Vital Football

Latest Aston Villa News

Bryan Jones Communicates With Fans

Bryan Jones Communicates With Fans

An email update sent by Bryan Jones, head of the Academy. Think I'm ok to publish this!


First of all I would like to thank those of you who came out in force to cheer on the U19 team in the NextGen Series quarter-final against Marseille. The atmosphere created by the 3,500 supporters at Villa Park made the occasion feel even greater for our young players. We are extremely proud of the way the team performed, although we are disappointed not to be progressing to a semi-final against Inter Milan.

We created a host of chances but were unable to take them on the night and we were unfortunate to lose 2-1 in extra-time. Nevertheless, the tournament has been a fantastic experience for the players and staff and we look forward to it next year.

Just two of this year`s squad - Gary Gardner and Benjamin Siegrist - will be too old to compete in the 2012-13 NextGen Series so most of our players will go into next year`s competition having already gained experience of facing top European opposition. Five members of our NextGen squad - Gary Gardner, Derrick Williams, Daniel Johnson, Samir Carruthers and Graham Burke - now have first team squad numbers, proving that the Aston Villa production line is still rolling.

The NextGen Series has been a real eye-opener in terms of learning about the styles and philosophies of foreign teams and players. Sometimes there is a feeling of trepidation among young English players about facing their counterparts from the continent because it is often drummed into us that the French, German or Spanish youth development models are superior to ours. But people are starting to appreciate how good our system is. I think we are among the best in Europe and the results are there to prove that. It is something that we have to get into the mindsets of players.

The U18 team are currently going through a purple patch in the Barclays Premier Academy League, making an unbeaten start to 2012. Three highly-rated members of that squad also shone on the international stage this week by helping England U17s clinch the Algarve Tournament title. Striker Callum Robinson, winger Jordan Graham and defender Joshua Webb all featured prominently in the four-team tournament, which pitted England against Holland, France and hosts Portugal.

It was extremely pleasing to see Callum score the goal that clinched the title in Monday`s decisive clash against France. After winning 2-1 against Portugal in the first match, England drew 2-2 with Holland before being confirmed as champions by beating France 2-1. The reports we have received on Callum, Jordan and Joshua have been very positive. From a development point of view it is great experience for them to go and represent their country in an overseas tournament, while it offers some of our even younger players the opportunity to step up to the U18 squad in their absence.

Having so many internationals in the ranks is also a boost for the academy. In addition to the three England boys, winger Jack Grealish and defender Brad Lewis are currently away in Portugal with Republic of Ireland U17s.

As you may have read in the national press, the Elite Player Performance Plan (EPPP) has been approved by the shareholders of the Premier League and will come into effect on July 1. It means academies across the country will be graded into four categories and we hope to achieve elite status by obtaining a Category 1 license.

Finally, I am pleased to confirm that we have been invited back to the Hong Kong International Soccer 7s in May. It will be the 11th time that Aston Villa have taken part in the tournament and we have lifted the trophy on five occasions. We originally started going across to the Far East for the experience of playing in humidity and heat.

It is a well-organised tournament and the likes of Gabby Agbonlahor, Nathan Delfouneso, Barry Bannan and Marc Albrighton are among those to have represented Villa at previous Soccer 7s competitions. Our U19 squad will fly out on May 15 with the tournament taking place on the weekend of May 19 and 20.

Bryan Jones

Academy director

Read more in the forum thread: Click Here

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

Writer:J P Fear
Date:Sunday February 12 2012
Time: 11:16AM


For a minute there I thought you were doing seances at Villa Park nowadays. LOL.
12/02/2012 12:38:00
Great reading
12/02/2012 14:04:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Aston Villa Articles

No More ******* Bad Language - EFL

The Football League, or EFL for those with a rebrand nature, have called on fans across the country to say no to 'starry' language or no more...

Stats: Aston Villa v Fulham

All the stats from Aston Villa (1) vs (0) Fulham, Villa Park, 22/10/16 Att: 32,201

Follow Aston Villa Live On Twitter

Aston Villa are at Villa Park with Fulham the visitors today, this will be a 3pm kick-off.

Gardner In Team Of Midweek (22/10/16)

Aston Villa are represented in the latest Football League team of the week that has been selected after this midweek's action.

Archived Vital Villa Articles

Vital Villa articles from

Site Journalists

J P Fear
Editor email
Mike Field
Editor email
Steve Wade
no email
no email
Turkish Penguin
no email
no email
Chris Heath
no email
M Calucar
no email
JuanPablo Angel
no email

Current Poll (see more polls)

Fulham MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Sub - Adomah4%
Sub - McCormack0%
Sub - Westwood0%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Newcastle 14 10 1 3 31 19
2 Brighton 14 8 4 2 28 9
3 Huddersfield 14 9 1 4 28 4
4 Norwich 14 8 3 3 27 7
5 Sheff Wed 14 7 3 4 24 1
6 Bristol City 14 7 2 5 23 6
7 Birmingham 14 6 5 3 23 3
8 Reading 14 6 4 4 22 -3
9 Preston 14 6 2 6 20 1
10 Leeds Utd 14 6 2 6 20 -1
11 Brentford 14 5 4 5 19 5
12 Barnsley 14 6 1 7 19 3
13 Q.P.R. 14 5 4 5 19 -3
14 Fulham 14 4 6 4 18 -2
15 Burton 14 4 5 5 17 0
16 Aston Villa 14 3 8 3 17 0
17 Ipswich 14 4 5 5 17 -2
18 Wolves 14 4 4 6 16 -1
19 Forest 14 4 3 7 15 -3
20 Cardiff 14 4 3 7 15 -9
21 Derby County 14 3 5 6 14 -4
22 Blackburn 14 3 3 8 12 -8
23 Wigan 14 2 5 7 11 -3
24 Rotherham 14 1 3 10 6 -19
The Vital Football Members League
Latest F1 News
2016 United States GP - Race
Latest Vital Boxing News
Eggington Stops Gavin in Eight Rounds
Vital Football Comment

Recent Aston Villa Results (view all)

Aston Villa Fixtures (view all)

Oct 30 2016 12:00PM : Birmingham City (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Nov 5 2016 3:00PM : Blackburn Rovers (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Nov 18 2016 7:45PM : Brighton & Hove Albion (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Nov 26 2016 3:00PM : Cardiff City (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Dec 3 2016 5:30PM : Leeds United (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Dec 10 2016 3:00PM : Wigan Athletic (H)
Sky Bet Championship

Vital Members League Table

1.The Fear493
9.Stephen Jay Hawkings132
Write for Vital Football