Aston Villa - I Don't See Where The Rewards Are Randy
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I Don't See Where The Rewards Are Randy

Well, I have to say I`m stunned at the turn of events at Villa. I'm saying this and then shutting up (as much as possible) for the rest of the season.....

As many know (and some never fail to throw back in my face!) I helped in the protests against the previous board and owner.

The change in regime was exciting, it all started so well didn`t it? Now we are back to anger, frustration and upset amongst Villa fans.

The Villa and the Villa fans, to be frank, are all I care about.

So, we`ve had a wretched season this season and people, I guess, are right, Doug Ellis would not have stood for it. I can`t argue, he`d have pulled the trigger. I don`t look back with much fondness and 300 years in charge (or something like that) and just two league cup wins. OR relegation just five seasons after winning THE European Cup. You talk to the heroes of 82 and they will tell you they were wrongly dismantled and we lost our chance of doing in the 80`s what Liverpool ended up doing. Dominating.

So no, I don`t look back with rose tinted spectacles.

However, my energy and support of the current owner is now also very stretched. I`ll hold my hands up, I`m not doing protests again. I did it all once, it is a soul destroying thing to do as all those who took part, organised or even just turned up and supported will know, never again. I get asked, I say no. You only do one campaign and that is it, done and dusted, no thanks, not well enough even if I wanted to and I am putting myself first in life these days, brain aches aren`t great and last year, it was a close run thing just staying around.

I think the finger of blame for our lack of success goes to many, not to just one, but Randy is at the helm and the buck stops with the top. Always has. You take the glory, you take the flack. I am not saying Randy out, I`m not necessarily saying Randy in. The old protests taught me one thing, it is all well and good saying Ellis Out, Randy Out... anyone out. But you need an idea of who in. We never had that part of the answer. Back in the day, we just wanted a clear signal that Doug would listen to offers. Is it so easy now? Well, it wasn`t easy then, so it hasn`t improved and with the mad money now involved and the money Randy has put in (also bearing in mind, some of the money is from Villa income, ie tv money etc)

We`ve had some terrible decisions recently. Gerrard Houllier was too old, too ill. I say this from the standpoint of someone who understands what ill health does to the body, so no offense meant. It wasn`t a cheap project with him in charge but then, he was never fit enough to see it through anyway. It ended as suspected and sadly. He also did the Club and owner no favours with some of the things he said. Then there was last years decision. We`ve done that, lets not go back, to be fair, at least he never blanked hard working press guys doing their job (and that is all they are doing) and he always, despite some really vile abuse, always tried to acknowledge the fans AND made the players do so.

Then this one. The majority on forum polls wanted him, albeit, we were hardly linked with top notch managers were we really? Maybe the fact so many were pleased is why the worst start in 48 years hurts more? He did have money, not a kings ransom, but I believe we were fifth top spenders in the summer and he did state himself there was more money if he had wanted it. £22m isn`t massive in football these days but it isn`t tiny either. I said during and at the end of the transfer window that he`s tried to do it all too quickly, worst premiership squad I`ve ever seen etc. Sorry to be a wise arse, but I did. It was obvious. Men v Boys. That is his fault. He must have known the £ he had, he must have known the £ for wages etc. You do not send boys to play v men (do I need to rephrase that?!) and this project has been embarrassing thus far.

So... We now have the vote of confidence from the Chairman. Now usually I`d say the dreaded vote of confidence, but no, from Randy this is a communication because he has been implored to communicate and he will stick to what he has said. He won`t be sacking the manager judging by what he has said. So, we now know. For good or bad, Lambert is staying. One poster in the forum has told us other users who all said good appointment, to man up and support. I think during a game I do nothing but support (most do) but surely on the evidence of the thrashings, on the worst start etc etc we can revise our thoughts?

His statement: Randy Lerner Speaks And Backs Manager

I am pleased he has at least communicated, I know a lot of people have tried and implored him to do so.

But the one bit that confuses me is:

"It has been rewarding at times this season although certainly frustrating as well, particularly recently."

What have I missed? Liverpool was a great game, but they should have battered us, they missed a hatful before we took our chances (and we duly celebrated like we`d won the league because we`ve had scant 'reward` in recent years)

But come on. Where are the rewards? 4 wins this season. That is a disgrace for a club this size, or am I missing something?

West Ham 1 - 0 Aston Villa.... awful, dour game, we were shapeless and clueless.

Aston Villa 1 - 3 Everton.... they battered us, the score doesn`t reflect that.

Newcastle 1 - 1 Aston Villa... decent away point.

Aston Villa 2 - 0 Swansea.... things starting to take shape we thought?

Southampton 4 - 1 Aston Villa... nope, humiliation. That was a thrashing v many pundits relegation tips.

Aston Villa 1 - 1 WBA .. fair point

Spurs 2 - 0 Aston Villa... so easy for them.

Fulham 1 - 0 Aston Villa... so easy for them.

Aston Villa 1 - 1 Norwich... home and again no win

Sunderland 0 - 1 Aston Villa... rewarding to beat MON I guess!

Aston Villa 2 - 3 Man Utd... exciting game, but 2 up and we threw it away

Man City 5 - 0 Aston Villa... humiliation

Aston Villa 0 - 0 Arsenal... soaking wet but an unexpected point.

Aston Villa 1 - 0 Reading... is that rewarding? It was important, but a home win v a club like Reading would have been expected back in the day?

Q.P.R. 1 - 1 Aston Villa ... meh

Aston Villa 0 - 0 Stoke... more home games, no win. (was just 3 or was it 4 home wins throughout 2012)

Liverpool 1 - 3 Aston Villa... yes, great, and we celebrated it. The positive folks said we`d turned the corner.

Chelsea 8 - 0 Aston Villa... car crash, Lambert if he had any decency might have questioned his beliefs and tenure at that stage, we`d already had the worst start in decades and then this.

Aston Villa 0 - 4 Spurs... and so it continued

Aston Villa 0 - 3 Wigan... and so it continued...

Swansea 2 - 2 Aston Villa... surprise draw and much needed points.

Aston Villa 0 - 1 Southampton... the double done by relegation favourites.

WBA 2 - 2 Aston Villa... 2 up and we still couldn`t win.

Cup rewards? Good v Norwich and Man City, but come on, we lost over two legs v a '4th division` side and then in the FA Cup to a '2nd division` team.

I seriously don`t see the rewards. This has been my least favourite season ever as a fan. I started it feeling no hope, no optimism and having no excitement at all. My positivity (which always knew no bounds) totally sapped and from the first game onward, nothing changed my sinking feeling.

I did an article in January saying this season hasn`t been acceptable: A Fear Moan! Season So Far Totally Unacceptable

I`ve not revised or changed my mind since.

We at least now know he is staying and from what Randy is saying, I`d say even if he takes us down, they think him the right manager. Not sure why that would be the case. If McLeish got the push for 16th then.............

So there you have it. I wanted to clear my mind, do an article, as I`m sometimes accused of being up the backside of the new regime, I am not. I didn`t 'turn` on the old lot for over a decade or more either. However I am fed up of upset,angry and hurting fans. We are the lifeblood but it does seem the blood is draining to me. I`ll not be doing a weekly rant or rave, all that is left is to hope, pray, support (especially this fragile team of ours, they need our help, they are all trying, some just aren`t quite the grade and some aren`t ready yet)

Who knows, Randy backing Lambert might re-energise him and he might be able to re-energise the team. That is all we can do now, support and hope. Personally, I think they have sent us down. I would LOVE them to ram those words back down my big, claret and blue, gob.

Maybe in a year or so, we`ll see the vision that they do, we`ll be through this 'transition` (another one) and be playing the great football and winning games. The hear and now? A lot of money for very little reward as far as I can see and the amount of people telling me they aren`t going again is alarming, even long standing season ticket holders who have just grown tired of it.

In three teams being worse than us we trust.

Hopefully Randy will come to the remaining games, share the rewards and at least show us that he is with us, the manager and the team.

Over to the 12th man as usual, the only brilliant and constant part of this club I guess. UTV

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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday January 28 2013

Time: 4:31PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
We luv ya Fear dude, you should have a statue in bronze imho outside VP on our fans behalf for fighting for Villa under the Ellis days, when we all wanted a new start from old, you did it where many wouldn't have, so no blame on your shoulders dude how things are turning out, its just been poor decisions thats cost us from the board and managers they backed, but agree time to back Lambert as he is being backed by Randy so lets not shoot ourselves in the foot folks im a pee'd off as many of you about some of his signings lack of experiance and decisions he has made but lets support the Villa as we have been and hope we get some players in UTV!
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28/01/2013 16:50:00

lol, cheers Clive and yes, got to just support the team, it is what we do best in my humble.

Really do think it could have been far better worded, rewards? No, they should have talked about the worst start we've made in nearly 50 years and that they are looking to address it and still believe the manager to be the right one to develop and bring us stability.

There is no use at all hiding the facts or trying to ignore them. This season is anything but rewarding. I'm sorry, I would LOVE them to succeed, I like the guys, I don't think they are messing up on purpose etc etc etc. But the league table does not lie, they are messing up and Randy isn't around to take the flack or just share the pain of this season, he leaves it to his CEO which I find unfair!
The Fear
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28/01/2013 16:59:00

PF has a boss as all of us doin life, i do not blame him, at the endof the day he can make suggestions etc but thats about it imo unless i'm wrong! We all know what a mess we are in and Randy should be here and ensuring players arrive for Lambert if he does back him and see a long term relationship with him no doubt, Three days to lift the place and get some buzz back, and hope, lets see if Randy pulls out the stops to save his buisness and ur club that is all that matters now, whats done is done, our fans have proved what a top lot they am all season and deserve better, C'mon Randy sort it out!
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28/01/2013 17:04:00

Well Said Mr Fear, agree wih all, i am just so dissapointed why everyone else didnt see it comming. i dont rate Lambert and have never rated him but it seems we are stuck with him now so we have to really try and support the team. still its so depressing
Report Abuse
28/01/2013 17:10:00

I agree with most of what you say. You sound as frustrated as me and my close friends about our current situation. Although I can not excuse Lambert's inability to change the tactics during a game so we can defend a lead, I do think he has brought in a more enjoyable team to watch, when we have the ball. Yes, I know we lose it too often in midfield and defence. Yes, I know we struggle to make defence splitting passes for our forwards to run onto. BUT, I for one, remember MON's tactics of scoring a goal and defending like hell trying to hold on to game and maybe scoring a second break away goal. AND I also remember he who shall not be named tactics of lets defend and hoof the ball out of defence to no one, even though we haven't actually scored yet. I cannot remember being so humiliated and having to hide at work, like I curently have to before. HOWEVER, I still would not change Lambert, and his efforts at attacking football, for either of the 2 previously named managers. I do wish he would change his tactics when we are winning by 2 goals, or 1 close to the end of the game though. UTV
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28/01/2013 17:13:00

Excellent article JF, can't disagree with any off it.... well, not a lot anyway...
Pride of Lions
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28/01/2013 17:18:00

Nice article sir, the part about your least favourite season sums it up really. I agree fully and will sit back and just watch it unfold with a tear in my eye.....
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28/01/2013 17:19:00

Agree with nearly everything you say JP only one point I think is worth making 22 mill sounds a lot of money but we let 8 players go you cannot get 7 players of any worthwhile quality for that sort of money we managed one he cost a third of the budget. Guzan & Holman were freebies. And the wages they were brought in on you can bet was hell of a lot cheaper than those who went hence IMO the sudden interest in a "youth policy" which the manager did not seem to have at previous clubs. Yes I believe Lambert is towing the line as part of his contract but he signed it and its his tactics so he must shoulder a portion for a defence that cant defend corners. The players he inherited unfortunatly were poor in general but mystified why he has not brought in a couple of loan players of reasonable qualityto the midfield arguably our weakest link. In support of Lambert I would say whoever inherited what he did was in for a tough time.
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28/01/2013 17:24:00

I didn't really get the statement either. But good statements don't get you 3 points anyway. We need him to get over here and sign some players ideally. He doesnt sound to enthusiastic about doing that reading between the lines. So as others have said, this is it for us, so lets just get behind them. If we go down there will be plenty of time to let them know how we feel. If not then we can count ourselves lucky.
Bikini Inspector
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28/01/2013 17:26:00

Lets just hope we all laugh about this in a season or two and see the light!
The Fear
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28/01/2013 17:39:00

Can't really add much to that, well said Jonathan. UTV and hope against probability that we can stay up.
Report Abuse
28/01/2013 17:44:00

I thought I saw the light but it was just someone bringing me more work.
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28/01/2013 17:49:00

It's just like the Kinder Egg's ..... never get the *****in glider !! ;)
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28/01/2013 19:01:00

All fair comments. I know what you're saying about starting off a campaign of no confidence; just the same as a litigation battle when it ends up being the little man verses the big rich corporate, it destroys your soul as it consumes your life. I can't remember feeling this bad about the Villa in 1987 though, probably because I had other adventures in my life to keep my outlook positive. I thought Ellis was an awful over-egotistical Chairman, but you couldn't argue about his love of the Villa. RL is the total opposite of Ellis, so many of us got what we wanted, but it is not working either. Also it will be harder to get shut as well because he's never here to see our anger. I think we just have to accept the current course and hope he gets lucky eventually or gets bored & beggars off sooner rather than later. Foreign owners. The scurge of premiership football.
Windy Villain
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28/01/2013 20:51:00

Total respect JF and many thanks for all you do for our club. There is nothing more I can say. The performance and management of the team on Tuesday night against Bradford left me numb.
Forest Hill Villan
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28/01/2013 21:28:00

Every season it gets worse!! I feel like a bit of a dick now kicking up such a fuss over Houllier. I think given time it would of turned out ok if he had of been in better health that is. I just don't know what else to say bad times, bad, bad times!!
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28/01/2013 21:44:00

I think that we would of done very well under GH. Top French players. He knew Ligue 1 like no other. But it wasn't to be.
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28/01/2013 22:36:00

You reap what you sow. Say what you will, Doug Ellis loved Aston Villa. I remember those chaotic scenes welcoming 'the messiah' his last managerial appointment and final 'gift' to the Villa faithful. You've also forgotten the money he gave to each successive manager for their big signings - Collymore, Angel & Balaban! Lerner promised us a five-year plan. I took that to be Champions League - not the Championship!
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29/01/2013 13:48:00

Thanks Forest, means a lot that.
The Fear
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29/01/2013 14:09:00

I'll sidestep yet another Doug debate I think gazvilla, the club was dying on its knees, he might well have done well for you but I'm sure you'd agree, even the most brilliant of people have to know when to leave and he did take it too long, we'd become a bit of a mess financially and weren't reacting to the modern football world. However, that isn't to say these times are happy now either!
The Fear
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29/01/2013 14:10:00

I'm not saying Doug was perfect but at least he kept us solvent & you'd have to admit that his ego would not allow us to be in the position we're in now, he'd try to do something and we'd probably hear from him as well. The most frustrating thing is the board's silence, which is coming across as a lack of ambition. 3 years, 3 managers & 3 relegation dogfights - with this easily being the worst.
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29/01/2013 19:36:00


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