Aston Villa - Randy Lerner Statement
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Randy Lerner Statement

Several weeks back I said that following the end of the season I would clarify my future role with the Club, and address what had become seemingly constant rumours of a sale. I have come to know well that fates are fickle in the business of English football. And I feel that I have pushed mine well past the limit. The last several seasons have been week in, week out battles and having now come through this last season unfortunately limping amidst very meaningful injuries and constant sale rumours, I feel further that now is the time for me to look for new ownership and thus new leadership. I have asked the world of Paul Lambert and Paul Faulkner and they have both delivered selflessly. On a personal level it is time for me, like the Shunammite, to dwell among my own and get on with other aspects of my career, following a sale.

Above all, the debt I owe Aston Villa whether as owner, Chairman, custodian or simply as a fan is to put the Club first. To make good on that debt, I owe it to Villa to move on, and look for fresh, invigorated leadership, if in my heart I feel I can no longer do the job.

During my time with Villa, I have tried to strengthen and improve the Club's physical infrastructure both at Villa Park and Bodymoor Heath while also trying to carry on the McGregor tradition of being mindful of the local community we serve. Above all in this effort is the connection the Club has made with Acorns; the caring, kindness and warmth that players, staff, managers and supporters have shown to Mr Strudley and Acorns has wiped away all disappointments and sobered my finest memories. Still, I can see now that it is time, if possible, to hand these privileges and responsibilities to the next person or group to take the Club forward. I am appreciative of the support I have received, even in these last years of comparative struggle when criticism was due, and will look on with others - with fingers crossed, for stronger future performance appropriate to our size and heritage.

On a practical level, the Club will continue with its normal operations and plans for the summer. I've no doubt that the core staff at both Villa Park and Bodmoor Heath, to whom I owe a massive debt of friendship and loyalty, will continue to guide and protect the Club through this period of transition according to their collective sense of professional pride and long term service to Villa - the vast majority having preceded my tenure.

Finally, in light of the above, I have engaged Bank of America Merrill Lynch to advise on the sale of Aston Villa.

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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday May 12 2014

Time: 10:37AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Thanks to Lerner for everything he has done. But if this drags on we could end up in serious trouble. It will no doubt mean that Lambert will stay on as manager and investment in the team will not increase. I bloody well hope a buyer is on the horizon or we could go down next season.
Bikini Inspector
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12/05/2014 10:41:00

I hope the deal is what's best for Villa - not the bank and him. Scary times ahead - As he said Fingers Crossed. But hey thanks Mr Lerner, Enjoy retirement from football - hope you stay a fan and watch every game.
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12/05/2014 10:47:00

If he really doesn't have a buyer already then he is a real *****! He must know that this has to be sorted NOW if we are to progress at all next season. If this drags on then no one will buy us except from those wanting to make a quick buck How is that building on our heritage ??? I can hardly contain my anger!!!😁
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12/05/2014 10:50:00

Qudos for that statement- touch if class but let's hope we already have a buyer lined up!
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12/05/2014 10:53:00

This is my worst fears confirmed here, no buyer just Randy wanting to sell us, prepare for darker times my fellow Villans, i am biting my tongue and worried for the upcoming summer/season ahead.
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12/05/2014 10:55:00

Brilliant news and exactly what we need. Thanks to Lerner for his work with the training facility, Villa Park and also Acorns but it's time for a reset. It's time for someone who has the belief, passion and wallet to take us forward to step up. I think we will be sold very quickly. Pumped.
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12/05/2014 10:55:00

So we wait..... then all we get is 'the club is up for sale'?...... the rest of what I have to say is CENSORED.....!!!!!!
Pride of Lions
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12/05/2014 10:56:00

p.s. i would also like to recoup all the money i have invested in villa. i am useless in the business of running an english football club, many apologies for wasting your money. love you and leave you, cya. american pr rubbish at its best. this con man should be locked up.
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 11:06:00

"I have asked the world of Paul Lambert and Paul Faulkner and they have both delivered selflessly." pay me a few million i will also selfessly do as you wish.... all i know is ever a film was made of your tenure, i would want clint eastwood to play general krulak.
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 11:10:00

I think we are in serious trouble if a buyer is not already 'in mind and interested'. I hope RL does the proper fit and proper test, like Doug did, rather than the attitude of the porn merchants of take the money and run. We need massive change, and if a buyer can be finalised very quickly then great. Otherwise? Beware Birmingham/Blackburn type scenario...I do think RL try and do the best deal possible for Villa, but the longer it drags on, the more likely a take the money and run scenario
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12/05/2014 11:19:00

I don't know, Pride of Lions and Ali Arab. You have got what you wanted and are still not happy. No pleasing some people. For me I am grateful to Randy Lerner for what he attempted to do. No, it didn't succeed but you can't say he didn't give it a real go. Trouble is, with the advent of Man City to join Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal and Man Utd there is no hope of a club such as ours breaking into this rich man's tournament that the Premier League has become. 1 billion is no good. Nowadays we would need someone who has so much money he wouldn't notice the odd billion spent here or there. Man City have had in excess of 1 billion spent on them by their owners. So, Ali and Pride, I challenge you to name anyone else with that sort of money who has ever shown any interest in owning a football club. Thank you Randy and good luck with whatever you yurn your hand to next.
chocolate teapot
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12/05/2014 11:34:00

chocolate teapot
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12/05/2014 11:35:00

So Fear, the great oracle that you are. Any truth in the fact that a potential new owner was at the Hull game and this deal was tied up many months ago? (See what I did there?)
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12/05/2014 11:37:00

I agree with Chocolate. There is no reason to have a go at Lerner. He tried, he got out of his depth, and now he wants to pull out. Fair enough, and good luck to him. But having said that, I'm seriously worried. If we get sold to a Carson Yeung type, we could find ourselves three divisions down in no time. If we get sold to a good buyer, but not quickly, we may have to go down before we can start moving up. And if no one wants us, then I just hope Lerner makes some investment before the transfer window closes. Heaven help us.
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12/05/2014 11:41:00

Why the hell did we have to wait until the end of the season for that "statement?" Flabbergasted. What exactly has been clarified that required a 3 week wait? It looks like the A.V PR dept advised him on the media strategy for this. What player would be willing to join us under all of this uncertainty?
marlin magic
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12/05/2014 11:43:00

Rumours are the club already been sold, this is just formality lambert no he on his was same as Faulkner
Villa always
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12/05/2014 11:45:00

can not believe the way some of you lay into lambert, but when it comes to lerner your all respectful. the clueless idiot has wasted millions on us. which we are paying for. every decesion he has made has cost us. i could write a whole book of his list of errors. but no, lets blame lambert.
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 11:50:00

Bank of America? Another US based owner on the way folks. Let's hope Bill Gates has a thing for inner city Birmingham.
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12/05/2014 11:54:00

But Ali Arab, you also ignore all the good that Randy Lerner has done for the club, during his time, which is why fans are respectful. Agreed with chocolate teapot. Thanks Lerner, you gave it a good shot, but enjoy the next stage of your life post-AVFC.
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12/05/2014 11:56:00

please explain what he has done. apart from doing up a training facility and ground improvements are standard. and charity, well all businesses have a portion of there money going into charity, as it looks good on the books. i repeat he has been of no use to villa. good riddence. i volunteer one day a week and cook for disabled people. thats 20% of my working hours devoted to charity.wheras lerner maybe gives 1% of his time and money. the guy has failed.
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 12:03:00

Jesus Ali, you don't like Lerner....we get it. Your reasons for not liking him are a bit Monty Python. What has Lerner ever done for us? Well apart from ground improvements, Bodymoor Heath, 'wasting millions on us', giving us a glimpse at the top four, sorting out big sponsorship deals and all the Acrons charity work. Yes, but apart from that...what has he ever done for us. He tried, it didn't work and he's moving on. Thanks Randy, good luck in the future can we speak to Mr Ellinson now please?
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12/05/2014 12:25:00

I have to agree with you Ali,though think his heart was in the right place at the start,just naive,as far as football is concerned,then saw how much it was costing and the stick he received and decided to bale out. Im glad hes selling up,but also very worried that there appears to be no one lined up yet, lerners last mistake?lambert needs to plan and buy,now were in limbo...bleak time ahead unless sale goes thru very quickly.
brian little...god
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12/05/2014 12:27:00

This is the most fantastic news to come out of villa for 4 years. Im ecstatic about this new investment means improvement and better quality of players... surely. Looking forward to next season for a change now :)
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12/05/2014 12:35:00

PL was told to buy cheap players/wages - slash wages - and keep us in the league. He done it, explain how he is a s#it manager? Yeah he broke records for all the wrong reasons but with no real backing - he got the job done.. Fact
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12/05/2014 12:35:00

You may have a point 89 and it would be interesting to see how Lambert got on with some money to spend. It would be more interesting though if he were at somebody else's club.
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12/05/2014 12:40:00

monty python to punch and juddy....ground improvements, Bodymoor Heath, standard mate, when you buy a club thats what any owner would have done. training facilities are good for bringing youth in, hence investing in the future, big money finding gems....sorting out big sponsorship deals , utter rubbish, only happened casue the premier league is gaining a lot of interest globally.... one thing i will give lerner is that when oneil was manager i for one was well happy. but that one error has cost him huge. from there its just went into freefall. thinking about it i hate martin oneil more then i hate lerner.
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 12:43:00

But they are all gone now and a brave new world awaits us. Either that or a 'better the devil you knew' situation. Oh and the wine, the Romans gave us wine too.
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12/05/2014 12:46:00

keep drinking juddy, when you sober you will see what a mess lerner has put us in :)
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 12:53:00

Ah but has he. Imagine if he'd already sold the club and was going through the formalities of transferring ownership as we type.......just imagine. Oh.....and the aqueduct.
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12/05/2014 12:54:00

Everton and Newcastle have been for sale for ages too. No-one wants to buy for success. They will want to buy to make money and it isn't possible to have both.
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12/05/2014 13:46:00

villian444 you can have both, but you have to spend crazy money and make a worldwise brand. chelsea with a new 75k stadium could be worth 2 billion. aston villa is special, best name in the world. i honestly believe we can be a strong brand.
Ali Arab
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12/05/2014 13:49:00

Ali Arab. I hope you have a good lawyer - calling someone a con man today and some of your other comments go beyond the pale. He might not have served the club as we would have wanted, but I have never thought any of his actions are criminal.
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12/05/2014 13:52:00

Financial fair play will scupper our hope for a seriously rich benefactor. No one can now come in and do a Chelski or Citeh, and because they can't do it that way, there will be very little interest. I hope I am wrong, but we could be in Sxxt street
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12/05/2014 14:59:00

This club needed to get rid of this clueless owner who has been cutting back for years, it's not as if we have been flying and all of a sudden Randy has shocked us and put us up for sale, he wants his money back and has been preparing them up for years with the books dolling them up, he is looking out for number one GOOD RIDDANCE TO THE CLUELESS ONE we was going down with him anyway at least now we have a chance or hope we MIGHT get a new owner who wants to be ambitious not cutbacks. UTV!
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12/05/2014 17:53:00

learner gave the idiot nearly 43 over 2 seasons and look what we end up with!! the fifth biggest spenders, you don't need mega bucks to play decent football, this guy is the worst manager i have seen and i am 45 years a season ticket holder
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12/05/2014 19:48:00

Lerner's only mistakes in his time at villa were 1) not controlling the spending under MON 2) listening to the wrong people when appointing managers. I thank him for his efforts and applaud his dignity. I trust him to sell our famous club to a good owner and just hope that the new owners make sacking Lambert their first action. Those wondering how he'd get on with more money, itd be more hit and hope but with expensive players. He is tactically inept and I wouldn't trust him to spend the bus fare home. We may not have won every game playing better football but the standard of football served up at many clubs in lower leagues with inferior players is better than that seen at villa park over the past two seasons. The players we have aren't good enough to challenge at the top end of the league but a decent manager could at least get us playing attractive football with the hope of winning occasionally (even if we lose just as much) rather than being embarrassed to watch. I just hope that the sale goes through quickly so that a new manager can have the summer to get players in. The world cup could do us a lot of favors as nothing much will happen transfer wise until its over.
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12/05/2014 20:10:00

And senile.
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12/05/2014 20:11:00

well said, avbornandbred,agree 100%
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12/05/2014 21:01:00

ali arab your heads gone completely,some utterly ridiculous comments posted.i enjoy having a chuckle at some of these posts on here,everyones working themselves into a right old frenzy.calm down people,calm down.
Richard Cassidy
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12/05/2014 21:49:00

True to his word in the end...
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13/05/2014 01:01:00

cheap shot villan444, bet you are an armchair fan!!!
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13/05/2014 19:49:00

I agree with HolteEnd89. Lambert is a good manager is a tough position.
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14/05/2014 14:31:00


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