It has been a miserable season for Aston Villa and their battle with confidence is like the frustrations of Hercules. Hercules initially failed to slay the Hydra as each time he decapitated one snake’s head another two sprang up in its place. So it is with Aston Villa. When one confidence problem is solved another kind appears.

A confident performance against West Ham was cancelled out two days later with mental melt down at Carrow Road.

The only thing that has remained consistent at Aston Villa is lack of belief which is turning ‘good enough’ players into shadows. Or are they just not good enough full stop? Remi Guarde says that they are .. “I don’t think my players are not good enough to win games, some of my players are not playing with confidence and then you make technical mistakes”

The unavoidable truth is that Aston Villa doesn’t play well under pressure and being able to respond to pressure is essential to winning games. From what I have seen, they are too frightened of the scoreboard. Let me explain.

Mental frailty means that whether they are in the lead, a goal behind or level at 0-0, nerves destroy any advantage Villa has. They don’t just wilt under stress they actually create their own.

Villa fans are familiar with their team playing the first half timidly. With teams lacking in confidence, fear of conceding a goal inhibits actually playing to win. It is a case of ‘playing not to lose’ syndrome. Whilst this inhibiting behaviour isn’t uncommon, it is a huge problem.

Similarly, when teams play to hold onto a lead, play becomes overly cautious. At Norwich Villa went a goal down and this instantly changed the mind-set and their performance. The solution is to stay in the present. What are we talking about here?

Staying in the present or the process is used by sports psychologists to help concentration and block out anxiety. By staying in the present they focus on themselves and what they need to do: not on what they have just done, their team members have done, what the score is or what the opposition has done.
Not staying in the present means the ‘what ifs’ creep in and the revisiting of past failures. Anxiety takes hold easily when the mind is under siege by what ifs eg ‘what if we lose…..what if I play badly ……..what if I make a fool of myself…’

This is why coaches from the legendary Vince Lombardi to rugby world cup winner Clive Woodward have used the ‘don’t look at the scoreboard principle’ This keeps the players in the present and involved in the process of the game putting thoughts of the score aside.

Villa players need to adopt this to remain in a more positive mind-set throughout the game and not distracted by the fear of failure. If the opposition score then Villa need a strategy to keep their focus on the next kick, next tackle and the now. They should grab the ball straight back out of the net to get on with winning the game.

To help block out the distractions, sportsmen use Performance Statements or triggers to haul themselves back into the present and ignore what has gone before. Andy Murray writes down simple performance statements to keep him focussed on the game and to stop himself losing emotional control if he fluffs a shot.

Being one goal down is no catastrophe, particularly when you have another 60 mins of the game left. You see a totally different reaction from a team high in confidence. At the beginning of the season Leicester didn’t get going in the game until they were two goals down. Far from letting their heads drop, they seemed to relish the challenge having the optimistic belief that‘you score two we can score three’.

The Norwich game was a cruel blow as for once, Aston Villa started very positively and were controlling the game. But how this changed, when they allowed the score line to affect their in the moment performance.

Another symptom shown by Villa is the lack of awareness of what is happening elsewhere on the pitch. The tendency to only look up when they have the ball. They should be looking around the pitch deciding what spaces can be used and where the threats are. Narrow vision goes hand in hand with nerves and anxiety.

The Villa defence is often caught out due to lack of visual awareness. Diving into unnecessary tackles is another. Visual awareness can be improved by developing better habits throughout the game and practising peripheral vision exercises off the pitch.

It is no surprise to hear Remi Garde admit that he has never worked with a bunch of players so lacking in confidence. We know success breeds confidence even if it has been in short supply at Villa Park. But the players mentality can improve; they have the right manager behind them now. He understands there is more to it than just ‘manning up’. You can’t underestimate the pressure of playing in front of 35,000 people when you are bottom of the Premier League.

Emphasis on team solidarity and togetherness over the individual will help players gain a tougher collective mentality. Teams who survive against the odds have great team spirit and belief. The most important thing is that they keep on believing. As Remi Garde says:

“I will be the last man who won’t believe that we can win the next game. I’m still confident”

Oh and stop looking at the scoreboard – Remember Hercules overcame the Hydra in the end!

Jenny Truman is a Sports Performance Coach. Her website is available via the following link –
www.jtperformancecoaching.co.uk

Comments 213

  1. An excellent article Jenny, and right on the Button. Remi could do worse than have you at VP.

    I think you should drop him a line, and send him this article and cv…The worst that can happen is a no, anything is possible beyond that.

  2. Thank you Paul , that’s very kind 🙂
    I wrote this article before today’s game . Interesting that the neutrals are saying that the first 30 mins today we were the better team similar to when we played against Norwich. The goal even came at a similar time – the 30 mins mark and the response again, panic and collapse . There is a pattern .

  3. I think any team who haven’t won for 19 games are going to struggle with confidence Matt and this does make players perform differently – or anyone for that matter . I can’t say what their commitment levels are and you may be right . My theory is that they’re not playing badly until we go behind . This does suggest that they’re not mentally resilient . Pressure invites bad decision making , panic and has physical effects like tending up etc. Some players like Rudi look like they are finding it difficult . Look how he played at Blackburn .

  4. Jenny
    Big Sam outthought remi today as nearly every manager he has faced
    Big Sam team talk let them get to edge of box Hutton fire in useless cross one after another hit on counter when Hutton goes awol per normal he Hutton wasn t AWOL just backed off to give free shot on goal
    Halftime big Sam
    Hold them they push at us but don’t worry not use his subs till its to late,we get our goal and back off ,guzan lets one at near post again and then the comedy show with guzan centre attraction as usual
    All clubs have to sit back wait for villa go AWOL at the back and score and in remi garde matches in charge we have got worse and look at opposition he starting to make Sherwood look like a genius

  5. Jenny
    Not getting at you just sick watching villa listening to lies from everybody from Mon left all yes men taking the p*ss and fox is starting to look the worst ever
    Every decision he has made is worse than last one

  6. Jenny,

    I admire the time and thought put into this piece although I feel you could have condensed it to “Villa are cr*p”.
    I awoke at 7 this morning in South Australia to see another depressing result it does not matter how far I travel I still cannot avoid reading about the plight of our club, forget about the team we all know now that this will become the worst in our history.
    The bigger picture is that the club are in free fall run by people who do not have a clue how to run a major sporting institution, worse than that is they do not care about what happens to AVFC and are all happy to collect their big fat salaries.
    Can anyone explain to me how Lerner sits and watches these idiots burn tens of millions of pounds of his money without taking any action, the man is a fool of the highest order.
    We have seen some dark times at B6 but I truly feel the worst is yet to come.
    A Happy New Year to all at AVL from across the pond.
    GSAVFC

  7. Good to see you back SWV . You could say that but you could also look for the reasons why . I’m not that naiive to think it’s down to just confidence either . It’s an article , (admittedly written prior to today’s game) which offers an alternative discussion point to the “we are cr*p , the players are cr*p ” .

  8. Hello Jenny.
    Thank you for writing a good article, which in general is true. Unfortunately, it looks as though 2016 will see Villa relegated, probably dead last. They’re not up to it. Management have mucked the club around for far too long in the name of saving a few million, which was a great risk, now they’re going to lose a lot more than a few million.

  9. when randy bought villa it cost him 64m for ground training ground plus squad of players ie mellborg bouma laursen barry baros angel think now he will have to pay someone to take villa of his hands no improvement villa park squad lets see guzan hutton richardson richards westwood gabby zog some on long contracts s**t squad

  10. I really cannot believe what I have just seen, that once more a very poorly organised back four, especially Richards, Mutton and Lescott, along with a clown for a goalkeeper has once more destroyed the team’s confidence.

    I do not want to see Richards or Mutton in a Villa shirt again making simple schoolboy errors. Let’s put Bennett at right back, as he cant be any worse, and bring back Okore. It must be time for Bunn to have a run….

  11. Hi Trinity
    Thank you . The article was written more as a response to Remi Guarde’s statements about confidence mid week. I agree we can’t get enough points now as to do so would be champions league form .

  12. Just read on my facebook that Matt is on the BBC tomorrow . Could be a remake of the tellitubies as it seems Swv . Steamer and Mark is involved too . Bit of light entertainment then .

  13. great article Jen, anxiety or just good old fight or flight response we tend to run a way once we concede and the defenders play as if they are going to concede any how, they don’t close players down and make rash decisions. Guzans pass to Cissoko was as you say his peripheral vision shutting down to focus him to fight whats in front of him pure panic, the same panic that makes a player pull a shot as his mucles react to a different mind pattern at work than the one he’s practised 10,000 times, exactly why Gardes sessions are simple and repetitious.

    When you see the reaction to the 6 pointer games you can see its crippling them except for Ayew, he’s the one bright light the others are in some sort of mass hypnosis.

  14. Tigers woods is an interesting Athlete, top of his game he gets caught out cheating and his hero status is gone. His mindset crippled him to the point of injuring his back, instead of a an easy swing his muscles tightened and ping injuries turned up. He really has never recovered that all conquering view he had of himself.

  15. St 75 🙂 🙂 trust you !

    Thanks Mark – yes anxiety and yes the fight or flight response all involved .
    Although this article written before today , that third goal illustrates how stress affects decision making (Bacuna’s misplaced throw in ) and awareness – Sissokho – and the rest of the defence . When you are under pressure your vision narrows – and widening your vision not only gives you important visual information it also lowers the heart rate so is good on both aspects
    There also the “reacting to past mistakes’ mentality which is another problem we have .
    I just spoke to Frem on Twitter who has just got back , exhausted and he observed we went so much more defensive when they scored . The wrong reaction but not unexpected given our position and mentality .
    Tiger Woods : great example of the mind sabotaging the game . I have recently coached a golfer – it’s all about focusing on doing it right / not the obstacles .

    Who could disagree with God . They are frightened to defend – it’s panic , they’re coming into our third – you can almost feel it !
    .

  16. Just read about the impact of next season tv deal……we are f**ked. I though we were down ages ago but i thought we would bounce back.

    Its turning out the players have no fight or care and the manager not up to task.

    So we need a new owner, board, manager and pretty much new team. If we dont get back in the prem first time of trying we are done for. Watford and bornemouth will be light years ahead of us this time next year!!

  17. Paul – got to say that the teams I originally thought would drugged have pulled off some surprising results . Who’d have thought Norwich would beat Saints . Watford have been much better than expected . I thought Bournmouths injuries would kill them off too.

  18. The difference is that they have the bond of togetherness, which we lack, as do the big sides around us that are struggling like the Utd’s , Chelsea and Newcastle. Sam is gradually building it at Sunderland, like Pullis has at WBA.

  19. Jenny, a really interesting article and I’m sure weve all felt some of the innate human reactions you’ve described. When confident, stress can bring also about a different, more determined reaction in some people and I thought that we saw that against Arsenal and Newcastle. We bossed the second half of those games despite going behind.
    I thought for the first time yesterday we saw some panic from the manager. Throwing on all your attacking players and ‘going for it’ had the opposite effect to the desired one as, unlike the Newcastle and arsenal games we were then unable to control the game. It may have pleased some fans in the short term but it didn’t feel true to the more ‘ considered’ approach we’ve tended to see from him in previous games

  20. When Garde came to us you could sense the self assured confidence of the man. Heck, you’d have to have that to take on the challenge at Villa park! The next few months are going to be a bigger test for Remi Garde than anyone . . . . and I include us fans in that.
    I hope he has the inner strength to keep focussed on the longer term objectives of the team.
    Let’s face it, we’re going to be playing Championship football next season so Remi can now start to think longer term and treat the rest of this season as ‘Championship pres-season’.
    There are individual targets for this season still, such as beating Derby’s 11 point ‘low point’ , after all , which player wants to be forever associated with ‘that’ record, but he needs to do whatever he can to stay calm and focussed and realise that there are still very important longer term objectives to be achieved for this club. . . . next season is now the most important season . . . not this one.

  21. Every manager has his own style. Some are great at the short term motivational approach ( Nigel Pearson anybody) but as the Leicester Board so cleverly identified he was not the man for the longer term building that they were looking for. Sherwood probably fits a similar mould. He worked well for us last season, but that sort of ‘gung ho bluster’ can only work short term if not backed up by a longer term philosophy. Tim Sherwood had realised some time ago that he wasn’t up to the job and started getting his excuses in early.
    In Remi Garde we have a man who built steadily within Lyon and worked wonders with the youth and then senior teams. He must be feeling huge pressures now but for the sake of the club ( and himself) I hope he has the inner strength to see beyond the immediate pressures and concentrate on making sure that he builds a playing philosophy and squad of players that can bring us back up from the Championship next season and show that they can then compete again in the Premiership.
    As Jenny points out in her article it’s important not to panic and lose peripheral vision. In the case of the manager, this is especially difficult, particularly as his role is so high profile. He needs to motivate the players to perform week in week out but mustn’t lose sight of the longer term objective of building a squad of players that can adopt his playing philosophy and ‘want’ to go out and perform for the manager and Aston Villa every week.

  22. The next few months are going to be tough for the fans too. I felt for Frem when he talked of emigrating, partially to get away from Aston Villa. Trouble is Frem, they’re in your blood now and they follow you (or you follow them) wherever you are.
    Remi Garde has it in him to build a very successful team and squad. I hope the fans and (more importantly) management give him the time and support to enable him to do just that.

  23. Honestly think r0bb0 if Remi was part of the solution he’d have won a couple of games by now. I’m surprised Tom Fox is giving long term assurances to a manager who is yet to win a game for him.

  24. Hi Robbo , fantastic well thought out post , particularly the comparison in management styles . Remi looked truly in pain yesterday. Peoples genuine emotions are found in their facial expressions , not just in touch line heroics . You are right,he is going to have to muster all his inner strength to survive the rest of the season mentally . The fans frustrations are wholly understandable, particularly the ones who made the 9 hour coach trip . We have the best away fans in the country – as acknowledged by other clubs supporters. Frem says they never stopped singing and chanting for the full 90mins. How hard is that when for 60 mins another inevitable loss is lurking.

    But , i was very sad to hear that the fans had booed and jeered the villa players onto the bus . From the perspective of building confidence and solidarity , this is a massive backwards step . How are these players going to feel thr next time they step on a pitch . Are they going to want to fight for the fans or will they be checking their release clauses to see how quickly they can get away . There may be players who need to move on but for the younger players showing potential then this could be the tipping point . I know many will disagree with the “why shouldn’t they boo” argument but even leaving the horrible crowd bullying connotations aside , its counter productive.
    I know emotions are high , I appreciate the fans feel let down but turning on the players is futile and unpleasant . No matter how high they are paid , they are human too .

  25. Hi Matt G : I can fully understand where you are coming from. The longer it continues the more difficult it to win. That first win of the season seems so long ago now.

  26. Matt, unlike Sherwood, Garde has already proven elsewhere that he has it in him to be a good manager but he’s going to need time. We’ve played some good football under him but have lacked the killer instinct in front of goal ( lowest shots on target to goals ratio of any team in the premiership). Gestede could (should?) have won us 6 points in recent weeks . . . . I won’t blame the manager for that.
    He has taken on an incredibly difficult job. . . . he has it in him to make it work . . . We need to give him time to grow into the club.
    The alternative is that we change managers yet again and we all know how that works out

  27. Jenny,
    Excellent, agree with PP that someone with your qualifications is urgently needed at VP.
    I have a high regard for Remi and much prefer his footballing ideals to the usual British kick and rush but he has absolutely no chance of being a success at VP. I won’t say he’s lost the changing room, he never had it, the players just don’t give a damn about anything other than their contracts.
    It looks like the skirmish that Fox initiated with the fan clubs has escalated into open warfare, not only is he crepe at his job, no-one likes him and no-one wants him anywhere Villa Park, so take my advice Tom, either p*ss off or take self defence lessons.
    Lerner is another matter, he’s like a kid with a new toy, after a while he loses interest and looks for another play thing, not the sharpest and without a scrap of decency or respect.
    Its rare that you get so many things wrong in a football club, at VP EVERYTHING is wrong and things are going to get worse while Lerner, Fox & co remain but when 30,000 + turn up every other week it glosses over the problems in the mind of our ‘custodian’. The easy way to protest is to stay away, if you can’t resist your machochistic leanings then at least be bothered to demonstrate your displeasure at the destruction of the club you love because as it stands it isn’t going to be around much longer.

  28. Social media is full of Sunderland fans praising our support but not one player could be bothered to acknowledge them, i couldn’t give a ff if every one of the useless t**ts was booted.

    That throw in of Bacuna’s was just unbelievable, pure farce.

  29. What Fox is saying is that if we finish the season on 8 points Remi will still be manager, interesting theory but like everything he says its both a lie and BS, i’d urge Villans to go to the AVST AGM and give him hell because the planks in that organisation don’t have the goolies to ask the hard questions.

  30. Steamer, I can’t see that staying away from games is the answer. Firstly, most fans just can’t help themselves. . . . you don’t want to miss the thrill of being there when we finally win a game and are quite irrationally prepared to go through all that avoidable pain prior to that!
    Secondly, if attendances dropped to say 20,000 then it would only make about £4m difference in income between now and the end of the season. Bearing in mind we blew that each year for several years on Bent’s salary alone. . . we spent £1m on having Illori on our books, almost that amount on Gabby this year alone. . . .

  31. Hi Steamer and thank you.

    I’m sorry to bang the same drum but the throw in demonstates the mentality the players are operating in. Bacuna – desperate attempt to compete the throw in – where were the players , finding space , getting free or hiding. There was no one free to throw to . As Paul McGrath said , the defenders are frightened to defend and no-one wants the ball : result – no one to throw to.

    I agree the players should go and clap the away fans – it’s been something that hasn’t happened for a long time . Maybe they couldn’t face the abuse they jnew they were going to get ?

    Guzan is coming in for his fair share of criticism : not surprising given our goals conceded record. But, he was regarded by many as not only our best player but the main reason we stayed up in Lambert’s first season . He was picked as one of the best keepers in the premier league by neutrals too.
    He was once an excellent keeper – he can be again if he had the right mind set surely .

  32. Agree Jen about Guzan, i really rated him but i think he’s shot, he doesn’t learn from his errors (ie the Cissoko pass ), he’s just costing us too many goals and points.

  33. Andy Gray’s son says that Fox told his Dad that the moneyball system dictated the signings made pre-season, Sherwood didn’t get a veto. Another lie from Fox.

  34. I have just had a message asking if l want to go to that meeting and all l have to do is pay a £5 minimum anual fee . I couldnt trust myself as you can bet fox will just lie through his teeth . If you fancy it go onto their website and join . I did think the non shaking of hands after the game and the excuse given was pathetic .

  35. We all know that the moneyball approach is how Tim was asked to work, There is no way he got suddenly told, he may however of had more say to start with and wanted to many expensive prem
    players wages wise. The points mute anyhow as His picks are no better and IMO worse than the boards. I suspect we only got Richards because of promises made of his starting position. The main point is Tim would of shaped the squad in terms of what he wanted , Bunn for example was probably a choice from parkes his coach.

    This is the mess Tim left for Garde a divided squad with Mr divisive gabby as team captain (what a joke thanks tim) Garde knows he has a limited set of players with which to work we are that poor,
    The Foreign lads seem to have flourished under him the Brits have been less accepting and the bigger problem despite Tims rhetoric to the contrary.

    As to why Garde has played the team he has? first goal Hutton has two men attacking him tracked by ??? (should of been gil) compounded by Richards arriving late into the box and covering the goal and Guzans view instead of helping Hutton who felt he couldn’t close his man down due to the extra man out wide. To Garde this is totally puzzling as these players are supposed to be prem experienced professional footballers yet have no bottle and little grasp on the game. They are with us because they were not wanted elsewhere. Leicester have built in a similar way (cast offs ) but with a manager pearson who had a better eye for a player to suit his plan ( which as far as I have seen garde has both of these attributes).

    Any manager would struggle with this team, there’s a lot of anger because we haven’t managed a win under Garde but he’s been close. Injuries and suspensions put paid to our revival against Newcastle and wet spam going further plus the usual gaffs in defence since Richards return and lescotts demotion from captain. To make it worse as has been noted we are turning on the team and Garde, the short sited rubbish being spouted by fans is painful and will end any chance we have sooner rather than later. I hate what Villa have become but its not the players or managers fault and we all know that.

  36. Morning Lifers.a very good piece as ever Jen.
    Being a dull sod ,I have nothing new to add.What I would like to add though,is that I am looking to the future now.Garde is not an idiot,and he has one eye on next season.Aston Villa will be back,with or without the current regime.It would be preferable if they were ousted though.Aston Villa are not Lerner and Fox,we have a distinguished 142 years of history which Lerner is urinating on right now(metaphorically of course).This does not mean I am oblivious to our troubles,it`s just been done to death.Selling good players and replacing them with inferior players has finally caught up with us.
    VTID.

  37. Sorry fellow bloggers
    The players where lucky it was only booing they got,they have to be the biggest bunch of yellow spineless gutless cowards ever to take the field
    Guzan run out of words to describe how useless he has been this last 18 months what does he have to do to be dropped the pass in injury time to sissko crazy clear the f**king ball
    Hutton same as above and what was garde doing playing him as winger start second half he was playing ahead of bacuna in right winger role and he stinks there to Adams got to byline crossed we scored Hutton cross from edge of box till the edge of box where rudi has no chance
    Richards conman chanced shut his mouth move to right back or f**k off with gabby zog
    Grealish at least look like you care try break some sweat and not at disco villa fan my are
    Rudi we know you are not good enough but try work a bit break sweat make tackles blocks everything your not doing
    Remind picked them all
    Sissko lescott vertout Adams kozak done OK
    Bacuna gana need to do more

  38. JG- you can call them what you like but are you telling me we managed to pick 25 cowards?? little unlikely don’t you think? The situation at villa park has been like a runaway train you could level the same at all the players since mon left surely?

  39. Excellent comments from MK and Robbo, and now the time really has come for all of us to be counted, and give Remi our support, whatever you feel about Lerner, Tom Fox , or some of the players.

    The task may appear impossible. but if Remi can mould eleven players together for rest of the season, who believe in him, Aston Villa and themselves, then there is a slim chance we can survive, but if not, we can go down fighting, and win the FA cup….we still have that left to fight for, and we almost got there last season….Maybe Remi is the man to succeed….!!!

  40. PP- Its a shame we had so many injuries suspension when we did, 1 or 2 wins and the press is off our backs we get 2-4 quality players in and who knows. It does seem the footballing gods are against us this season but the harder you work the luckier you get.

  41. PP
    Don’t do it to yourself mate, the hope will kill you, put down whatever happy juice you are sipping, we are relegated my friend and as for the FA Cup, if we beat Wycombe it will be an upset.
    We now have to prepare for missing out on £120m in TV revenue next season plus reduced sponsorship, ST sales, Merchandise match day revenue sales etc etc a total of roughly £150m down on what we should have been getting. We have to start looking in January for players that will get us back up at the first attempt( which is an extremely difficult task, given who looks like dropping with us) from a league that devours premier league has beens.
    The questions are A) Are Fox and Lerner staying to ensure we actually go bust and definitely relegate us next season?? B) Will there be any funds to re build what is the worst squad I have ever seen? C) Is Remi Garde the man to oversee our return, given his 0% win record and the way he has done nothing to halt the slide only speed it up? D) If not who is?
    Whatever happens we need route and branch change, and a f**king good clear out from the top to the bottom, no one should be safe from the axe as collectively from the owner to the Ceo , transfer committee, players, coaching staff and managers have all been utter s**te

  42. Mark k
    Agree we don’t have 25 cowards mind you not far off it
    Also it’s a runaway train with Lerner driving it
    A couple questions for some of youse where is all the debt from has Randy being siphoning money for him self yes Mon spent plenty but also downing milner young delph plus others took fair wack back Lambert said his signings were less than stated plus some were on 10 thousand a week
    We had been fighting relegation for 4/5 years and sold two players bent benteke goals kept us up yet Lerner thought about 5/9 m was good enough to improve us only thing Lerner’s good at is hiring clowns and not funny ones

  43. Well after the must win games against toon, watford, nowich and sunderland all faith in remi has gone. Our defence has got worse and he has added nothing since his appointment. Some strange decisions and the main one imo not hardly using gill. Just play him in the no 10 roll and let him get on with it. Constantly playing sinclar or richardson is mental.

    I supppose nothing matter though until randy has been removed.

  44. Seriously looking at the signings too. Crespo has gone missing, illori sent packing. Amavi had rave reviews but still a lot to learn, he made some terrible mistakes. Vertout looks tidy but what sort of midfielder is he, an enforcer or assist and goals or carrick type? Gana want s to be anywhere other than vp and affter a rocky start ayew is the only one coming into his own. Richards needs to try rb or be dropped. Gestede makes heskey look like cavani. Adama no doubt has a lot to learn but we have not really given him a chance, just comes off the bench for 10 mins. How can we judge. Imo he needs to be told he is def starting the next 3 or 4 games make the shirt yours. And all that for 40 odd mill. Its soul destroying. Watched the spurs everton game and we are sooooooo far behind them its not funny. Besic a young midfielder for toffess came on and done more in a 20 min cameo than any mid for villa in last 5 years

  45. Watched Everton v Spurs , remember when we believed we were on par and direct competition to those, now we are fighting it out with the likes of Brentford, Walsall etc. Garde and the players had the fixtures to turn our season around, with games against direct relegation rivals, but they f**ked it up. We didn’t win a single game, in fact we never looked like getting a result, did we even take the lead in a single match, we have conceded 17 goals and scored 6 under RG, taking 4 pts from 27, I havent included the Spurs debacle when he was sat in the stand and KM picked the side. We have looked dire, as poor as under TS maybe even poorer at times. I know this isn’t his squad, but if we go until the end of the season only winning 1 or 2 more games, or worst case none, what qualifies him to oversee a season of such importance next year??? Lyon in a poor league is a completely different proposition to the relentless physical championship

  46. Absolutely agree, Jenny. Great piece.

    I, too, thought we’d beat Sunderland, but that was tempered by the suspensions, most important being Ayew.

    But for the last few years, Villa have been bereft of confidence. I think for brief, shining moments Delph and Benteke were able to provide some, with the rest of the squad feeling they had players who could make a difference.

    I’ve spent yesterday and today in mourning, really. If we could get in a player or two that instill belief and refuse to lose, we could perhaps make a show of it. But even I, an eternal optimist, have pretty much given up all hope. I slept in yesterday after a couple of very late New Year’s type night, checked the score, turned to my Jenny, and said, “That’s it. We’re down.”

    But back to Jenny’s original point: I don’t think we have “cowards”, but I do think we have a squad bereft of confidence, and it shows in all the ways Jenny pointed out. The thing that disappoints me is that the players are succumbing to fear instead of looking to themselves and saying “I won’t be afraid. I can control my performance, my effort and I refuse to lose.”

    I think anyone who has played has experienced that feeling at least once, if they’re honest. Me, I know I got scared at times. I just fought it off as best I could by doing the simple things: running, tackling, fighting, doing something, anything to cut the other guys down a peg and try to be someone the other players knew they could count on.

    But of course, over more than one or two games, it takes 11 players believing in each other. When you feel deep in your bones that not everyone is on the same page, you start to wonder why you’re bothering.

  47. I think I’ve calmed down a bit.

    First, 3 thousand fans traveled to watch them wankers and were amazing. Kept singing all game, but when Sunderland got there second we all had enough. The players deserved what they got. Hope 40 thousand so that at our next home game. Wycome will beat us, and will be great with the fans so cloe to pitch this time.

    Team selection- Was the first time since Remi has been appointed that I was happy with the line up. A shame Ayew was out because I think he would have loved Jack and Gil finding him. They need players to run in behind. Rudy, just awful. I liked the idea of playing two number 10s narrow. The problem comes with Hutton and sissy providing width. Awful players.

    I hope GRde sticks with the two number 10s or otherwise goes to 442.

    Jan- we need a keeper, right back, DM, Remy and another attacker.

    S75- I’m not going to wycome mate. Not even I can be bothered to go to that.

    Will be shock of the round though if we beat wycome

  48. Hello Jenny and all…

    Very nice article – and I seem to recall that you did write to VP, did you not – without the courtesy of any reply. Typical of the so-called “club”.

    Well, what did we have yesterday …

    1. A captain who clearly can’t captain. What example is he setting?
    2. A r-b who’s done a good job people are saying, but has constantly left his flank clear while he’s worrying about what gap Richards has left. Anyway, he’s probably out for a match or two, and I’d be more happy with Bacuna at r-b.
    3. Talking of Bacuna I thought he showed up well at times yesterday … pity about his shooting, but that’s the lack of confidence factor I’d guess.
    4. Grealish – haven’t we seen enough to know by now that he doesn’t have what it takes? Perhaps he’s missing Delph and Benteke.
    5. Traore has averaged about 15 to 20 mins for each sub appearance he’s made, and in that comparative short time (compared to Grealish) has made two goals.

    I actually can’t see what was so wrong with the Okore and Clark combo of last season. Why did they have to be replaced when other positions were in more need of attention. Particularly *proper* replacements for Beneke and Delph.

    However, next week we have Wycombe. Last visit we were 1-3 down at h-t. We won 8-3!

    Good shooting practice for Ayew perhaps? (who I thought we badly missed yesterday).

  49. The other thing I meant to say is that for me, getting myself stuck in was all about giving my mind no time to dwell on anything beyond catching my breath. I also focused on wanting the other side to at least respect me as an opponent when all was said and done. I guess you’d call that pride.

    I remember losing 10-1 when I was about 15. They were all bigger, faster, better. But a single “nice one, mate” from an opponent when I bested him and made a good turn and pass in the box at something like 6-0 down kept me going to final whistle.

  50. JL-

    On Grealish, I think you’re right about missing Benteke. I said at the time when Gabby and Andi were scoring that they were the beneficiaries of Benteke’s presence, the space he created by drawing defenders, and the resulting opportunities. They knew they’d get something to feed off.

    Simply put, we need a talisman.

  51. If remi, fox, or whoever makes signings had a brain they would see we need a spine. Go buy decent gk, cb, cdm, st and build a team around that. After appointing pearson as manager.

    In my dreams im a billionaire, buy villa, sack remi. Get pearson in, use jan to sell as many as the players as poss and in mean time play the kids till end of season giving villa fans discounted tickets and free away travel. In summer get southgate, laursen, mellberg in and around bodmore as coaches.

  52. Jc. We do need a talisman…..we have potential 3 adama, gill and jack but they have been benched! Gill can produce a moment of magic any time…play him.

    Im sure ayew would love playing with him

  53. awesome to see a leader from you Jen you always point your view across so well

    The only thing i would add to your leader is maybe it inst about confidence with vills but more to do with lack of quality

    Don’t want to be too hard on our players as again we played decent football
    The main issue i see is lack of a proficient goal scorer
    apart from out lack of attacking quality -there s no one up top that you are expecting to make something happen when receiving the ball in the final third

    I don’t expect Garde to get get much n the way of support from Randy but a real goal scorer would allow us a much better chance of winning a game

    was clinging on by the finger nails with a bit of hope but that went for sure after Sunderland

  54. B62

    I agree about remi. He is getting off very lightly and getting away with it due to fox and randy.

    10 games without win…..i repeat 10 games! He has failed to get the players onside imo and prob is a massive divide with french v the rest in the dressing room. Allthough i think a manager should be given 2 transfer windows this guy is not the answer sadly and seeing as we are down now might as well use it to our advantage and re build now. Grealish could well do some damage in the champ so play him and def gg who done well at forest.

  55. sorry andrew I don’t see how those three will save us, Gil and grealish anonymous yesterday until grealish came off. Adama manages 2 decent crosses plus 3 that went out for a throw the quality is not there

  56. I reckon if we had tekkers spearheading this team we wouldn’t be bottom and wouldn’t have lost to slumberland #

    Randy Learner – how to destroy an historic club

  57. If we cant be hard on the players now when can we. Grow some balls, get a spine. Never scene such a bunch of loosers in my life. Its not confidence, its because they arent very good at footballers. If we want to go forward as a team and belive we can win a game stop playing richards cb and guzan in goal. Hat will help no end

  58. Its only my opinion but Remi is a very good manager totally unlike anything we have had for years, Its only natural to think someone else would turn it around, personally I don’t think it would of happened, the team has gaping holes in it.

    Get remy in and get him and ayew running in behind, the biggest let down for me Gobby, mr aston villa who could of been a hero playing up with ayew is to fat and useless to be bothered.
    a quality DM and fullback and we have some balance and a structure without that we are pissing in the wind.

  59. Mark

    Gill has the talent to score or assist at any min even if he is having a bad day. I think we have totaly ruined the guy and never given him a proper run to get stronger. I should agree dont play all 3 at same time but then look at sinclair, bacuna gestede and say why not!

  60. The telegraph( I think) has de called it right, no one in the positions of power are qualified to perform those roles at this level, Owner shocking, CEO shocking, Paddy Reilly shocking, Henrick Alstadt shocking, Garde shocking. None of these men have had this role before at this level and none of them are up to it, they called Garde a Frenchman with a charisma by pass. The recruitment in the summer was abysmal as it has been for years, but why do these idiots who know nothing about the game feel they are qualified to recruit players for a once massive sporting institution??? TF is a knob, when at Arsenal he was quoted saying winning( trophies) wasn’t important, it’s all about ‘The Brand’ and selling the club to investors and sponsors!!! The stat man! f**k me any 14 year old on Football manager could do that. They said the lot need to be sacked and the reigns handed over to Moyes, to have a free reign and rebuild from the championship and build a legacy. At last sense, no way will Garde get us back up, he can’t even win a game when fighting for our lives, he is about as inspiring as celery, he will get massacred in the championship, he lacks the depth of knowledge and skill required. Whoever is in charge, needs to have those bell ends on the committee f**ked off out of the way and the owner has to back them, or we will go down again and again just like Leeds did.

  61. MK
    Garde is a yes man, a TF lackey without the skill set for the job he is employed to do, he is only here because of the Arsenal obsession( which we are now the polar opposite of by the way)

  62. B62- so he fluked it at Lyon then? why do people think the championship is so hard? supposedly its about the level of the french div 1 we are told when we buy its players so therefore Garde should be well at home. I respect your view mate but what are your reasons behind It you don’t give any other than he’s not inspiring?

  63. Mark the only conclusion i have about remi is he seems a ok bloke but after refusing big sams hand that may be un gentlemanly! Imo a decent manger would of at least dropped guzan for starters his antics, nervousness, panicking etc is a cancer that spreads throughout the defence. And also the recent must win games has been approached badly espeially home to west spam.

    But your right we are down with him at helm or pearson. Bigger issue is the morons making the decisions. Fingers crossed for massive protests against the board ala charlton. Randy prob dont give a damn but got to show we care

  64. They too thought a French manager could help with their French foreign legion. They hounded out pardew, that went well. And at that time I think they were more stable, in different circumstances he may have been the right choice, but not for this one and not for a promotion push.

  65. People think the championship is hard, because it’s a graveyard for big ex premier league clubs. Forest, Derby, Leeds, Sheff Weds, Hull, Boro, Wolves ( only 7 teams in that league not played in the PL)plenty of clubs struggle when they drop out of the PL, the money is gone and they find it hard especially with their FFP rules, look at Pompey, Leeds , Norwich, Saints and Wolves the decline didn’t stop at one relegation they all dropped again and beyond.
    As for Garde at Lyon, yes he did ok, but they are one of the big boys in a bang average league, he was at home there and still walked away. Your right footballing wise the standard is prob champ level bar a couple of teams, however it’s less physical and not such a challenging schedule with a dog eat dog mentality all chasing the golden egg of the PL. If Sunderland and Newcastle also drop or Swansea our task will be even harder. I honestly feel we will struggle again and most likely will be in another relegation battle, if Garde does stay he will be gone before Christmas when we are looking out of touch with the promotion chasing pack.

  66. Andrew,
    Don’t disagree about those players’ potential…Just don’t know that any of them are talisman material.

    Of the three, and it might sound a bit odd, I think Traore up front, alone or with Ayew, would be a very interesting proposition. Get him running at CBs from a more central position.

  67. Ah mentioned above about moyes….iforgot about him. He wanted the job, and wanted to rebuild us and have full control, fox said no we are in control.

    Kills me. That one decision from knob head fox prob set us back years.

    Championship is hard cause its a relentless battle. Slog it out playing twice a week. I was ok with it until i read about the new tv deal for prem teams. Basically if we dont get promoted straight away teams like west brom, stoke, hell even bornemouth wil be as far away to us as man city are now to us. The money is sick. Bornemoith allready got a deal in place to sign iturbe for 15mill in the summer…….BORNEMOUTH!!!!

  68. Jc

    I really think the 3 players need managing properly and given a proper run. We hava had gill for a few years now and he aint had 3 games on the trot! How is he meant to get going, the lad clearly has more ability tecnique, vision than anyone but sinclair will get picked ahead of him. Granted these type of players tend to go missing even silva gets subbed alot thats why jack, gill and adama playing together is a risk. Would love adama up top. At the end of the day pace and power will cause havoc

  69. Andrew-

    Do understand about giving players a run. I think Garde decided, which I have admit is how I would’ve gone, at least without knowing the inner workings with all the players, etc., that priority one was to just get harder to beat. Fewer goals conceded, fewer goals needed.

    However, we’ve still managed to conceded first virtually as a guarantee. At this point, if there is to be a miracle, there just isn’t time to mold a disciplined unit. We can only escape, and this admittedly would really classify as a miracle (dunno which Saint in the offing will get the credit), by just going for it.

    Gil is the most creative player and you don’t get many goals without creativity. Adama is the most athletically formidable and I think he could cause chaos if he were more centrally involved. Jack can make that all a real handful. I just can’t understand where his work ethic is. It’s hard for me to believe more than one person hasn’t put his arm round Jack’s shoulder and said plainly what it takes to be great….and that he wouldn’t eventually take that on board.

    Can we make our attack overwhelming? Garde seems to have initially thought the answer was no. Dunno if he has a choice but to give it a go now and find out for sure.

  70. JC
    Garde hasn’t made us harder to beat though! And we don’t win games either. I agree TF has set us back years with his transfer policy and appointments, by not appointing Moyes when he wanted the job and seemingly had a sensible alternative to the Tom Fox chaotic fuckball approach

  71. JC- when traore gets the ball centrally he often gets robbed, with the line to his side he can concentrate on driving past, to me it would be a major change for him to play off the shoulder he doesn’t have much thought or finesse.

    B62- the fact he has 4 draws says yes he has made us harder to beat, trouble is we beat ourselves or throw away games when we have the upper hand not exactly what he has in mind. we could sit back as we did against city but we don’t have the pace as Watford and palace do, since gabby is s**te and Sinclair not quick enough. Adama the only other option and he is a p*ss poor footballer, a player like Remy would be the ideal option quick and strong.

    I don’t think moyes would do any different and would have the same language barrier as Tim had. Making us hard to beat would be the first step of any manager only we will not survive like that, Garde in my mind created a solid enough team with the aim of getting at least 6 points from these last 4 games unfortunately circumstances fcuked it up and our players propensity to drop clangers.

  72. Evening all and thank you for your kind and intelligent comments . As I said before , I sent the article to Matt after the Norwich game but he was unable to schedule it. When we lost, I actually messaged Mat and said don’t put it up as I felt it inappropriate given the gravity of our desperate situation post 5 pm Saturday. But it was too late and the article was published. So thank you all for being so restrained and polite in such disappointing times.

    John C – I totally agree, this confidence problem has been running for the last five seasons. I wrote to the club after the WIgan game during Gerard Houllier’s time I listed the confidence problems which were so glaringly obvious – and the same ones are still with us!. We have the worst home form because of this. Also, we have had Benteke, Bent during the GH time, to keep us up.

    John L. Great to see you back John. I also agree with your assessment although I do have a soft spot for Micah – I think he is the most d passionate player on the pitch. I can see why he comes in for criticism but it is almost like he is trying too hard – trying to be all over the pitch – the one man team. This can’t work .
    On Okore John, I thought he was injured.

    B6 Brazil – cheers and you made the excellent point recently that it is bizarre that Remi, a long term prospect has been brought in to fire fight in a relegation scrap.

    James G – Agreed – Guzan’s pass to Sissy was pure madness. But it is as I said in my article “They don’t just wilt under stress they actually create their own.” That was what Bacuna did with his pass and then 3 mins later Guzan did with the crazy 4 yard pass to SIssy. They create their own pressure because when nerves attack you everything speeds up – and your decision making goes hay wire.

    Runtingz – thank you so much 🙂 I agree with you – it is excruciating thinking of our Teckers being ruined at Liverpool – not appreciated by the Liverpool fans – and not fulfilling his potential. I have no doubt that if we had him in the team we wouldn’t be where we are now.

    Steamer 75 – the thought of you and Steamer at the meeting is very amusing 🙂

    B62. Was that article by Matt Law by any chance. He has been very anti AV for some time – printed some very harsh stuff about Lambert (and I was no Lambert fan) and is very much in the Stan Collymore sack them all camp. That’s a valid view point. but saying “Remi has a charisma by pass” is a pretty daft thing to say IMO. Is Wenger Mr Charisma? Pocetino doesn’t strike me as being that charismatic or dynamic and look what he did at Saints and now Spurs. (with an interpreter)

    Andrew – I see your point on the quality – I really do. But saying they aren’t good footballers when they have commanded prices in the region of 10 million is something I can’t get my head round. I think if the team could play with confidence that these players would be considerably better. Again, we miss a dynamic striker like Benteke. When he came back from injury he uplifted the team – he was like the safety blanket. Ayew is proving to be a very good buy – attitude great – winning mentality and he is scoring some good goals. But he doesn’t have the same kudos as Benteke yet.

    Frem, James G, B62, Andrew. I sympathise with your views on the players -I understand the frustration you feel but it fills me with dread to think of VP returning to the hostile cauldren it was when AM was there. When you watched them walk off the pitch yesterday they looked devastated. I was at VP when our win relegated QPR a couple of seasons ago. The QPR players ambled off having a joke with each other . I couldn’t believe it. But the most important thing for me is that I don’t want us to become like Blackpool. Remember the scenes when they were trying to get rid of Ian Holloway. How difficult was it for the players to play under those conditions. It is going to put off new players coming to us if they are playing to a hostile and protesting crowd every week. I remember Harry Redknapp saying that he had never been to such a toxic ground as VP during the McLeish ira. Footballers talk amongst themselves – if the crowd start on them then the word is going to get round that AV is a club to be avoided.

    On Remi’s win rate. He has come in in difficult circumstances and has inherited a team which has been chopped and changed – hasn’t had chance to gel together and were in a relegation scrap. I know that there are other teams built on a shoe string (relatively) who are doing better but there are also teams like Liverpool (squad cost 350 mill) and Man U (cost around the same) who have seriously decorated managers and even they are struggling to pull a win together. Look at how Jurgen Klop was welcomed and over hyped by the media .

  73. If remi wanted us hard to beat and win games then you dont play guzan, hutton, richardson. He is the ne picking guzan every game. It is not poss for bunn to be worse. For me gk is 2nd most important position behind st. I would bet any money on moyes doing better than remi in last 10 games, not hard but the point of having moyes would be knowing he was in control of things instead of fox.

  74. Remi is not going to work because he is foxs yes man. And fox is clueles. The only reason we dont have moyes is he wouldnt work under foxs ways. Which is why we are bottom! I dont want to be too critical of remi though cause he aint the problem really.

    Jenny

    Good piece but im sure footballers know our fantastic away support, best in land. I say fair enough if the atmosphere turns poisonous at vp now…..last 5 years has been restrained really to be fair and we still loose anyhow! The protests etc have to happen to get fox and learner out asap.

  75. Andrew
    Agree with you on garde
    And after reading blogs papers watching Sunday supplement think majority of villa fans want every one in a job whether it fox and cronies down to coaching staff fired get some one in that knows English football.
    The guys on ss ripped Lerner,fox Faulkner apart why because useless
    Garde has had ten matches we are even worse than when he started unreal his team selection match after match is brutal not going to go over names again
    Cowan’s McDonald if we don’t have a keeper 2 full backs better in reserves they should hang their heads in shame
    I don’t know where we go from here but if knobs are still in charge come August we will sink faster than titanic
    One other point Lerner 6 years of hell have lost a generation of villa fans more revenue lost fox think about that

  76. Interesting comments from everyone, which shows the passion and the hurt that everyone is going through, with Villa in the worst position that we have been in for a very long time.

    I am very impressed with Jenny’s perception and ability to reason and discuss the various arguments.

    Remi has not come in and managed to do the short term fix like Tim did, but he had a far better squad to deal with at the time, which was not totally lacking with confidence. To be fair, Lambert had already been through that stage before with the squad.
    I agree that Clark and Okore were ok together, as was Sendeross with them, as well as being a good leader.

    We did not just lose Vlaar, we lost Sendeross and Okore, which then really put us in a poor situation, which is why TS probably concentrated in getting Richards and Lescott, rather than concentrating on other positions.

    Remi has had to accept what he was given, and that includes injuries, level of fitness, and players out on loan, so please allow him a building period, and that includes confidence building as well, having been let down by our most senior players, apart from Hutton, who has given his all, even if his play has not been the best. No-one bothers to back him up most of the time, and he then looks abysmal.
    I still say that we need to back the team and Remi, as the time will come when we can organise ourselves and ensure that the real culprits become aware of the power of a well organised band of supporters rather than a disorganised group of protesters. The time will come when Randy has to face us, or just hand the club back to the fans.


  77. Jenny: “On Okore John, I thought he was injured. ”

    Okore was on the bench, Jenny … with Clark.

    BTW, I’m not really “back”. But I do look at this blog fairly regularly and I of course empathise with the lot of you.

    It’s a hurting process, this past 5 years, and where we are perhaps indicates that our energies are best spent elsewhere … which is why I come in just occasionally.

    The 60s were bad enough but at least when the takeover occurred in 68/69 there was a hugely positive momentum that lasted at least 12 years. This one has crumpled with barely a whimper.

    (Signed) Disgusted of Hodge Hill.

  78. Everyone in football whether Fans, Journo’s, managers or players know that Lerner and Fox are killing AVFC, however, Fox seems to think he is above criticism and is the complete font of footy knowledge, a totally arrogant buffoon.
    To all the folk that think its pointless demonstrating against Fox & co, think back to 1967 when we were two weeks from going bust, pp team, no money, incompetent board, low crowds and dilapidated ground, JL often mentions what a terrible time it was, fortunately we had a small but strong core of diehards who put the old board under pressure, made it uncomfortable for them and forced them to face the facts, Lerner and Fox are by far a bigger problem for AVFC than Buckley and Smith were and yet reading through the blogs some folk still support Lerner, Sherwood and even Lambert, thank the Lord my time is nearly up if this is the best the modern fan can offer.


  79. Steamer: Hello mate. Always nice to know there are one or two about that I can be on the same brainwave with! 🙂

    Paul: You raise some interesting comments. However, I frankly disagree on the c-b replacement issue. While Okore was injured from time-to-time, we did have Senderos and also Baker as back-stops. Baker has had criticism, but I frankly see nothing in Richards and Lescott that makes me think they’re a great improvement over what we had before at c-b. Neither can I agree about Hutton – he has simply left his flank open too many times. You *cannot* do that and get away with it.

    Jenny: You clearly admire Richards, and earlier in the season he certainly showed up well. But lately his game has dropped badly i.m.o. Maybe it’s all that tweeted criticism he’s been getting, but in my view he should have accepted that some of that was true and concentrated better. Just at the time when Villa needed to up their game after equalising Richard faulted badly -twice. Aided by others, I know, but he’s the skipper – he needs to do more to earn that badge.

  80. Paul,

    Apologies, I forgot that Seneros was out injured for quite a spell.

    Nevertheless, the availability of Baker and (sometimes) Vlaar did mean that we had cover for Okore and Clark. The difficulty was that at the start of the season Okore was out for some time, but Crespo was there (and Senderos) and we could have hung onto Baker. In fact, letting Baker out on loan was a double-whammy in my view as he can cover l-b as well as c-b. He started out as a l-b.

    This change-around of managers has not helped with the confusion.

  81. Hi JL,

    Maybe I did not make my point clearly enough, as we are in agreement over the number of cb’s we had.

    Richards was truly awful on Saturday, and has been at cb.

    Steamer, I agree that action needs to be taken, but these days it needs to be well planned and properly organised to achieve the desired affect, especially when our chairman is not on our doorstep.

  82. Just after watching goal again from Saturday
    1 st why does Hutton back off
    2 and lescott pathetic effort never mind guzan beat at near post
    3 rd what a farce from bacuna throw guzan howler all the way to other side field throw in all the way back to another pathetic effort from lescott so from than
    Guzan should have bags packed told never to return to villa as an employee
    Lescott same
    Bacuna teold to wake up
    All slating Richards unless I missed something on 3 rd goal think he getting unfair stick
    Pp
    Sendross could have played Saturday he was in same boat sissko not in 25 man squad

  83. JL- we sent out 3 left backs on loan absolutely mental.

    I remember the reason baker was sent out was to prove he could stay injury free as he spent a lot of the season out he promptly got injured at Bristol city, he’s now playing well though but got red carded for 2 yellows. Bennett sent out to Bournemouth for experience hasn’t played and Cissoko who we couldn’t sell went to Porto and hasn’t played as they changed manager I believe.

    I think Timbo got in 2 centre halves as we had Okore out with a serious injury and Baker and Senderos had proven injury prone, Can’t blame him as it was a constant problem last season. where he went wrong obviously is his choice of replacements.

    I agree with Jen protests will make recruitment nigh on impossible for Remi no matter how warranted it basically means we have given up on him the team surviving.

    The keeper he reportedly spoke to Steve Mandanda made 8 saves and saved 3 pens last night, I really do trust Remi to recruit decent players and I’m gutted anger from fans might well mean he never gets the chance. Yes he hasn’t won but neither did the man we brought in to save us last season, If Tim couldn’t get our brit players up for it or integrate the foreign lads what make anyone think Moyes, pulis , Sam would of pulled it out the bag we all have our views but I do not see that happening with this squad.

  84. Great article Jenny, certainly a huge element of where AVFC finds itself today in terms of on pitch performance.

    Thought I’d look at the squad Lerner bought vs. today, I’ll leave it to you to Wikipedia it most of the first 11 roll off the tongue from that 2005/06 season, only Amavi would get close to that team in my opinion.

    Agbonlahor is the only one remaining from that season, fair play for fooling people that long but it really hurts to see how a great squad like we had (and understanding nothing is permanent) has been dismantled but never replaced with the same or better quality.

    Even at the height of MON’s reign, despite the likes of Petrov, Milner, Young, Carew, there were all these disasters as well Agathe, Routledge, Salifou, Knight, Sidwell, Heskey, Beye

    I’m very much pro Garde and was actually disappointed by the team selection against Sunderland not that I don’t want us to try and win with our flair players but I honestly thought a pragmatic approach, consistency of selection and consistency of play would drill routines into our first 11 and get the comfortable enough to a point where we firstly become harder to beat. Lack of confidence and the ability to instil that confidence is undermining Garde as a manager for the long term unless a very different first 11 starts the first championship game without the baggage of relegation.

    I couldn’t bring myself to even watch the Sland highlights but from reading the above we’ve undone again by panic in the back four, still think we need to go with a back 5, 4 across the middle and Ayew or Kozak upfront (counterattack home and away). It may well be pointless even discussing formations or player selection as we should be planning for next season in reality.

    My big problem is the mathematical ability to survive hasn’t been concluded and drives the hope I have that we can survive. I’d prefer a conclusion such that either we blood the likes of Hepburn Murphy without placing any stress on them to keep us up and get them ready for championship football or we actually start winning games.

    Signed that petition to get Fox/Lerner out, better doing something than nothing.

    VTID

  85. one point I’ve thought about is where Leicester’s fans sat last season when they were at the bottom. From what I heard they were expecting nothing as they were fresh up and just enjoying the prem without pressure. In other words the expectations were low to start with and they just supported the team, sadly that is not the case at villa and while it won’t be the deciding factor it will be a contributor to our downfall.

  86. Hi MK

    Are you contemplating the same as me then about knowing our relegation fate sooner rather than later so we can relax in terms of expectation and just support the team on the basis of 90 minutes of football as opposed to the anxiety of whether the next win is coming and being angry at drawing or losing.

  87. Thank you DOR , and I know exactly what you mean about the keep on hoping aspect.

    Reading this though it’s going to be one hell of a job to attract any new players let alone decent ones .

    “But when Villa’s players emerged from the building, a group of Villa supporters turned on them, loudly abusing them as they traipsed dejectedly on to the bus before the chants about not being fit to wear the shirt also started.
    It was an uncomfortable sight for those who witnessed it and the players, many of them new to English football this season, were clearly shocked by the abuse from their own supporters.”

    Come to Aston Villa : you don’t just get abuse from the away fans , Your own fans a abuse you too .

  88. Matbe not at the top of the list Andrew , and the position 20 is not the fans fault but seeing “many of them new to English football , were clearly shocked by the abuse from their own supporters ” isn’t going to encourage the good players to stay either .

  89. Abusing our own players is the last resort of frustrated fans, while I don’t agree with it, I can absolutely understand it and would probably get caught up in the same actions as a release of pent up emotion having seen us beaten yet again.

    The problem is Fox isn’t going to be within earshot of any protest and Lerner is absent so can’t be the target of the frustrations. If it shows the players what it means to the fans to have to watch their perceived lack of effort while detrimental to the players, it is beneficial to the fans to let the frustration out.

    As fans we don’t have access to media to put our point across either emotively or factually so how do we best show our feelings. Protest needs to be organised and have full backing of all fans through blogs/facebook/AVST. Previous moments of protest resulted in partial support because some fans thought it was disloyal to complain. Lerner and Fox have shown no loyalty to the fans, time they got what’s coming to them.

  90. Agree with DOR about Remi but still disappointed with his tactics and subs.
    Andrew,
    The reasons good players don’t sign for us are –
    1) The chronic stench of incompetence and failure that hangs over AVFC, until that (Lerner) is removed Villa will continue to sink further into the annals of football comedy. Fox’s comments about Arsenal show why they didn’t put up a fight for his services and i doubt i Wenger even knew Almstedt existed.
    2) We have no-one who recognises talent, if Riley was scouting in France why didn’t he rcognise Mahrez for example, the lad at Everton from Barca, numerous others, Veretout and Amavi are useful but far more expensive than those two.

  91. Agree DOR, the players can’t complain, they’ve got away with shirking for years, if you look at the squad over the past five years the same names appear, they’re hardly busting a gut are they ?

  92. However, i have no confidence in our fans to demonstrate and thats why Fox is peeing all over them. I bet he vets the questions at the AGM and turfs out any problematic ones.
    AVFC has a history of rigging events like these, Ellis organising a shareholders meeting for 1am midweek when everyone was at work, his manipulation of shares etc, he was neveractually re-elected as a director without his proxy vote, the knob couldn’t take several very big hints and has now dropped us in the mire with Lerner. What other club would name a stand after someone who has done more damage to the club than anyone in its history.

  93. I find it hard to find justification for fans abuse of our players

    From my prospective the lads are trying really hard to make things happen

    I could understand if players didn’t care and were not bothered about having a relegation on there CV or were happy to take a drop in wages and the glamour of being a premiership player
    This i am pretty sure is a million miles from the truth

    Truth is our players and losing . making poor decisions , conceding goals and not scoring because collectively they are not good enough for this level

    I can’t blame a player for that – Randy is the one to blame as he has continually down graded the standard of players that we had before he arrived Barr the first 2 years
    You wouldn’t expect Jamaica to beat England

    If we had a quality striker things could be so different but our skin flint owner has driven the club into the dark ages

  94. Steamer

    Agree completely

    Obviously it’s not ideal to be booing and protesting and any protests will be directly at learner and the board.
    To be fair its not the players fault they are rubbish but if they trudge off the pitch without so much a glance at the away fans your going to get booed especially when loosing!

    When you look at the foreign lads at watford, kante at lester who is going to be world class it makes our signings rather average. Vertout looks tidy but im not sure how he can effect the game. I was hoping he would be goals and assist as he dont have the speed or phyicallity as a dm. Please not another westwood type 🙁

  95. I agree with runtingz also if the team won or turned the season around would the same people booing the players then bask in any glory they might feel from the teams success? Booing isn’t selective and affect those that don’t deserve it. For me you stick behind the team whilst sticking the boot in to lerner.

  96. The most interesting aspect of 2016 will be how Villa transitions from a Premier League team to a Championship team. Who will stay? Who will go? Can Villa do it competently? Will the club ever get sold? Will Villa get promoted in 2017? The likely prospect of relegation poses many questions.

  97. I don’t see the sense in booing the players. There’s been some good points made on why it’s wrong. It has a negative effect on the team in general. What good does that do?

  98. i can see why the fans are outraged and upset . But I think it’s a dangerous and slippery path and now it’s all over national media you’re going to get all sorts of idiots joining in – not villa fans I hasten to add . There came a point when there was a real ‘them and us ‘ in Lambert’s last season . Players started retaliating to the fans abuse. I won’t mention names but that spells breakdown and is completely hopeless. Unless you have players that can shrug it off and be incentivised to prove their jeering critics wrong (Rooney springs to mind) they are going to be playing with more fear than they are now . Is that what we want . You try playing in front of 35,000 ppl who are jeering and insulting you . The biggest humiliation is when your own fans turn .

    I agree with Runtingz – I didn’t see shirkers on Saturday , I saw players not good enough and overwhelmed by the pressure . Is jeering at Adama going to encourage him to sign a permanent contract . Is it ever fair for a mass of people to pick on a few indivuals who can’t shout back .
    If villa fans want to make their feelings known there are more productive ways of doing it because I’m sorry but this just looks like cowardly bullying to me.

  99. I’m sorry if that sounded harsh but I find it really disturbing. In which other sport do the supporters insult and abuse their own team. How many of them would swear and abuse Micah Richards to his face. I don’t want our great club to sink to this level – the level of Blackpool fans.

  100. i have not been on here for a few months and would like to say happy new year to all especially to the steamers what i can say after reading all the posts and good article from Jenny is that veiews are mixed on Garde can’t believe steamer likes him as for me he is the worst manager we have ever had by a long long way the team is now worse than at any stage i can remember
    the same old useless lumps of sh ite are played the likes of hutton who has given away 18 goals still played but is useless the keeper still played Richards is without any shadow the worst center half in the whole of the football league he has just decided to play there and is the worst center half on the books by a long long way as well as being a loudmouth over paid nose
    geste is the worst footballer i have ever seen in my life makes scabby look like mesie with his first touch .
    the main gripe with this french turd of as msnsger is that the players are showing less fight than ever and are the most unfit side i have ever seen it is plain to see that this idiot is just a yes man for fox he has no record of managing at this level the french leage is about div i stanard as the players we have brought have proved how many would get into any other prem side or are better than the players any other team have the answer is none as for those who say we cannot boycott the games you are not fans you are happy clappers who do not deserve to be called fans as to allow this turd fox to be kept and cannot see that villa park watching this sh ite will keep fox there the only way is stay away well thats my rant garde is the worst ever and only a front man for poxy fox and should be allowed nothing to spend as he is simply clueless as his team selections and subs have proved sack the lot now

  101. Jenny i would live to abuse Richards to his face he is a loudmouth overpaid nose who just does as he pleases and dont give a toss as his performances the last 3 games he has been back have shown would love to tell him that to his face over paid nose

  102. Hello JD, How are things in Tewks ? Bet you never thought you’d see Aston Villa in this state did you ? Changs lad is a regular sub for Walsall now so you can tap him up for some free tickets next year.
    Give S75 a call/facebook whatever and we’ll arrange a gargle somewhere away from the TV.

  103. John Doyle
    Good to see you back
    Agree with you on garde but if for palace game and has to be pal game we have a team like
    New keeper
    Richards okore Clark sissko
    New winger,center mid vertout Gil
    Ayew kozak
    For starters if Richards doesn’t play right back join
    Guzan Hutton lescoll Richardson Westwood gabby zog out the door before fa cup match
    I would give garde a chance

  104. the other week l said l met a young lad who just before the Newwcastle game he had been made redundant, and had paid for tickets for the Norwich game and the sunderland game , and he said if he could get his hands on some of them players he’d strangle the money grabbing b*****ds , l went to Newcastle then to Norwich , l f**ked the sunderland ticket in the bin , but if l could have got at any of them tossers l think l would have whacked them , its hard earned cash l’d spent so those of you sitting in the comfort of your house watching on a dodgey stick or laptop get off your arse and get in the ground and tell those around you that you think its fine and will be better soon , , you wont get out the ground alive , some say the away fans are the gems . let me tell you its at these games where its kicking off between the villa fans , the happy clappers are taking a pounding , at the sunderland game 2 villa fans were knocked out completely and my mate said he stayed out of it , thats whats happening,
    Mark you do make me laugh . IF those players turned it round and kept us up would those same fans start clapping them , of course they f**king would , if these players even tried 100% , the fans would get behind the team , but they have been let down , and as l said the comments at the games when they see the teams picked , thats when the mood changes , look at Frems/B62 posts when they’re at the games and he see’s the teams, tells you it all , and as Jenny put in this post about confidence ect , Then what is Remi telling these players as it didnt show anything against sunderland . ” the throw in ….FFS , listen to WM now !! the fans are going nuts , as l said take a trip to a live game
    a good mate of mine Tony Powell passed away today and he went to that sunderland game , what a memory to take with you as the last game you see ….

  105. Steamer
    lv had a word with some of the lads about meeting for a pint every week or two , as seeing Tony and Wixy passing today puts it all in perspective , f**k this s**t lets spend our money on a good time and a few pints mate , see you soon

  106. We need action , boycotts, protests whatever it takes, TF needs telling at the AVST meeting exactly what the score is and pressure put on him to resign, taking his co conspirators with him. These clueless morons have architected the destruction of our club, we need them all out and I’m afraid that includes Garde unless he suddenly turns it round and we start winning football matches on a regular basis and actually show us why he is the man to bring us back up and beyond. It’s been mentioned he was brought in for the long term rather than immediate impact, are we now saying we were relegated at the start of November??? I’m not having that, Garde had more than enough time to turn it around in the short term he could have then put the long term strategy in place once we were safe. When he arrived we were only 4pts from safety and had a comparable GD to those around us, now with our massive -GD we are effectively 12 points away from safety meaning certain relegation. He has had no language barrier, and if some are saying the new lads aren’t actually that bad( I’m not so sure) and a lot were creaming themselves at recruiting from the continent . I didn’t expect miracles, but did expect a bit of fight and some wins especially against the likes of Swansea, Watford, Sunderland, Newcastle, West Ham, Norwich etc you can’t tell me the likes of Norwich, Bournemouth, Watford, Sunderland and Newcastle have players that are so far superior than ours??? Why are we trying something different, MR at RB? Starting Traore?, dropping Guzan,? Picking a formation that offers stability ie 4-4-2? What about Kozak? What about trying a couple of younger lads at LB b4 we had AC back? Why not try pace down the wings and two big lads up top?? ANYTHING because we are utter s**te at what we are doing at the minute, and 4 draws( 2 extremely lucky!!!) doesn’t make us harder to beat, we are the easiest team in England to beat, we are out of the game as soon as the other side takes the lead. Those t**ts deserved the stick they got getting on their coach outside the SOL!!! Let them see how there actions are having severe consequences and how much agony they are causing the fans.
    Come the end of the season I would line the lot up in centenary square, from Lerner down and shoot the f**king lot of them

  107. Steamer75- fair enough mate but I don’t go because its not worth paying lerner for, you like a p*ss up and a laugh and meeting old mates I can do that without lining lerners pockets. If Villa fans feel they need to beat people up now because they have a different opinion it just about sums things up.

  108. it does mark but that is whats happening now , its a disgrace . but what lm getting at is it needs seeing . your only seeing whats going on ,on the pitch. its started last season ,
    but l do understand why Frem and B62 get angry plus a lot of others , even on The Villa Blog ,its getting a bit toxic . WM tonight the whole show was villa fans sounding off about the whole set-up , and l can only see it getting worse . l bet a pitch invasion aint far off .

  109. ST75 I can’t blame anyone for being p*ssed off its relentless but its just counter productive, its a shame the club now need the very people they have thumbed their noses at but that is where it’s at, Fans being fans have a love and affinity to the club that does not exist at the top.

  110. I think the villa fans have been remarkable restrained. This is 5 years in the making , watching us win what, a dozen or so games at home in that time. Madrid or barca fans would of strung the buggers up at the training ground by now.

  111. Another stat to back up john Doyle unfits side under how many managers
    Sunderland players ran over half mile than their villa opposition
    2 and or 3 rd match running under garde this is going since Mon days terry used to gloat about it, when Keane was here he left cause the players where to lazy to train

  112. Lot of media focus on villa tonight and obviously not good. Read a good interview with stoke chairman coates, ill pray for a owner like that tonight.

    No news on chairman or dirctor of footy. Odds on fox announcing it before meeting to deflect?

  113. Love all the suggestions by people in the game that we should prepare for the championship I’m sure thats what all the teams that survived did. Stan wants us to offload all the big wage earners on the cheap, Nzogbia for £2m!!?? what a laugh we have been trying for years to shift him, nobody would give 5p

  114. Mark

    We are going to have to give nzog a pay off to get rid! See remi going toon and the keeper magnanla going abroad. Linked to a young man city st whos name i cant spell!!
    Very interesting how we play the market, do we bother for loans or one eye on championship.

  115. I say use this time as a head start and build for the championship. Do what ever to get rhodes or austin. Get a gk in….worm at spurs? Gestede scored goals in championship so could be useful.

  116. Players to go asap, clarke, guzan, hutton, richardson, nzog, westy, gabby.

    Id just pay them all off if i could just to get thrm away from vp. Build around ayew, vertout, amavi, gg, gill, adama, grealish.

    I know he is in the doldrums now but i reckon jack could tear it up in the championship.

    Footy can change quickly, if we can somehow get learner and fox out and build a proper spine fortunes can change. Nothings going to haapen until we have a new back 5 and a st

  117. get Richardson out first the fu ckin big mouthed b nose worst center half in the top 6 divs would not get into the Cheltenham town side at center half and hutton would not get into the white hart side

  118. Randy hasn’t professed to say he has a football background. He has people with football know-how instead but things have not worked out. ……. WHAAAT, this is that deluded clown Ellis thinks, and some nutters want him back. Another article where he just talks about himself forgetting his devious manipulation that potentially cost Villa so many trophies. Ellis has been a problem since he arrived and even when he left he schemed to take control again. And as for Steve Stride he was Ellis pet monkey.

  119. Portsmouth now Herbert, haven’t heard that one before, what about Real Madrid ? no record o you at any of these clubs, your lying bs doesnt wash any more, just go and practice your overhead kicks in your back garden, BFR summed you up perfectly in his book.

  120. Why does the media persistently interview the people who got AVFC in this mess, Lambert and Ellis are just leeches from our recent dismal history, the fans want to forget their parts in our decline not be reminded of this vermin.

  121. Because they are like vultures Steamer, they’ll drag anyone out with a possible grudge to stick the knife in. Painful part for fans is all the p*ss taking of other clubs who we in turn took the p*ss out of
    the media are just fleas compared to that.

  122. Hi Andrew

    I’d only keep Clark from your list, completely agree that if (sorry, hope springs eternal) and when we are relegated the Clark, Okore partnership would be my preference. Need young and quick defenders so i’d add Lescott to your list.

    I am or was an AVST member, paid a fiver and got a few emails, sod that, doesn’t help i’m in Ireland but this organisation is the one potential way of galvanising support against Fox and Lerner under a single umbrella or else we’ll have a few sporadic token gestures and bedsheets with FOLAF on them.

    Seems to me AVST is lacking leadership and is just cosying up to Fox for some free passes into some perceived AVFC clique. The happy clappers have us doomed to be under Lerner’s ownership but still the problem is how do you tell an owner they are not wanted when they don’t even turn up.

  123. Just looking back at the Leicester v Villa game and at game 5 a pivotal point in Tims meltdown 5 games in!!??

    Here the lineup

    Aston Villa
    01 Guzan
    07 Bacuna (Hutton – 86′ )
    04 Richards
    16 Lescott
    23 Amavi Booked
    24 Sánchez
    15 Westwood
    25 Gil (J Ayew – 66′ )
    40 Grealish
    09 Sinclair
    11 Agbonlahor (Gestede – 75′ )

    Substitutes
    06 Clark
    17 Veretout
    18 Richardson
    19 J Ayew
    21 Hutton
    31 Bunn
    39 Gestede

    And hers Tims reaction at the end baring in mind he made some horrendous substitutions

    Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood told BBC Sport: “I’ve never felt this bad. Ever. There was a lot of bad play there in the last half hour. The only way you can stop the momentum is to stop the opposition. We turned it over stupidly.
    “What can I say? I’m gutted for everyone who’s associated with the football club. We have to stop letting in soft goals. Who cares if we played well? We lost. Totally lost.”

    Not much changed has there?? other than Garde has us more organised and playing better the Gaffs are still there.

  124. We have been taken for mugs once again, we are the new Fulham. Our appointments mirror those at Craven Cottage, Rene Muellenstein, Felix Mcgath and others. Can anyone tell me what Remi Garde has done in football to warrant being appointed manager at Aston Villa at probably the most critical time in the clubs history. How has he gained the necessary qualifications to suggest he can be more successful than anyone else. I totally agree with you set the club up NOW to start a season in the championship, at for me that has to start with a manager of some standing.

  125. Dor- pretty much spot on, Except one thing,
    I don’t mind Reilly’s involvement he had turned up Beneteke before he left for Liverpool, Amavi,vertout,Gana, Ayew since his return, I don’t think Tims influence can be taken as lightly as It has. I’d guess his input got us Gestede, Richards and Lescott and he decided Bacuna was a good enough RB with mutton in reserve and Richardson as back up to Amavi?? If Garde had been here I believe we would be looking at a much more balanced side and the likes of Jordan Graham would not be lost to us.

  126. Instead of villa fans knocking each other out why don’t the angry ones direct there anger at Lerner , fox and that clan

    at the end of they day it is they how have dragged the club into shame
    Villa fans can do damage to each other but this will not help the clubs plight so why bother

    Surely wether its not going to games or going and being vocal about the sham of an owner and his clan is far more proactive that any other form of anger/protest

  127. JD the horse had already bolted before Garde arrived, are biggest problem complete c**k ups teams do not have to work for a goal we give them away, Now Garde or anyone else can only use what he has and what Tim and co left him with particularly at the back was dogshite, like building a castle on sand.

  128. Hi JD – forthright as ever

    Not sure how good Garde is myself even though i think he is getting the lads to play more constructively that the previous manager – he also has the worst squad to work with than the others

    I think there were a number of reasons why he got the job – as he took over a side that had to sell all of there best senior pro – some of which are now flying high in the premier at much better run clubs than villa

    he also finished high up the table while bring the youth through as there was no money for him to spend

    the difference between the success he had in that role compared to his villa nightmare is the quality he is able to work with

  129. We said Runtings,

    We should be all directing our anger and disgust at Lerner, as at the end of the day, he is the owner, and the most we can hope to do, is to persuade him to sell the ship, before the insrance runs out and it sinks.

    Attacking each other on here and the new manager, is not going to get us anywhere positive, and the same with the players. If you really love Aston Villa, then now is the time to stand up and be counted, because OUR beautiful club needs us more than ever now. When the going gets tough, the tough get going. We have to give everything, at least for now, and perhaps, if the players and Remi feel that we are with them, things may change.

    Just make sure that every Vila fan signs the petition, so that Lerner understands just how bad the situation is, and let everyone get involved with the trust, and look to having a united voice and maybe at least buy a share of the club, so that in future , we have a voice, in all things Aston Villa.

  130. My thoughts on Moyes coming in and doing a better job than Garde are that Moyes would have the same squad.
    When he came in and saved Everton they at least had a strong core of players of the type he likes plus the emerging Rooney and Ferguson up top. What he didn’t have was a largely dysfunctional group partly non English speaking group that had not won in god knows how many games and a dressing room divided. This season has also been extraordinary because the form of the top clubs has been totally erratic and the bottom clubs have capitalised on this except barring the odd draw.

  131. I Meant the odd draw by us, usually stopping the slide with a few draws would not mean the rest of the pack gain ground and you would not expect the likes of Norwich, Newcastle, Bournemouth etc to be beating Manure and the like on a regular basis

  132. More good comments MK, and have now read Joey Barton’s piece, and he is exactly right, even if we had Mourhinio as manager, we would be saved.

    Maybe what is lacking is a Paul Mcgrath, Roy Keane or a John Terry. We are desperate for a strong leader on the pitch to galvanise the troops when things go wrong, and there are just not many about.

  133. I see klopp has said he doesn’t know if his players problem is in their heads or feet obviously not a good enough manager then get rid get moyes in.

  134. You know PP, this is the first Villa team where there isn’t a single player that i’d like to keep, remember when Hateley, Rioch Barry, Milner and the other greats left you were choked, but this shower can do one in their entirety.
    Agree, we need leaders.
    Moyes = Lamebert without the Jeerman badges.

    Is there a grassy knoll overlooking VP ?

  135. Made a codge up of that.

    MK
    damaging to our club I hope they get sued – Lerner & Fox ??

    Nice to see JD in the Mails letter page using proper words and punctuation and a very good post too.

  136. Well said Runtings as ever the voice of reason . I read an interesting piece by an ex premier league footballer who had been in a prem league relegated team. He said the affect in the dressing room is massive in that that the overriding mind set becomes self preservation. As he said, you know your are going to get booed so you protect yourself. You don’t put y ourself out there, you hide, you try and get through the games featuring as little as possilbe. It becomes a “me first, team second” mentality. Off the pitch they are planning their earliest escape from the club. Are we happy for all of our squad to desert ? Genuine question btw.

  137. Steamer- As much as the management have buggered the club its galling that media and football world start repeating what the fans have known for 5 years at least. Where was stanley then? Writing his column for lerner thats where.

    On the players, amavi, vertout ayew and maybe gil and grealish. They would all do better in a strong team .

    Garde is linked mainly with leaders all have been captains bar a couple

  138. Steamer
    Well put about no heroes
    Think that’s why so many want traore playing only one with a spark
    As for garde he has dumped Gabby about time slapped down greAlish to big for his boots but he keeps playing guzan at fault for a heap goals show us bunn couldn’t be much worse, Hutton same as guzan try young player from reserves, Richardson was dropped then reinstalled in team ,rudi for kozak,traore to start not come on when behind let him start

  139. Jen – I can understand the anger and reaction and I suspect its mob rule that allows people emotions to get the better of them. As I wrote earlier leicesters fans had no expectations and were enjoying the ride, we have had 5 years of disappointment. Its hard to tell people the players are only human and need support when the fans feel let down.
    It will destroy this team unless by some miracle it sparks a reaction.

  140. In response to Jen

    I’m happy for half of the squad to find other clubs or retire never to be seen again. They have shown to be not up to premiership grade, so why give them an opportunity to get us back up only to prove again they aren’t worth it the season after. I agree with that it may be a confidence thing and winning the championship or gaining promtion would instil confidence as we would have won games but I’m at the point now where the players who will bring us down aren’t fit for the championship because they’ll be mired in self-pity and who knows even traumatised by relegation.

    Keep – Amavi, Richards but as full back only, Clark, Okore, Gardner, Grealish, Gana, Sanchez, Bacuna, Veretout, Ayew, Gil, Gestede, Kozak, Traore, Bunn keep the kids that make up the first team squad and say goodbye to

    Guzan, Crespo, Bennett, Cissokho, Hutton, Senderos, Lescott, Cole, N’Zogbia, Richardson, Westwood (toss of a coin with Sanchez, to be honest, Sanchez because he’s an international), Sinclair, Agbonlahor

    Austin types fit the bill perfectly for Villa, keen to show their worth in the prem and will do anything to get back in there, that’s the mould, now we just need it in several positions.

    UTV

  141. I find it incredibly nauseating to read articles by flawed football characters including Barton, Collymore and Savage who are criticising our club. I believe these cretinous individuals should keep their comments to themselves – they are morons.

    It will be interesting to witness the intent of the board and the manager this month. We are desperately in need of experienced Premier League players to help restore confidence in the team. Can Remi attract the likes of Remy and Debouchy to drive add the quality that we require to help us with some football matches? Or should Remi plan for the Championship? Should we be buying players like Charley Austin who know the division and can get us promoted?

    We shall see.

  142. i dont realy care what garde did he aint doing it now all this he brought kids through where are they i am certian that every so called villa fan would forgive him if he left out the dross no need for names we all know them and brought 3 or 4 young players in bring back the loan and play Gardner and co players who are supposed to care not the ones we know are here for one last payday as they and i mean every one will never be paid what they are paid now we are the social for players who used to be able to play and now dont give a toss

  143. DOR- pretty much my thoughts and I think garde will find a few U21/youth players to throw in the mix especially wingers. Calder is due back I think and Robinson, I think calder has the build and ability to fill left midfield and maybe grow into a DM in time. Add a decent couple of forwards a CH and RB

  144. Richards S,
    Most of the media wouldn’t get stuck into the Scouse, Manc or London teams if they were as bad a Villa, its a Birmingham thing, when we had BFR and MON at VP they controlled the media by their personalities which i think, Remi can’t do, making both him and us an easy target.
    Had to laugh at Michael Owen, “Only my opinion but i have a feeling Aston Villa may struggle to avoid relegation this season” he gets paid for this crepe. If you want an honest opinion about Owen look up the end of this weeks True Geordie on Youtube, he tells it as it is.

  145. DOR/MK

    Understand where you are coming from, however, Cole is virtually a Coventry player, and doing well there, wonder how much he could have done for some of our young ones, before TS booted him.
    At the moment we may need Cissokho, Hutton and Bennett, but come the end of the season, many should go. It is ok to get rid of players, provided we have the right replacements, and at the moment we are struggling, unless Remi now gives the chances to our young players that have been out on loan. Clear outs are ok, if properly organised, but we do not want to keep doing the bomb squad, which basically, finally destroyed our average squad of the day, and replaced it with inexperienced youngsters, who became terrified of playing in the Premiership. TS and the moneyball system has done same after TS declared the team was unfit for purpose when they lost the FA cup final, which , at the end of the day was down to his team selection and tactics.

    Remi can only build on solid foundations if we are at last going to succeed, and that may take time.

  146. JD i agree that it would be beneficial to bring the younger lads in and dropped the heaps of sub standard for the prem players at the club

    but at the same time i can understand why he would play the higher paid seniors to attempt to avoid relegation
    if he threw 4 or 5 kids in the mix and we get drummed for a number of games i am not sure if its going to help the kids progression thou

    Once we throw in the premiership towel thou we may as well blood the kids

  147. for me we have already gone need players who want to try to perform and play not has beens just going through the motions the facts do not lie least ground covered of any team in the top four divs
    and we pay 1.5 mill a week for the laziest and bone idle players in the whole football league and the happy clappers just keep clapping steamer i bet Boots is turning in his grave god res his soul

  148. Not much to add that hasn’t been said.. we are a complete and utter shambles form top to bottom..

    The Norwich and Sunderland games have killed us off really.. two teams we could have easily beaten..

    We have Palace.. Lesta.. West Brom to play in the league in Jan.. but without a new GK and RB at the very min i can’t see us getting much out of those games..

    We may as well start building a team for the Championship..

    One player i would be looking at is Dwight Gayle.. think he would score loads in the Championship.. we should get him in..

    Outs for me are Guzan..Richards..Hutton..Cissoko..Gana..Gabby..Sanchez.. N Zog.. Gill..

    Either they have been here too long with a losing mentality or they don’t have the mental strength to play Wed Sat week in week out..

    Would like to keep Adama..Veretout and Ayew.. they have good potential..

  149. I’ve gotta be honest, I wouldn’t be fussed if we sold the lot, yes Amavi looked ok before Injury, Veretout has come on and Ayew has played better, but I honestly expected more for their price tags and the hype, I can’t see them wanting to play in the second tier( which is now a certainty ) next season, not if ANYONE else comes in for them. The likes of Westwood, Guzan, Gabby, Richards, Bacuna, Nzogbia , Hutton, Lescott, Clark etc etc have been p*ss poor all this season and some of them have never been any different. I’m with JD, RG is our Felix McGrath and has taken us down, yes the rot set in before he arrived but he has ensured our demise and continued our winless streak , he has shown me nothing that warrants him staying next year, these next 18 games are his job interview and he has a lot to do to pull this out of the bag. He has to show he can manage a side, set one up to counter the opposition or impose ourselves on them. I cannot work out what he is trying to do, nor can the players. We can forget about the Charlie Austins of this world he is too good for us, he will be playing a division higher than us, we need to be realistic. We need 8 players minimum, we need a tight defence and a goalscorer to get of of the championship, our midfield is too soft, pedestrian and creates f**k all. We play without pace, purpose or direction lacking in fight and grit.
    I hope Fox gets strung up at the AVST meeting, I can’t see Lerner ever having the balls to come to VP again

  150. Evening each,
    Well, what transfer activity over the next week or so. This weekend is effectively a free hit. So, an opportunity for business. Some transfer activity would send out positive message. We all know the priority areas.
    By the way, I’m a sceptical about RG at this moment in time. Everyones saying what a great managers,tactician,coach. I havn’t seen anything to convince me yet. I’m quite happy to let anyone on VFL to convince me otherwise,…….. Archie

  151. I think if we had been able to put out the side that took on west ham with okore and lescott and ayew and gestede and same midfield we would be looking at at least 12 to 14 points now IMO .

    Sods law killed the teams momentum with injury and suspension and allowed Richards and Clark back in to feck up. we could all be talking very differently now. Against west ham we controlled the midfield against the other 2 we got done on the break.

  152. Mark k
    Watching stoke v pool
    And the bigger difference is both teams back 4 are a unit don’t t see full back out of picture, and when they go forward players flood the box
    Now to goals we have concede blaming Richards Clark you are been unfair
    Sunderland 1 st Hutton backed off let him shoot far too easy yes deflection of Richards not his fault
    2 and lescott was marking Defoe Hutton AWOL guzan beat near post
    3rd bacuna throw ,guzan howler lescott again Marking Defoe
    Norwich 1 st Hutton AWOL
    2nd Hutton AWOL yes Clark should done better but picture I seen Richardson strolling back no shout
    West ham
    Hutton AWOL guzan went down in installments every shot is goal conceded
    Newcastle
    Shocking defending from corner can t exactly remember who,but think guzan should done better
    Arsenal
    1 st Hutton pen
    2 and entire team effort to concede this one from edge of arsenal box to goal in seconds watching Sanchez vertout Hutton effort getting back pathetic
    Same culprits week in week out ,bunn and co can’t be as bad and definitely remind should have back 4 working as unit by now big Sam or Pearson would

  153. Yes JG hutton is not a good defender neither is richards, and okore is the only partner I’ve seen clark play well with.
    First goal against Sunderland their left back was allowed to run from the halfway, if we had had the same team as against west ham there would of been westwood tracking him and sanchez covering and okore to, as it was we had hutton on his own. Everyone wanted our more attacking players on and thats what you get, Garde cannot make these idiots track back so he doesn’t play them and I can’t blame him. And he is right if we took our chances Gestede particularly we would win games.

    Jen he must of mellowed 🙂

  154. Jenny
    After collymore time at villa I hated him but mellowed with age he does get controversial and to be honest bar sissko vertout kozak Gil traore the rest never broke sweat

  155. Mark k
    Why was Westwood missing ,another act of pentulance from p*ss poor player who disrespected his manger by that tackle when match was over cowardly attack from cowardly player never in the heat of match does he tackle

  156. the noses have 100 times more chance of being in the preRowett don’t need any prem experience for next season ony one thing that is getting on my tits real bad about this is that m next season than us and this is what all you fu ckin happy clappers need to understand garde would take us out the football leage if he was kept as he is a fu ckin cluless moron and my own two eyes tell me that but the noses could go up from the play offs with a team that cost 3 months of scabby s wages this is what you call building a team on f all not the sh ite talked about gaurde

  157. John d
    Would be on same ideas as you but realistic how can anyone appointed by man saying its OK shirt sales are great the customer is always wrong in his eyes,fox and all his muppets must go this French guy was supposed to be great fitness coach yet we have been out run in last two games two months after remind took over,where are signings for god sake Stevie wonder could see we need keeper right back midfielder center forward since before remind where are they as for blaming rudi missing chances another easy target for remind never mind half your team selections leaves one to two goals down every match

  158. I have just been listening to the BBC podcast with Joey Barton and Pat Murphy. They included the interview with Tom Fox just before Xmas. It is unbelievable. Fox believes he is doing a great job. He believes he has increased revenue and cut operating costs. Does he inderstand that we are about to lose 100 million+.

    The guy is a complete moron.

  159. Ade to Palace ?

    Greg Dykes a nutter, firstly the BS about Roy Hodgson and now England are going to win the World Cup, bet he’s putting a few quid on Villa to win the league this season.

  160. mark king have you got sh ite in your eyes have you not watched the sh ite this frog has served up garde could not wipe Rowett s ar se he is so far behind him in every thing and building a team on f all the scum cost 3 months wages we pay scabby for the whole team I would say that is about 100 times better than this french twat look at the players he keeps picking you must be a happy clapper wanted by Newcastle yes mate they have had some great managers like us this french twat is just a yes man for fox but the trouble is he does not have as much passion as fox and that is minus 60 just open your eyes and tell e who picks the same cr*p every week and is scared to change nothing could be lost we are alredy down as 50 to 1 to stay up tells you grow some mate and see the real world

  161. While some are trashing our existing squad, reflection on our last time of relegation may want to reflect on the following extract from then:
    Many of the team who had played in the relegation season helped to restore Villa to the top flight, including Spink, Keown, Evans, Daley, Birch, and the fine partnership of Aspinall and Thompson. These players, along with the likes of Bernhard Gallacher, David Platt, Kevin Gage and Alan McInally, put smiles back on the faces of Villa supporters. The 1987-88 season would definitely prove to be the sunshine after the rain.
    Graham Taylor managed to turn round a failed and inexperienced squad…..

  162. JD no mate I haven’t but you’ve got a potty mouth. It seems that you like to ignore the fact he’s inherited a mess and not one player is of his choosing, the whole squad has lost its bottle long before he arrived bar Ayew. I have watched every game and he has improved plenty about the team but he can’t put the ball in the net for them and he can’t stop the idiots conceding unnecessary goals that’s down to the players.
    Don’t know if you’ve noticed but this has been going on for 5 fecking years. Bringing anyone in won’t make any difference at this point as they are not going to rebuild a squad in January with 200k or £200m.

    Garde is no yes man either he has stated what he wants from the board and what he expects and if they don’t hold up their end he will be off. When Tim was here he changed the team every five feckin minutes how did that go? Passionate Tim then sat in the dugout like a spoilt brat, If think passion alone is going to change this season you have your head well and truly wedged up your harris.

  163. Love the bit about minefields steamer in these sensitive times, didn’t mention the overwhelming air power, ships, intelligence…………………………..

  164. DOR – I can see where you are coming from and I think it would be beneficial to some of the players themselves and club . It needs careful thought not an emotional blame game which Lambert and Sherwood’s cull implied . The “you’re losers all out ” reaction to prevent some babies being thrown out with the Aston Villa bath water . Marc Albrighton to name one .

    James G – I may be doing Stan a disservice but I can’t see further than his contraversial gets more listeners and settles scores . The problem for Stan is he’s got a conflict of interest . On the one hand he is Mr Villa Supporter and on the other he is Colymore Talk Sport Presenter. Aren’t pundits supposed to be objective . Has he only just woken up to Vilka’s steady decline over the last four seasons ? No of course he hasn’t but as a broadcaster he had to keep in with the Villa hierarchy to do his job – match day programmes , interviews , commentating from VP . It couid be argued that the desire to get even following his match day programme spat and the professional need to recruit more listeners to his show is partly responsible fir him “seeing the light “. I don’t see how he can combine the two roles with genuine authenticity .? That is not Stan’s fault it would be the same for any broadcaster and it’s a fact of life that you don’t eat the hand that feeds you – until they stop your match day programme page 🙂

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