Aston Villa - Faulkner On 'Challenging Season'
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Faulkner On 'Challenging Season'

CEO Paul Faulkner has talked about our 'challenging season' but he remains confident we are moving in the right direction.

I'm not going to go back over the recent financials, suffice to say we all know the state we were in with wages and our position now isn't anywhere near as bad as the headlines of record losses suggest when you knuckle down and look at the specifics.

For those interested, you can view Heathfield's summary by Clicking Here.

So it's no real surprise to see Faulkner say he's confident in the direction the club is heading.

Speaking briefly to the E&S Faulkner explained the way the club is looking to build and grow for the future, obviously with an eye on sustainability, but whilst this season has been nothing but an utter disgrace, Villa aren't giving up the ghost of challenging, we are just going to attempt to do it in a different way in the future.

'It's obviously been a challenging year, but it's about continuing to get better, and we're looking to bring players into the squad to do that and then grow our own. We're seeing some very talented young players in the reserve team who will also play a part next season. It's about focusing very much on the here and now but also trying to look ahead and to plan and make sure the club keeps going from strength to strength.'

For a lot of fans, understandably, what goes on off the pitch is of little importance and clearly it was the off pitch elements we needed to right and get well under control this time so round, so we can look to move forward on the pitch next summer.

Faulkner knows this, but in order to allow the 'team to give them (the fans) the football they want to see and go home happy' the financials had to be addressed.

Now everybody knows it could have been done with less pain, and maybe a little more flair had a different manager been chosen - but our house should be in order now and that should be shown in the next accounts released.

A lot of faith and goodwill has been lost by the board over the last couple of seasons, fans will always judge players that are brought in, but if the board do back McLeish properly in the summer they might will some of that goodwill back - the question haunting almost everybody though is how will McLeish use that backing?

He's clearly not going anywhere with the signing of Holman, and nobody knows how he'll work out...but...if Eck makes a habit of signing players with potential (Enda Stevens) and then scouts properly for players hitting their peak, with international and Champions League experience like Holman, then maybe, just maybe, all of us will enjoy next season - or at the very least not be quite as homicidal or suicidal as this campaign!

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The Journalist

Writer: Mike Field Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday March 14 2012

Time: 6:58PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
He's a clown and and as useful as a handbrake on a kayak.
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14/03/2012 20:52:00

I hope, when he says we're going to "try to do it a different way in the future" they mean with some proper scouts to buy some quality young(ish) overseas players, whose value will grow, to supplement the undoubtedly talented players we've got coming through. Napoli set a shining example for me. Hamsik, Cavani & Lavezzi were all signed for in the region of 23m euros in total, and now would all be sold for that EACH. And in the meantime have been pivotal in getting Napoli into the champions league, increasing their revenue and allowing them to attract better players when these three inevitably leave. Good scouting and being prepared to take a (calculated) risk on some youth from overseas can reap rewards
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14/03/2012 21:13:00

Constructive Juddy. Lurman, to be fair it was me who used those exact words lol Supplementing the youth with key senior additions has to be the way forward to be honest. Not just proper scouting abroad, but also lower leagues over here. There are a lot of players that if they do make it, could be genuine heroes for us if we move quick and get them.
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14/03/2012 21:27:00

He's a complete bloody idiot that wouldn't know a football if it smacked him in the side of the head
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14/03/2012 22:07:00

'But he remains confident we are moving in the right direction' what ******** direction is that Faulkner! the Championship, I've had enough of this clown.
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14/03/2012 22:30:00

Im not a Faulkner fan but I can't see what he's said wrong there, he has to be positive, he can't come out and say "well we've had a ***** season so sod it, let's all jack it in and down tools".
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14/03/2012 22:42:00

We are NOT going down!!! We are the same amount of points from 8th than we are from relegation so again we are NOT going down. I swear people just want to see us in the championship so they can continue on another season of moaning. What a small time mentality. Reminds me of a set of neanderthals who like wearing the colour blue for some reason. I think PF is right here. If this is what they will be delivering (as everyone with common sense knew from the start) than the future is bright again.
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14/03/2012 23:07:00

Im afraid the future does not look good if McDraw is in charge, we can not let him build a team its just stupidity he can not improve this team, he will turn all our young talent into long ball merchants and even if our club don't end up in the Championship its more than likely most our youngsters will due to negative management, youngsters need to be shown a winning mentality from the start and not to play for draws or be scared to express themselves ECK OUT is the only way we will progress!
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14/03/2012 23:25:00

Right direction???? Shut up Faulkner you total, total helmet.
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14/03/2012 23:25:00

So, the board get lamented for not speaking to the fans, and yet when they do come out and speak, they get lamented some more! They can't win. I'm no fan of Faulkner and truly believe we need football men on the board rather than him, but he's come out, tried to be positive, makes a couple of encouraging of points regarding growing our own players, building the team etc... so on this occasion I say fair play. I do wonder though if by saying we want to build our own team what he's really saying is McLeish is going to get little in the way of transfer funds....which might not be such a bad thing I s'pose...
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FECK OFF FAULKNER, you ginger muppet or should I say puppet!
Green Villan
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15/03/2012 00:16:00

i find Faulkner quite challenging. just dawned on me that both he and Mcleish are both carrot-tops.!.. oh man....where's Sidwell?
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15/03/2012 06:13:00

Jaymo, Bristol, well said. You're wasting you time trying to get constructive comments from some but you and Mike are right. It is good to hear that the board have some kind of plan and I for one would like to know some more about it, including targets. It also seems perfectly logical to me that if players are running down contracts to earn a golden hello from the next club, then we should not be paying Mon type fees to get them in in the first place. As a thought though these free Bosmans are not 'free' are they - the players I assume are being a paid a fee up front instead of a fee being paid to the selling club?
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15/03/2012 07:10:00

The only thing that i'll be happy to hear from PF is "Alex Mcleish has been removed as manager of Aston Villa with immediate effect. He's been told to never bring his boring negative dull tripe to Villa Park ever again!"
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15/03/2012 09:50:00

'Challenging' is manager speak for '****'. 'Moving in the right direction' is manager speak for 'going down the plug hole'. It's not good enough for the board members to speak to the fans. They also have to tell us the truth.
chocolate teapot
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15/03/2012 10:22:00

Judging from some of the comments on here there are quite a number of prime candidates for Faulkner's role. You should be sending your CV's to Randy.
Cheshire Villan
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15/03/2012 10:33:00

I am one of those who went banging on about lack of communication from the board as to where we are heading. So I am not going to critisize every word the guy says.I feel the board will have to look again at its finances at the end of the season when the true cost of this seasons form and displays becomes known in advance season ticket sales I regret that this will be were the price is paid. I also believe not many if any fans think we will be relegated this season,most are concerned about next season.
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15/03/2012 10:37:00

Mike called me 'constructive', thanks Mike. Your kind words go some way towards ensuring I can pull through these tough times at Villa Park, don't go changing now you special guy.
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15/03/2012 10:49:00

For the sake of balance - what do you expect him to say? He's not going to come out and say this has been a **** season and the manager needs shooting. There is nothing more to say.
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15/03/2012 13:16:00

I just can't believe the fact the fans need to know everything that goes on behind the scenes of the club. We pretty much have the same communication from our board that the majority of over clus fans get. Why do we need to be special and have our hands held through every change. Its rather pathetic. He's said the right things here and makes me feel slightly more positive about next season. Got to know though. Where do most of you get your crystal balls from?? Would love to know what will happen in May 2013 like all you seem to.
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15/03/2012 14:06:00

So your the only Villa fan not to have won the lottery Jaymo ? lol
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15/03/2012 14:43:00

Why I can't afford a season ticket Merlin!
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15/03/2012 14:56:00

I aim to please Juddy. We all need a little support and a pick me up at times like this PMSL
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15/03/2012 16:19:00

Going in the right direction? One win at home against Fulham means shat all to me. We need more wins back to back to be considered to be going in the righ direct. These words are premature Mr. Faulkner.
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15/03/2012 16:32:00

Jaymo, I can't feel a lot better about next season just because Fulcker said it will be ok. Call me Mr. sceptical but I don't believe everything that he says juat because he opens his mouth. He doesnt know what hes on about RE: football and after previous tall stories and nonsense like we're aiming for European football next year why should we believe him. They need to speak to reassure the fans telling of plans and then follow them through because things are abysmal. Words are worthless. He could say anything, where is any proof
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15/03/2012 17:59:00

Faulkener's hollow sound-bites don't help. Mudslinging by fans doesn't help either. The facts as I see them are that four things can bring joy in modern football, one is spending obscene amounts of money on players, the second is knowing which players to buy, the third is having a manager who can bring the best out of the increasingly primadonna-like players, the fourth is having a manager who has the vision and ability to play attractive football with mediocre players (e.g. Swansea). We have none of the above, nor a plan to get any of the above. I'd only like to hear from the board if they're going to change things so we can get some of the above. Otherwise, I will continue to moan. Oh, yes, and I blame ...
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16/03/2012 08:18:00

Some fans do have the nous to understand the financial implications and how this affects the planning for any football club. Unfortunately the club employed McMuppet. This means that attendances have dwindled and the financial income has reduced. To combat this the club have been heavily discounting games just to keep the numbers above 30,000. The current policy of fiscal management is to attract less customers paying less money. And we trust Faulkner to take our club forward???? Season ticket sales will be the back breaker for McMuppet. It will not surprise me to see all sorts of deals come out of the woodwork to encourage up take of season tickets just to keep McMuppet. I wouldn't trust Faulkner to organise the proverbial knees up in a brewery.
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16/03/2012 09:10:00

Wow, what a depressing read. No, no, not the article, the fickle and completely negative comments from 'fans'. I am no fan of Faulkner, McLeish or our current style (or lack thereof) of playing football. BUT! Everyone with half a brain and any kind of attention span knows we're in a transitional period. I hate the phrase too as it seems to make an excuse for inept periods for football clubs, but that's exactly what we're in. A manager in his first season, given the undesireable job of shipping off dead wood from a club to save as much money as possible while speniding next to nothing, all the while making sure we're still in the Premier League next season so we can build on what we have. Task 1 accomplished as far as I'm concerned. You do all realise we're only 3 points from being in the top half of the table right? I could be a lot happier with Villa at the moment, had we millions to spend, Jose Mourinho as manager and Randy Lerner on speed dial so I could tell him I've got hundreds of other managerial candidates that are Villa fans to hand on a local forum. Not the case unfortunately, on McEck isn't going anywhere. What he is doing is blooding our youngsters that our club can be built around in future, and if he continues with signings like Holman, bringing in quality and experience to supplement them. Heads up people, we're the 12th man.
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16/03/2012 09:28:00

'Only 3 points from being in the top half of the table' !!!??? woohoo!
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16/03/2012 10:25:00

Mancini 'It was my fault we were beaten by Sporting Lisbon'. McLeish 'It's the players/fans/pitch/solar flares/horoscope fault we were beaten by ... Swansea/Baggies/...blah blah blah'.
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16/03/2012 10:35:00

mayo - are you completly missing the point? McMuppet has history in developing clubs, working on budgets, blooding youngsters. Unfortunately all the clubs he did this with went backwards. Motherwell. Rangers. Small Heath. And as for next to nothing to spend . . . errr I have over 20m in the outbox that would disagree with that statement. And as for this rubbish about transitional periods. Swansea, Norwich and Newcastle with much lower spend than McMuppet seem to be coping better and playing considerably more attractive football in their 'transitional periods'. The club needs vision (not money), it needs leadership, and most of all it needs a man at the helm that epitomises everything about the club (Ferguson, Moyes, Wenger, Guardiola, Lambert, Rogers). McMuppet is reputedley a very nice man. But he has a record of building failing clubs. That record by default is now attached to us. It has to change. That is not negative or fickle. It is a positive statement of the bleeding obvious.
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16/03/2012 11:03:00

Well said voice. So if we manage to beat Bolton who else are we going to beat this season? We have managed an amazing 7 out of 28 games so far. That's 1 more than Blackburn and the same as Bolton.. yeeeehaaaa. Don't worry though we have scored more.... oh hang on a minute Blackburn have scored 40, us 31. Exciting times....
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16/03/2012 11:19:00

We have 17 points from the 9 games so far against the bottom 5. And we have 16 points from the other 19 games. This is indefensible. Transition, injuries, bad luck - baloney. It is lack of vision, enterprise, bad management, poor decision making and some of the most unattractive football ever seen at Villa Park. McMuppet Out. Boycott of Season Tickets is the last thing open to the supporters. UTV
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16/03/2012 11:43:00

Manchester teams were shown up last night by continental teams. The prem is going downhill in quality but owners are happy as long as they're getting their TV money. We are going downhill much quicker than everyone else. Eck's fault and therefore Fuclker and Randy's for employing him. This is a football club, not an office company in the city. By killing the football the business suffers. F***ing simple.
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16/03/2012 12:11:00

some of you would shoot anyone talking about anything Villa at the moment, even when they speak the truth. Jeez
The Fear
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19/03/2012 16:02:00


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