They Think it's All Over......Why?
I write this article because I have been puzzled by the reaction of some fans after the first 2 games of the season. Let me say that again, slowly and clearly....the FIRST....TWO.....GAMES.....of the season.
While I understand that most supporters are on board with the new manager and his long-term plans for the club, we still have a following who Tweet/post before they think.
Okay, we`ve lost the first 2 games of the new season, humbled at home by an inspired Everton side and prior to that, beaten by a Sam Allardyce team which will always be renowned for its physical approach to the game. However, why some people are throwing in the towel already is beyond me.
Paul Lambert himself took full responsibility for the Everton result (a brave new direction compared to that taken by the previous manager) and will no doubt be working hard to ensure that we can put some points on the board sooner rather than later. Personally, I feel that Shay Given should take a look in the mirror and ask himself whether he has what it takes to be a keeper at the top level any more; mediocre last season, below-par at the Euros and has been at fault for goals a couple of times already. With Brad Guzan back to bash the door down for the no.1 spot, he must surely be in with a shout. But I digress.
So where do people feel that we are lacking? "We need more signings and experience" seems to be the main grumble among most supporters. The big question is, realistically, who is there available to us that will fit in with Lambert`s criteria? He has stated clearly that he wants players who want to play for Aston Villa for a reasonable wage, so when fans question why we haven`t gone in for Adam Johnson or Junior Hoilett, think about their pay-packets. Adam Johnson will be handsomely paid by MON for his services regardless of whether he performs or not, and Hoilett has jumped on a snowballing wage bandwagon called QPR which could soon spiral out of control and destroy a small village in London. There`s no doubt that we need more strength in depth, but lashing out £15m each on a handful of players shouldn`t be the answer, and it is frustrating to see that certain fans still haven`t grasped the concept that less is more. I`d rather see an underrated Bosman signing bleeding for the cause instead of a talented £15m charlie or trick pony who only turns up when he likes.
Media pressure also doesn`t help. When Sky Sports or Match of The Day report that we`ve made our worst ever start to a league campaign or that we`re bottom of the league AFTER 2 GAMES, logic should reign supreme and suggest that leagues are won and lost over a period of 38 games. Instead, these words creep into the hearts of most supporters and the trolling begins; what is PL thinking? Why didn`t this player start? Why didn`t we do this? Why didn`t we sign them? People swallow the journalist articles and believe the words as gospel, causing Villans across the city, the country, hell, even the world, to take on preconceptions that haven`t yet been proven and only serve to upset the applecart. The reality is that 2 games have passed, and in all likelihood Mr. Lambert has probably suggested that the shortlist for targets be reviewed after the first few games. Why the panic?
Finally, one last reality check; we will not be making huge progress this season. 16th and above will be an achievement. We will not be pushing for top 4 or Europa League places, even after 5 wins on the bounce. Equally, we will not be getting relegated if we lose the next 3 games in a row. The whole idea of Lambert`s appointment was that he is a hungry young manager who needs time and patience to build his own team and get the boys playing the Lambert way. This will happen in due time, but fans need to be patient. Like any good relationship, it takes a lot of hard work, perseverance and dedication to make it successful, through good times and bad. Let the media spin its wheel and sell its papers and headlines, Villa will always be a footnote to them until we are ready to rise again. Let Paul Merson slate us on live television and let Robbie Savage try to rile the supporters once represented by his arch-nemesis Sir Dion of Dublin. Let everyone question the prospects of Aston Villa for the coming season. In the meantime, let`s keep our heads up and remember that Rome wasn`t built after 2 games.