Vital Football

Latest Aston Villa News

Something For The Weekend (292)

Something For The Weekend (292)
Goodbye-ee!

There might be some doubt about the existence of the Bermuda Triangle these days - a place where ships and aeroplanes used to disappear, from the 1950's
onwards - but there seems little doubt that the Wilmslow triangle is not only fully functional but is actually increasing in size, and it is where we see football egos migrate to in flights of financial fancy.

Or, as it's more commonly known, wag heaven.

But we can't blame the women for this, one of many, symptoms of football affluenza, though. It is usually contracted through prolonged exposure to the contagious carriers who frequent the sanctum sanctorum of England's international elite, where egos clash and serial domestic winners hold court. Where profligacy is paraded and millions spoken of as the natural reward of the especially gifted.

Capello even chose his final World Cup squad, based on who could thrive in this hothouse for multi-millionaires, and who could not. The too humble and diffident Theo Walcott was sent home, Wright-Phillips and James Milner remained.

When the Celestial City beckons, the football pilgrim must answer the call.

John Gregory was wrong; there is a difference between enjoying a life-style based on 4m, rather than 1.5m a year, especially if it comes with less responsibility and less pressure, than the same pay-packet might entail at a smaller club. Add in the bonus of being able to own a house big enough to give the mother-in-law her own wing, promotion to the wag elite for the Missus, and a decent chance of wiping the eye of the Sky Four, for the player, and you have an irresistible package, which is impossible to refuse.

If the player grabs at it, he is thought greedy; and if he refuses it, he is accused of a lack of ambition. But, although he can never escape criticism entirely, he still has to choose what is best for himself as a pro.

Doubts about motive will always persist with the fans though, as too many players it seems, are rather too content to see out their time in the reserves, picking up wages the market would not match, rather than actually getting in a first team every week, elsewhere.

Its hard for Villa fans not to revert to cynicism, when they have seen players like Sidwell (56 appearances for Chelsea and Villa, in 3 years) and Marlon Harewood (29 appearances for Villa in 3 years), happy to see out their contracts in the reserves.

Obviously James Milner deserves the benefit of the doubt but as Richard Dunne has publicly reminded him, he goes in the knowledge and acceptance that he is far from guaranteed to get in the team, where at Villa he would enjoy high status, the special affection of the fans, and substantial opportunity to improve his game, in weekly view of the England manager.

He can even see that the guy he will follow to City's El Dorado, Gareth Barry, is now less of a player, than he was at Villa and seems to have lost the positional-discipline which enabled him to overcome the problem of a lack of pace, which left himself and the England team, so often exposed during the World Cup.

He would go in the knowledge that some players, like Micah Richards seem to have gone backwards since City became a money-bags glamour club. Even Stephen Ireland (player of the year 08-09) has had less opportunity.

Richard Dunne is living proof that when it comes to football reasons, being at the heart of Villa is a better place to be than on the periphery at Manchester City.

But Man City's 100m outlay on players over the summer, may increase their chances of winning something, in the coming season, even if it would seem that its a year or two too early for the Premiership title, it would seem likely that one of the cups, would not be beyond them.

And even the most cynical of fans could not deny, that an extra million in the bank and a winners medal in his sock-draw, would amount to a very good year indeed for James Milner.

When expressed in those terms, its hard to deny the attraction for any player, never mind our Jimmy.

So, I expect a tearful goodbye-ee and a bitter welcome back on his return.



But as ever, the fans will have to put up with all the boring stuff from the club and player, as each attempts to exonerate themselves from being blamed for the departure.

As a pro it is de rigueur for the player to deny that money has anything to do with it, and the club has to play out the pretence in the media, that they are not a 'selling club' and that they don't see getting 24m for James Milner, as a good bit of business. The fans know that if James Milner was not interested in money, he would have chosen a career in cricket instead (he was a good player), and that Lerner's available lucre is a little bit less than the owners of Manchester City, or SW6's favourite oligarch.

All the fans want to see, and pretty quickly, is the Milner fee get re-invested in the squad, and preferably with a little extra added, to compensate them for hurt feelings and thwarted expectations.

Except for the doolally and the demented, the fans know that when an owner with $26bn enters the game, suddenly the guy holding a billion dollars, starts to look poor.

Anyone who can't see that, has probably got a bullet in the head.



Keep the faith!
Win FREE pizza with Vital Football!
Select your team and get 50% off if they score twice.
www.papajohns.co.uk/football

Writer:Steve Wade
Date:Saturday July 24 2010
Time: 3:15PM

Comments

0
A well thought out, amusing piece!! Expect to get villified by the doomsayers imminently! will be glad when this saga is over and we have the new players in that are neccessary for another season of improvement...UTV!!
Kuffit
24/07/2010 15:41:00
0
Superb article. I'm looking forward to Milner leaving and the subsequent reinvestment personally. Milner's isn't doing anything that any other human being wouldn't do, and we'd be foolish not to accept any offer over 25m. My big worry is that Citeh will turn to Arteta instead and we'll have missed a big opportunity.
coeur_de_lion
24/07/2010 16:09:00
0
Great post, entertaining piece. As much as i'd like to think milner's staying would do a great deal in bringing unity to the team going into a season with a few expectations, an unhappy player is never going to play quite the same... If only MON's transfer window method left me a bit more confident in the re-investment!!
serbanz
25/07/2010 11:39:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Aston Villa Articles

Black Uses The Word Outstanding

Caretaker manager Eric Black has described the efforts of the players in the loss to Watford as outstanding.

Audio - Black On Outstanding Watford Performance

Caretaker manager Eric Black has hailed the players for being 'outstanding' in their efforts against Watford today, and for showing the correct will to win.

Stats: Watford v Villa

All the stats from Watford (3) vs (2) Villa, Vicarage Road, 30/4/16 Att: 20,653

Watford v Aston Villa - Team Sheets

Aston Villa are at Watford today, this is a 3pm kick-off - the line-ups have been confirmed.

Archived Vital Villa Articles

Vital Villa articles from

Site Journalists

J P Fear
Editor email
Profile
Mike Field
Editor email
Profile
Steve Wade
no email
Profile
Villa_Grizzly
no email
Profile
Turkish Penguin
no email
Profile
Glensider
no email
Profile
Chris Heath
no email
Profile
M Calucar
no email
Profile
JuanPablo Angel
no email
Profile

Current Poll (see more polls)

Watford MotM
Suggested By: Site Staff
Bunn5%
Clark52%
Lescott0%
Toner4%
Hutton4%
Westwood4%
Gana0%
Bacuna4%
Cissokho0%
Ayew23%
Gestede4%
Sub - Sanchez0%
Sub - Sinclair0%
ScoopDragon Premier League Network Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Leicester City 35 22 10 3 76 30
2 Spurs 35 19 12 4 69 39
3 Arsenal 36 19 10 7 67 25
4 Man City 35 19 7 9 64 32
5 West Ham 35 15 14 6 59 17
6 Man Utd 34 17 8 9 59 12
7 Liverpool 34 15 10 9 55 13
8 Southampton 35 15 9 11 54 12
9 Stoke 36 13 9 14 48 -14
10 Chelsea 34 12 11 11 47 7
11 Everton 35 10 14 11 44 6
12 Watford 35 12 8 15 44 -6
13 WBA 36 10 11 15 41 -14
14 AFC Bournemouth 36 11 8 17 41 -20
15 Swansea 35 10 10 15 40 -15
16 Crystal Palace 36 10 9 17 39 -10
17 Newcastle 36 8 9 19 33 -25
18 Sunderland 35 7 11 17 32 -18
19 Norwich 35 8 7 20 31 -26
R Aston Villa 36 3 7 26 16 -45
Write for Vital Football
Latest F1 News
2016 Russia GP - Race
Latest Vital Boxing News
Hughie Fury Wins After Cut Stops Fight
The Vital Football Members League

Recent Aston Villa Results (view all)

Aston Villa Fixtures (view all)

May 7 2016 3:00PM : Newcastle United (H)
Barclays Premier League
May 15 2016 3:00PM : Arsenal (a)
Barclays Premier League

Vital Members League Table

RankNamePoints
1.Pride of Lions43
2.sirdennis9
3.villasince677
4.1958Villan6
5.DeanoVilla6
6.The Fear6
7.distefano5
8.JW854
9.Erod3
10.kefkat3
Vital Football Comment