Writer: J P Fear
Date:Sunday August 5 2012
John Richardson has a report today in The Express saying that Villa owner Randy Lerner, who has just sold the Browns for around $1billion, has put the feelers out to sell Villa also.
Remember Villa CEO Paul Faulkner the other week (see: Villa NOT Up For Sale) said:
'The Browns situation means absolutely nothing with regard to Aston Villa - neither good nor bad. The big point that people sometimes forget is that he inherited Cleveland - he bought Villa. Any rumours that he could be thinking about getting out or losing interest is nonsense.'
The paper report today says Sunday Express Sport has been told by a reliable source that feelers have been put out for potential buyers of the Midlands club.
A very easy thing to say. I can have a source that believes we are after Lionel Messi. It won`t prove true but I could then blame the source, not myself for the rumour!
They point at the cost cutting as a sign that Randy wants out, as opposed to a sign that the wages got way out of control and had to be brought back in line to fit into the new fair play rules.
Looks a pretty sloppy report to me. HOWEVER. Everything has a price. You don`t have to put a club like Aston Villa up for sale, if there is money (IF) out there, potential suitors would employ the right people to look at different options, much like when Randy wanted a Premier League Club.
It would take a hell of a lot of money to get Villa now though, the figures often mentioned are in excess of £220million put into Villa. I can`t see the owner wanting to take a loss on that, and why should he?
You also have to question what sort of potential new owner would be out there and what would push Villa on? Personally I despise the way Chelsea went about buying the league and could have wept last season when Man City did the same (NO disrespect to the fans of either club by the way, I`m sure they would feel exactly the same way - well, the original fans would, not the new ones attracted by the ridiculous spending and success - if Villa or anyone else did it!). But it is only that sort of owner that would make any real difference to Villa. We`d lose our identity in my humble opinion along the way, some of you disagree I know. It is probably the only way you`ll ever win the league again, but it isn`t really winning it the right way and frankly I think I`d find it boring! I always remember a conversation I was told between an old Chelsea fan and a Villa fan. The Chelsea fan said it had all been interesting but it wasn`t his club any more.
One thing I do trust Randy with is the guardianship of Villa. I trust him 100% that he wouldn`t sell this club of 'ours` to just anyone. It would have to be someone right for Villa. Personally I can`t see anything imminent happening at all. Is there that much mad money still out there?
If so, Villa, thanks to Randy et al sorting out our infrastructure etc, has to be one of the prime clubs for investment. But that is a massive IF.
Remember Everton have been on the market since the early 1600's (well, it seems that way doesn't it?! Shocked no one has come in for them to be honest!) and Newcastle were for sale for a very long time and no one came in for them. Saying you want to sell and actually selling are obviously very different things.
Oh and he hasn`t put the club up for sale, but surely every club, much like most assets, has a price. Only person who truly knows what that price is, is Randy Lerner.
Date:Sunday August 5 2012
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