my 1st game to be with this boring negative football, I would not mind my 1st game being a loss as long as we gave it a proper go but under ECK the only time we give it a proper go is if we're already 2 goals behind and I know I would leave frustrated and angry instead of overjoyed to finally expierence the atmosphere at Villa Park, and im sure my 2 mates and I are not the only fans feeling like this, the simple fact is this manager takes all the fun out of football which is what it used to be for me until this year, even under GH last year we were worse off at this point but at least I could see that he had a plan and a vision for the future and given a couple seasons we would have been playing some very good attractive football, where as now i fear if we give ECK another season it could be our last in the prem, this manager will nevern bring us forward but at best keep us in the top 15 AT BEST!!!
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11/02/2012 16:46:00

@KerryVillian... yes, I agree, in patches he was trying to get it on the floor and to play the ball. To be fair, I think the same of Ecks football but for both (and usually with MON) we also have this long ball hoof thing. Some players being the common denominator in that! But yes, agree, in patches you could see what GH wanted. In patches you can see that McLeish does want to pass as well (as I've said before, I sit right by the bench and watch what the managers are asking for. MON used to tell them to boot it up and once blew his top at Sorensen not doing so... that was v Boro, the next ball went all the way up the pitch and to Schwauzer ((sp)) McLeish does try to make them get forward etc. Quite often they don't respond. That is a worry... more for him than me I'd say!
The Fear
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11/02/2012 17:03:00

Well Fear if you see that then I believe you, but that brings more problems than possitives as im sure if MON told the players to pass it they would, its just more proof that ECK is not the man for the job if he can't even get the players to do what he wants, I always felt it was ECK who was restricting our play, you can see when we have the ball no player is looking to recieve it and when a player passes he seems to just stop moving and let the responsibility so somebody else, so from what you said it must mean its the players just not bothering BUT at the end of the day its up to the manager to make sure they do their job move off the ball and pass and move, so even if the players are to blame for the hoofball it is still the manager who should be making them do the basic things right and to get them to play how he wants if he can't then he is not the manager simple as that really.
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11/02/2012 17:18:00


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