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Have Villa REALLY Forgotten We Need Experience?

Well, got to say, I`m worried and slightly uninspired by this transfer window.

I thought with a new manager and the fact we`ve flirted with relegation for two seasons in a row, that we`d have 20m or more to spend.

I think Paul Lambert was the right, sensible choice as manager, but the guy isn`t a miracle worker.

Have Villa really forgotten, or do they not realise, that we need some experience in the team?

GREAT that we are going for youth, building for the future and trying to show more sense than what happened during the free spending (and free wasting) Martin O`Neill era, but what about the here and now?

Humiliated on the pitch by Everton and beaten by a team who look certain to go straight back down to the Championship (Hammers) and all because we don`t have any leaders or top experience on the pitch.

The youth need experience to guide them through and push results.

We also need a vocal leader, you watch Villa at the moment, there are very few if any willing to shout instructions to try to gee up team mates.

Gulp. Shows how much we miss the experience of the Stiliyan Petrov ilk doesn`t it?

Can you really pick a leader out at the moment? Who would you have as Captain? Villa used to be full of captains on the pitch, we`d argue for ages over who should be the leader, now? Not so much.

Fingers crossed this works, but I think they are missing a vital ingredient and it could prove very costly. Transfer window not closed yet, lets hope we get what we need. A 21-year-old from Genk and a 22-year-old from Boro isn`t what I`d be sourcing right now and with attendances still not dazzling (early days I know) a few bums on seats players to supplement the youth who are progressing would not go amiss.

I`d agree with a friends text to me following Everton (and no, he isn`t a fickle fan, he`s been going home and away for 30 or more years) saying there are about 7 in our current squad who aren`t good enough.

Interesting times. I know, due to the turnover of managers, that the Club is desperate for a bit of stability now and that we are again in transition, that happens every time any team get a new manager, and that Lambert now has Martin O`Neill and McLeish players he doesn`t want (he`s got rid of the Gerrard Houllier one in loaning Makoun to Rennes) but he needs more than a few freebies and low fee lower division players if we truly want to dent the league.

The sad thing is, this season, 10th would be a great achievement.

TENTH? For Aston Villa? One of the most famous and historic clubs in the world? Ouch, that hurts.

And as ever, I hope the squad we have - if it remains like this - can ram these words back down the doubters throats.


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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday August 29 2012

Time: 12:00PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Still reckon that a bit of experience is essential. Whether the lads can get that from Lambert from the sidelines is debatable but possible and our only option at present. Tranmere was only 3rd tier opposition and you can only beat what's in front of you but they have little to no experience. Looks like Dunne and Given's days are numbered but they're not experienced in winning with that mentality anyway. Other than that, there's no-one. Delph for Captain. His industry lets his feet do the talking.
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29/08/2012 12:07:00

A passionate cry from the wastes of Redditch there. You have to trust the manager, Fear. Lambert is the best thing to happen to Villa since for a while.
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29/08/2012 12:09:00

Totally agree.... we need experience. Charlie Adam please!!
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29/08/2012 12:13:00

We definitely need experience, I'd take Charlie Adam, Ricky Lambert, and bring back NRC as well as signing the young lads. Would anyone take Joey Barton if offered? If we could get 6 months out of him before he goes crazy again, and is the difference between staying up and going down wouldn't it be worth it? I don't think we're in a situation right now where we can turn our noses up at players because we don't like them personally.
Stephen Jay Hawkings
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29/08/2012 12:21:00

N'Zonzi? Fair bit of Premieship experience. Big and strong. Attribute missin from our midfield at present. Wouldn't mnd Adam. By all means bring in young and hungry players, but we need experienced and hungry ones as well!
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29/08/2012 12:22:00

Almost a complete opposite to the MON in regards to prem experience. We could do with an experienced target/holdup forward (like Kenwyne Jones (even Heskey....errrgggh)). Plus an experienced prem CM (missing SP)....Charlie Adam would be sufficient but Delph holds the key here if we dont invest in one. That would do us and get us out of this trouble, assuming they stay fit.
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29/08/2012 12:26:00

I agree to some extent but we have players with experience bent Ireland n'zogbia dunne given but there just not in the right positions and none are the leaders we need. Experience in the middle of defense or midfield is what we need but am excited by the prospect o young players... Oh the confusion
Aussie Villain
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29/08/2012 12:33:00

Charlie Adam. A journeyman who had a reasonable season for err Barcelona, Manure, Juve???? Oh no I forgot it was for relegated Blackpool. He has been found out at Redscouse for being a one paced one season wonder. And you think he is the cure for Villa Park? All about opinions Lee, but I disagree with you on this one. And Fear where is Randolph getting this 20m figure you are on about. He has ploughed enough in and been let down by his managers and the supporters. Empty seats simply do not provide the money we need or the create the desire for good players to come to VP. For years we have had to pay over the odds to attract talent to VP. It has to stop. We have to attract players because of a desire to do well not the size of a wage packet. If PL can overcome the challenges of the first 6/12 months without succumbing to fan pressure and falling in to the traps that have put us in this position (such as wasting 20million on players who have no feel on or any passion for the club - in effect 20m of dead money), then we will be fine for years to come. I admit it has to be a balance. But Vlaar, Guzan, Given, Bent, Holman, Ireland, KEA, Dunne, Gabi are not kids. Bannan, Delph, Herd, Fonz, Clarke, Albrighton, Weimann, Lichaj are not 17 or 18 year olds. They have been pushing for several years and have the experience of a relgation scrap under their belt. Baker, Lowton, Stevens are untried but Baker and Lowton look like they can be real additions. A left back and a target man and the squad is more than capable of a top 10 finish. Keep the faith. This season will be up and down, but it really looks like we have a manager with his finger on the pulse as to what has caused problems for this club over hte years and is not going to fall into the same trap. UTV. The 19th minute.
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29/08/2012 12:37:00

Lads will ye come on and up it. I have a soft spot for Villa and I need Bent to start scoring for my fantasy football team!!
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29/08/2012 12:41:00

Adam and N'Zonzi, possibly on loan with an option to buy, would give experience and are still young. Benteke looks like he could do a job for us in time and can find the net unlike Heskey.Much as we might like to knock Dunne, he is missed as a leader on the pitch. Surprisingly, he plays better against good teams. Gabby is a loss too despite all his knockers. First time he gets a series of injuries and suddenly he's ****e - not true. He scares defenders with his speed. Bent has scored once since February- because he was out injured from March to May and then on his holidays. The bottom line is that Randy/PL don't want to spend big money on players who will give no further sell on value. Fees of 15m for the likes of Joe Allen are crazy. Players greed for big wages doesn't help either. Wigan have brought in the likes of Palacios and Valencia on ordinary wages and made them in to big money players, as have Fulham with Dembele. We need to be realistic and give PL a chance to build his squad his way. Vlaar Holman and KEA look OK but need time to adjust from Dutch football like Bouma did. There needs to be a period of stability and calm at the club after the madness of the last couple of seasons, there are some good international players at the club with plenty of experence, it may be time for them to step up and earn their money. We won't be challenging for the top 4 any time soon, but let's give PL a chance to stabilise in the league and give the cups a good lash. We will be OK, no need to panic yet.
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29/08/2012 12:46:00

Think we've decided to thrown loads of s**t and see what sticks....Worrying times!! Leave it too late and the bargains buy will be held to ransom..poor decisions made by the board!!
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29/08/2012 12:48:00

voth, didn't see your post till mine went up, agree wth you 100% except on Adam, he could do a job for us but I would like us to loan him rather than buy him to see what he can do.
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29/08/2012 12:51:00

We don't want overpriced British players,new coach brings in or about to young British players,,,,and you moan! We don't bring in any good overseas players, new coach brings in or about to exciting overseas players,,,, and you moan! We shouldn't waste money on overrated prem players,so the coach brings in players who dream of playing for us ,and have passion,,, and you moan! The chairman spends every season at least 20million minimum unlike tight arse Doug,,,,,and guess what you moan! We survive relegation in the toughest league in the world,we get a coach we all want,who is rebuilding the club from scouts to players,to formations to the ground staff,,but you moan because he hasn't turned things around already! As a villa fan for many years....I would like to have a moan about some of you guys.......go support the blues!
brisbane lion
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29/08/2012 12:59:00

Have to say I see Adam as just what Villa need as for being a jouneyman ? sorry I view all modern footballers as jouneymen Bent probably one of the worst lol there are very few like Gabby who shows a club true loyalty.If we are still paying for the effects of mon fair enough then we cant afford big fees but if we cant compete with the likes of Everton,Newcastle and Sunderland on wages that makes us a relegation scrapper at best or a championship club at worst. My only bright light at the moment is having a decent manager at last.
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29/08/2012 13:01:00

Mr Fear, remember what i said when PL was made manager, he is a great guy and was a good player but i am afraid his hands are tied as were McLeish, what i saw tactically at Everton was not good at all, and as i said at Norwich it was similar but they had hungrier players who wanted to just stay in the league , we are in for a huge fight to stay in the Premier League
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29/08/2012 13:10:00

Id take BArton if it was Friday at 11pm and we haven't got an experienced midfielder in definately.
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29/08/2012 13:10:00

Voice, I thought Adam was superb at Liverpool and Blackpool.....
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29/08/2012 13:11:00

Im not averse to Nzonzi or Adam, but we are short on width. Gabby isnt a winger, nor is Bannan, therefore we have unproven, though promising Holman, misfiring N'Zogbia and young, injured Albrighton. We lacked width against Tranmere last night, and this could prove to be a serious problem if not remedied!
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29/08/2012 13:19:00

lol topspur me and you both and would you tell Bale to get his finger out please hes another one.
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29/08/2012 13:19:00

but from Lamberts point of view, he did it last year and i think im right in saying not a SINGLE player had premier league experience! He's obviously getting in players he is convinced are premier league quality who will work that little bit harder
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29/08/2012 13:29:00

Adam is a left footed Hutton. No thanks. Barton would destroy team unity. Again, no thanks. Essien used to be one of the best in the world. He wouldn't come to us unless it was a for a massive payday.
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29/08/2012 13:39:00

I trust Lamberto but I don't trust Lerner, this is his last chance for me, I couldn't give a crap what he has done to Bodymoore heath or the surrounding Aston area what matters is he backs Lambert properly or he can begger off and sell us to someone who actually knows about football and that is prepared to back the manager. Last Chance Lerner.
Green Villan
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29/08/2012 13:50:00

Green Villan. When you say last chance for Lerner and don't care for what he has done on inftrastructure, are you saying it is his last chance to spend another 175m on more new players??? Nobody will invest in Everton. Who have less debt and similar support to ourselves, but are better positioned as a team. So I presume if Randolph fails his 'last chance' that you have given him, you know of several people who are just desperate to buy our club?? Might be worth sharing that knowledge because we have debts that no one is going to buy until Randolph brings the finances back in order. Might be worht noting also that Aresanal have recouped 30m more than they have spent in the last 5 years. They have lost their best players each year. But still qualify for the Champions League EVERY season. When will people realise it is all about the manager being good enough to do things on a budget (Wenger, Moyes, Pardew??) not on how much money they have. I believe we now have that manager, but it will take a little time for the affects to be seen. All we need to do is fill the ground and support and give the players confidence to be the best they can. Brisbane . . . . your points are spot on fella.
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29/08/2012 14:14:00

Green - He's spent 250m. Would you rather have had Doug ellis at the helm???? Argue that one. Blame MON for wasting his Money..... It's not Randy!
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29/08/2012 14:24:00

Delph should be made captain today. Adam has poor discipline and can't take a penalty. Joe Cole and Benayoun would both bring experience and class to Villa.
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29/08/2012 14:32:00

At least Lambert seems to have recognized that Delph and Ireland were what was missing against Everton.
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29/08/2012 14:34:00

I do trust the manager and have hopes Villa_Grizzly he has pointed to the lack of experience himself, this is not a criticism of him at all. He needs the right tools. He should also move back to the correct bench so I'm on hand to give him my much valued, cough, experience, ahem and advice! ;o)

Yup Andy!

Brisbane, it isn't moaning, it is a constructive opinion. And please, I'd never compare Doug to Randy with any favour, Randy has spent a fortune and his managers have largely wasted it, that is part of the problem now. However, my point remains as witnessed at West Ham and as seen v Everton. It might 'click', I want it to 'click' but I said the same last season and the season before. I am not being anti Villa, the board or the manager. I'm commenting on what I believe to be an obvious fact. I've studied the team at the games closely looking at who leads, who shouts, who organises. The answer? No one, we don't have a leader since Petrov had to withdraw (#19)

For instance, we bring in the Genk gent at 21 years of age. What does that do for Weimann? Bringing in 22 year old from Boro.... where does that settle with our young mids? Bring in top quality and they will understand that they have to learn from the quality, take their chances when offered, but they would understand.
The Fear
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29/08/2012 14:34:00

True avfcwills10 but he had moulded the team and the team had played together through the leagues, so there lies a difference?

The Fear
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29/08/2012 14:36:00

Brisbane and voth, I was 100% behind Randy Lerner between the Lambert and appointment and the Everton match. I also said after Lambo was appointed that anybody moaning because the team aren't flying should be treated with the contempt they deserve. However, the capitulation against Everton was a lot to stomach. The training facilities and everything else RL has done for the club are fantastic. However, the Everton result was, I believe, a direct result of the years of bad decisions at board level. Faulkner is a waste of space. He is apparently RL's emmisary on Earth and yet his grasp of modern football is astoundingly poor for a young man who has grown upduring the EPL era. The appointment of the last manager, handing MON a fortune for players like Sidwell, Dunne, Warnock etc was a very poor show. A good scouting system is a basic requirement for a serious modern football club not a Great Leap Forward. That one is only being developed now suggests that RL initially thought he could buy his way to success. He didn't, however, anticipate Sheikh Mansour and other 'developments' in the EPL and football generally. The fans -- many of them -- are just sounding off over years of wasted opportunities. Lambert will get Villa there in the end but he -- or someone like him -- should have been there after MON left. Some decent signings before the deadline would help placate a lot of the fans and add some quality to an average squad.
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29/08/2012 14:52:00

I'm with you green Villan. These that go on about randy wasting our money don't realise that he's lent the money to the club and will get it back. Under Ellis we were never in debt because he spent within his means. No-one cared when randy turned up and started spending loads because we thought that he wanted to make Villa great again and wasn't afraid to lose a bit in the process. Now we find out that he actually wants to make money, LOL. Why do we need a billionaire who doesn't have a clue about the game if he wants to make money and his billions are pointless as he's not going to spend them?? Joe bloggs knows more. If randy hadn't wasted/allowed to be wasted then the club would be in a better position for sale than Everton etc.
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29/08/2012 14:53:00

'Genk gent' Lol!!!
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29/08/2012 14:56:00

It's also worth pointing out that few real fans expected Villa to fly out of the blocks and finish in the top four this season. Neither, though, did they expect this proud, old club to be 0-3 against Everton at half-time during the first home fixture and bottom of the league before August was out.
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29/08/2012 15:01:00

voth couldn't agree more mate
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29/08/2012 15:14:00

villain444 maybe you aren't old enough to have experienced the Ellis years, he didn'tlive within his means, he milked the club dry season after season. The point of having Randy's money is that he can lend to the club when banks will not, at rates that banks do not provide and will forestay recalling the loans until time that suits the club. RL has a lot vested in the Villa, if we succeed he makes money if we fail he loses lots of it.
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29/08/2012 15:18:00

Have made this point before will make it again. What is the point in having the high class training facilities and great places to eat etc .comparable with the best in the country when we have a team that will struggle to survive in the premiership. We have things a*** about face at our club. Use Man Utd. and Arsenal as your example they developed winning teams and on the back of those winning teams they then dealt with developing the infrastructure not the other way round. I originally read that one of the things that impressed Randy Lerner was the history of Villa well quite simply history is made on the football pitch and nowhere else for a football club. Like many have pointed out its his money thats invested and him that stands to lose millions should this club be relegated my thoughts would be from a purely business point of view I would rather risk 30 mill now than lose 60 mill + on relegation and god knows how much on each season after that we would be out of the prem. I would say that I do not know how we stand re - the new fairplay rules eufa are introducing. Personally I think we have a good new manager but he has very little talent to work. But please spare me the plaudits of our "great facilities" I couldnt give a flying **** its how the team plays each week is what i care about. And can I just say no if you disagree with me you shouldnt support someone else support Villa I always will and ignore t***s who tell you to support someone else its just my opinion your entitled to yours.
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29/08/2012 15:46:00

I can only see first 5 comments on my phone. Gareth Barry, would he like to retire at the mighty Villa park.
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29/08/2012 16:13:00

I'm old enough b+b. Football wasn't so full of money in those days so it's hard to compare the 2. Randy raised the expectation and then took it all away. I understand that he's lent the monies to us at a cheaper rate than the bank would. Just as ******** well as he's the one that's wasted it (allowed it to be wasted for those MON haters if there's any our there on the off chance.) he would've bankrupted us by now if we were paying interest on it. I know the argument, " it's his money, he can do what he wants." BUT he's now going to get money back on future ticket/player sales which should've been invested into the team. His naivety is his main flaw. He should either sell up now and take the hit on money that he's wasted or commit for the long long term, but he never speaks so its hard to have faith in him and you get the impression that he sees this as a money making franchise. People will say he's invested 160 mil or whatever it is but that's peanuts when you look at the bigger picture. Like buying a house 20 years ago. It's worth so much more now. All he has to do is keep us in the prem whilst spending minimum on wages ( with the occassional panic buy if we get too close to bottom 3) and in 10 years time, we'll be worth loads more than 160 mil if he wants to sell. I genuinely hope he's committed for the long long term but as he never speaks am reluctant to believe everything I read from Faulkner.
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29/08/2012 16:15:00

What happened to Anthony Annan? Get him!
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29/08/2012 16:44:00

Agreed 100%, Merlin. 50 years from now is anybody going to be saying 'remember Villa? They had the best training facilities in England.' I once saw something about amateur boxers in Cuba. They have some of the best -- if not the best -- in the world. They also have, probably, the worst equipment and facilities. Old tires are used instead of punch bags. The FA have just built that state-of-the-art centre at Burton. It won't change anything regarding the national side being totally rubbish. Decent players and a decent manager/coach is what brings success and makes history. Not expensive 'training centres'. Results and results only are the bread and butter for the real fan.
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29/08/2012 16:47:00

Bodymoor and the Holte 'Pub' ( a misnomer, surely, given the amount of corporate facilities) was putting the cart before a very tired old horse.
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29/08/2012 16:54:00

Randy is guaranteed a return on his investment whether we are successful or not. The money he has spent has, infact, been loaned to the club with a rate of interest (admittedly below market rate) being charged on the repayments. This means The Lerner Family Trust (Randy is one of three trustees) will get more money out than they put in. Randy Lerner has not spent any of his own money, he has invested from a pool managed by that trust. He bought the club on the cheap (Approx 63million at the time of purchase) and, despite our poor showing on the pitch for several years, the new T.V deal has guaranteed that the clubs value has increased to much more than he paid. Even when we lose money from transfer deals i.e Warnock cost 8million and they only want 1.5 million to get rid of him, the liability lies with the club having to repay the loans to this trust. This is a far cry from the role of benefactor that some would cast him in. He is NOT someone who injects his own money to improve the team. The Lerner Family Trust is in effect a company that runs seperately to both Randy Lerner and AVFC. His risk is minimal and the money is GUARANTEED to be repaid. If you doubt this, just look at how all football debts were prioritised in the administrations of both Portsmouth and Rangers. Everyone harping on about O'Neill too, I agree he should shoulder some blame. He may have overspent on players and bought badly in some cases, but I'm pretty sure he didn't negotiate any fees/wages or sign any cheques. He was also not responsible for the removal of all the football knowledge at boardroom and commercial level. Club Secretary Steve Stride out the door? Head of Comms Phil Mepham too? That's ok. Randy wants to appoint his mate from MBNA to Chief Executive even though he knows sweet FA about the game, Paul "I think we can challenge for Europe this year" Faulkner. He also has a mate who was part of Operation Desert Storm. What a TIT!! The season ticket money has been banked and after Friday they wont even have to bother spinning any tales about 'new signings in the pipeline'. If there aren't at least FOUR new quality additions before the window closes we will be in trouble by the time January arrives.
heavy d
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29/08/2012 17:15:00

Not inspiring to see us in for a 21 year old from Chesterfield though ffs!
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29/08/2012 17:21:00

P.S. Leaving transfer business until late is also a false economy as you end up paying inflated prices as the selling club want compensating for the fact it is harder to replace their player within a smaller timescale. All this talk of Villa being poker faced to drive out better deals is a load of old horse **** and smacks of the club being naive at best, reactionary to the point of negligence at worst. Is getting players in early so they can have a full pre-season to acclimate themselves within their new team too much to ask???
heavy d
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29/08/2012 17:22:00

SOME of it is loans... SOME. That is via the Trust, it is a legal requirement that interest is charged on that. Not ALL of the money is in loan form at all. He will never, in my opinion (correct me if I'm wrong) make his money put in (approaching 240-250m) back and might actually be 'trapped' if he did want to sell as our market value would be, I'm told reliably (not from anyone at the club) be around 150m

I think Phil decided to move on to pastures new, he wasn't moved on/ sacked. He is at the FA now and last time I spoke, seemed perfectly happy and totally fond of his time at Villa.

Think 444 is wrong also but can't really be doing with the old Ellis arguments. He took OUT + the money ring fenced for Bodymoor redevelopment was there one AGM, gone the next + the banks had withdawn our overdraft facility, the club was not in a great shape, hence it was buyable 'on the cheap'...
The Fear
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29/08/2012 17:23:00

I think everyone is missing the point here about experience we need. This is just an excuse to take the blame away from the under performing 'young lads'- when the experienced players were always getting picked and under performing we argue we should give the youth (albeit more England than Villa) a chance then when they don't perform we just say we need experience. Well hang on the lads now aren't kids anymore Clark, Herd, bannan, Delph, Lejai, Albrighton, Baker, delfounso, are all 22-23. There are players in Premier league that are younger and have established themselves. How long more should we give them to establish themselves?, if they are as good as we think they are why haven't the big clubs come asking for them. It's not experience we need it's quality no matter what age they are.
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29/08/2012 17:27:00

Well put Heavy D....That post should be an article.
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29/08/2012 17:53:00

macca1087 there is a lot to what you say. However, with regard to time, we didnt give it to Gary Cahill and sold him on for not a great deal after about 30 games. He got time at Bolton and has come on quite well! Clark, Bannan and Albrighton have played quite a few games for us. Clark has barely had a bad game for us in a variety of positions but clearly needs time to establish a partnership with Vlaar. Albrighton wasnt great last year, but was previously and deserves a clean slate after Eck's anti-football. Bannan too could do with games, but I think a loan move would suit him more as he hasnt performed so well. None of the rest have played 40 games for us, much less had a decent run in the team. It'd be harsh to judge them just yet.
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29/08/2012 21:19:00

Agree with you Fear re - everything you say. Others, less so but won't go into it as bored of being criticized on a personal level by those doom mongers. Really inane point scoring. UTV the Villa.
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29/08/2012 22:04:00

I am just a little nervous now for the rest of our season. We have a manager acknowledging the young heads we have need experienced ones to help them and we go and buy someone from Chesterfield, and someone from Boro. Where are we going with this? If we don't get experience in we will be lucky to finish 6th from bottom. We will be nowhere near top 10. This is the most inexperienced squad I have ever seen at Villa Park.
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29/08/2012 22:19:00

revpete You are always a good indicator of feelings amongst the fans with well balanced views. However I disagree with you on the 'experience' issue. Given, Guzan, Dunne, Nzogbia, Ireland, Bent, Vlaar, KEA and Gabi are not kids. Even the 'kids' are not kids anymore and most were playing 3 or 4 years ago and have had a couple of hard season toughening up. The cycle of over paying for older players on higher wages, with no resale value has to be broken. It looks like PL is going to do that. I think we are a target man away from being OK for the season, despite the start.
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30/08/2012 08:25:00

LOL koolbill at your inane point scoring post LOLOLOL. Can't see the wood for the trees.
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30/08/2012 15:16:00


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Hull City : 30/01/2015 20:04:00
Cork To Swansea Confirmed
Southampton : 30/01/2015 20:03:00

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Vital Villa January Player Of The Month
Suggested By:  JP Fear
Guzan 9%
Clark 12%
Baker 0%
Okore 49%
Cissokho 1%
Hutton 3%
Sanchez 13%
Westwood 0%
Gil 10%
Delph 1%
Cleverley 1%
Benteke 0%
Weimann 0%
Gabby 1%