Vital Villa Interviews 2012: Stephen Jay Hawkings
1) When did you become a Villa fan and why?
Not really sure to be honest, I think it was around when Tony Cascarino joined because he was my favourite Irish player at the time, I must have been around 7 years old, it's a blurry memory but I stuck with them!
2) Paul Lambert? Your opinion please?
For me it was between Lambert and Martinez, so I'm delighted that we got one of them. He seems to have learned a lot from his time in Germany, he comes across as a very intelligent and stern manager and won't suffer fools gladly. Apparently he's very tactically astute, I read a great report from when Norwich beat Swansea last season, where he had Rodgers completely baffled by changing formation 3 or 4 times. So that's 6 points from Liverpool next season then! But overall I'm very happy to have him as our manager.
3) Best and worst moments of last season?
Best moment was beating Chelsea 3-1 at Stamford Bridge. How we pulled that off in context of the rest of the season is puzzling.
Worst moment was from the time McLeish was appointed to the time McLeish was sacked.
4) Your opinion of Randy Lerner and the board, can a decent season next season make up for last season?
My opinion of Randy and the board went down big time after last season, I just couldn't see what they were thinking. But getting rid of McLeish right after the end of the season was the first step towards winning us back, especially after fears that he would stay on. Appointing Lambert is another big step, and if he can loosen the purse strings just a bit for a player or two, Randy and Co. will be back in my good books.
5) Which player/s should Villa sign this summer?
Depends on whose let go really, but I'd go for a centre back, a left back, a solid midfielder, a right winger and a striker. Names? Hard to say, I'd like to see a few surprises from the continent and wouldn't be unhappy with Holt who could just be a replacement for Heskey. But also we have good young talent and it should be utilised. Should be interesting.
6) Which player/s should Villa get rid of this summer?
I can't really say, anyone who isn't pulling their weight or is being a troublemaker or is just downright crap will be let go I'm sure, but with a new manager maybe some of the obvious suspects can be re-born as good players. I'd give them all one more season to prove themselves and that's it. I'm running out of patience with 'prospects' like Delfouneso, Delph and Bannan but they should be given another season or two because they're young.
7) Favourite current player?
Stiliyan Petrov, one of the few who always gives his all and never gives any less than 110%. And a thoroughly decent human being. Devastated at what he has to go through at the moment, but I really believe we'll see him back in a Villa jersey soon, and that will be a great day.
8) Favourite all time player/s?
Paul McGrath, Dwight Yorke, Juan Pablo Angel, James Milner, Gareth Barry, Dean Saunders, Tony Daley, Ian Taylor, Stan Petrov and Gabby but I wish he would work on his finishing!
9) What do you expect us to do/finish this season assuming a decent transfer window with £25m or so spent?
FA Cup: Quarters
10) You can ask yourself any question you want to about Villa and what is your answer?
Q. What was my first trip to Villa Park like?
A. Fantastic! I traveled over with my mother and sister (who is a Chelsea fan) for Villa vs Chelsea in 1997.
The game itself, Villa lost 0-2, Hughes and Flo for Chelsea, Dwight Yorke (my favourite player at the time) had an absolute nightmare and missed a penalty. The result didn't matter much though, it was all about the experience.
11) Just to change the theme slightly, a snap shot of you outside of football, answer or ignore at your leisure: (based on our WHO ARE YOU thread!!!)
a) which celebrity/s would you most like to meet and why?
I'd like to meet Chris Cornell, I'm a big Soundgarden fan, one of my favourite singers ever. Also I'd like to meet Diora Baird for obvious reasons! Hubba hubba!
b) age 29
c) location Location: Dublin, Ireland
d) Favourite alcoholic drink: Red Wine
e) Favourite non-alcoholic drink: Orange juice
f) Favourite Film: Seven, The Shawshank Redemption, Terminator 2, Goodfellas
g) Favourite TV Show: The Wire, Twin Peaks, The X Files, The Sopranos, Game of Thrones
h) Music?: Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Carcass, Clutch, Alice In Chains, Joy Division, Helmet, Bad Religion, Propagandhi, Dead Can Dance, Manics, R.E.M, Talking Heads, Tool I could go on all night....
i) Best ever moment in your life: coming across a game called Daggerfall in 1996 and loving it. It was the second in the series of which Skyrim is the latest. I need to get out more. Or I could just play some more Skyrim...
j) Ambitions: Music. I play and write music in a band, and really hope to release an EP this summer
k) Wise words: 'I left in love, in laughter, and in truth and wherever truth, love and laughter abide, I am there in spirit'. Bill Hicks 1961 - 1994
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