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    Steve Bruce

    Haha yeah good point!

    Steve Bruce

    Don't worry mate. We're a cursed club, if he moves to you he'll no doubt turn into Pep mkII and win you the league.

    Mile Jedinak

    He hasn't got it in him to play midfield twice a week, but he's still a very effective player to have. I think he'd be great as the central defender in a back 3. It's a less physically demanding position than DM, so we'd get more games out of him. Plus if it's true we're getting Tuanzebe back again next season, I think a potential 3 of: Chester* - Jedi - Tuanzebe could really suit all 3 of them. * if we manage to keep hold of him!!

    Keinan Davis

    Gah what a boob! And i'm always so snitty when other people make the same error

    Keinan Davis

    Completely agree Tro. I do wonder what would have been had we managed to secure Leonardo Ulloa in January, instead of him pointlessly going to sit on Brighton's bench.

    Keinan Davis

    Absolutely cannot sell. Makes no sense either given that he'll be on peanuts and that we wouldn't get a great amount for him just yet. His goals ratio will improve but he's so much more than that. He's a perfect foil for either a second striker or a secondary line of attacking midfielders. I've always imagined him to be ideal to use at the top of a 3-4-3-1 style formation (ala the way Chelsea play) if we could only find the right blend of players to sit behind him.

    CEO Vacancy - who's next ?

    The group Inc Hollis, King etc who stepped in to help last time would be great, except I can't imagine they'd be willing a second time around. They must feel like a parent who's just put a fresh nappy on a baby, only for it to shit itself the second they put it down again.

    Jack Grealish

    If Jack goes (as now looks certain) then Xia is dead to me. There's no way back... Ever. I don't care what he says or does beyond this point. All he had to do was manage the club properly and the lad would've stayed another season. Sell up now Tony because Villa Park will never forgive you for selling it's favourite son, simply to bail out your greed and stupidity.

    Going Under ?

    Could we not go to a huge Chinese based conglomerate and offer to give them a load of Yuan in exchange for a practically interest free loan in the UK? Or does it not work like that?

    Transfer Window Summer 2018

    Shame we can't quickly sell Hogan for a fee and use his wages on Hernandez.

    New Manager Speculation

    If Derby can appoint Lampard, we could attract Arteta. I think it would be quite an attractive proposition for him actually.

    Steve Bruce

    Few thoughts - apologies if I'm repeating what's already been said (I'm just too depressed to read back through this thread right now sorry). I'm with the majority in believing that Bruce isn't the man. I wasn't totally against him in the first place - I thought (rightly) that he'd be a good choice to sort out the anarchy in the dressing room, however I just couldn't see him getting us playing the type of football which ultimately wins automatic promotion in this league. And I (and many others) were proved correct. But, we are where we are and the question I now ask myself is - what would be best for the club. Stick with him or let him go and get a new man in? My instant reaction was get shot. If he can't get us promoted with the crown jewels of the Championship, how's he going to do it with what will inevitably be a weaker squad - right!!?? Well I can't say I've strayed too far from that line of thinking, but I have considered quite a few reasons why keeping him on might not be the worst thing in the world. It requires a bit of pragmatism and letting go of that frustration which is no doubt still boiling over inside you (like it is me). In no particular order, I give you reasons to stick with Brucey: We'll get a full pre-season and season with Steve Agnew in the coaching set-up. We saw the impact he had when he came in - whether that was a honeymoon effect or not I don't know, but you'd hope his influence over the course of the summer would be very beneficial. The player moral (loss in playoffs aside) will be better - or rather, less affected with Steve remaining. He is a popular figure with the players and boy could we do with some stability in that area. Jack likes him - and this may well be the most important reason to keep him!! Get rid of Bruce and who knows what then goes through Jack's head. Right now i think playing for the manager who's treated him so well is a big factor in him staying put for a bit longer. Was he just unlucky last time out? Crap football aside, we just had a season where Wolves turned into a Premier League team overnight, Cardiff did a Leicester and just didn't stop getting results and so we then had to face the best team in the league in the playoff final. I think the answer is still no - he should have had us winning/coming second regardless, but you do begin to think, to come so close in what was a really abnormal year he deserves another crack. In a year where most of the top teams will be under new management (Baggies, Swansea, Stoke, Derby), is consistency more important than ever? I'd hate us to bring in a new man, suffer a slow start whilst he adapts the team - only for it to work the other way round and there be no real front runner. His contacts could be crucial. The loans we got last year, plus JT were pretty much down to him. In a season where we'll be scratching around in that market again, we could need him to pull a few more of those rabbits out of the hat. Sacking him would cost us money - money we clearly can't afford to waste! I know people are saying that he might want a break from football due to the personal circumstances he had to go through at the end of the season, but I think it could be quite the opposite. He's endured that period and god knows how difficult it was to commit time and headspace to football during it. It hasn't gone away and he'll still be suffering, but he's no longer got the weight of responsibility on him - in actual fact I wouldn't be surprised if he wants to throw himself into work and commit more time than ever to it. It's a selfish way to think about it, but it could be that he's much better situated to manage the team next year. Finally - is it the right thing to do? Sack a man for getting within a whisker of promotion despite all the personal things he had to endure? Sometimes karma works in mysterious ways people! As I say, even with all those reasons for keeping him, i'm still undecided. Interesting to add them into the debate though.

    Villa and FFP

    Apologies if this has already been asked/discussed, but can we not just break the rules and pay the fines? Is there ever a risk of points deductions/automatic relegation? And if so what level of overspend does that come in at? Whatever happened to QPR getting sent to the Conference - surely they never made up the massive overspend they made? I've read articles that say both Leicester and Bournemouth broke the FFP rules when they got promoted and paid fines of somewhere in the region of £10m. If Dr T is as wealthy as some seem to think, surely that's a drop in the ocean?

    Tony Xia

    It is a very depressing read isn't it. In my most optimistic of moments since the loss on Saturday, I've thought that another challenge next season wouldn't be impossible. Yes we've lost Terry, Johnstone, Snodgrass, Grabban etc... but with a few savvy purchases and the younger players stepping up to the mark, we could rise again! A fresher, faster, more vibrant team. A new manager with real attacking intent! Convince Jack to give it until January and see where we are then. But following those words from Dr Tony I just can't see it. He's basically said we're resigned to playing the long game. Wait it out and see where we are in a few years once the clubs in better health. Bruce will keep us in the division and whilst we plod along we can start to implement a much longer term approach. And if that is the plan, then keeping Grealish is pointless - best to sell now whilst he's got years on his contract and we can get a good price for him. We can invest that money into 10 potential future Grealishes who might be flourishing by the time we're ready to have another crack. We basically just mortgaged the family estate for two spins of the roulette wheel and now the bank's come calling. In hindsight it was utter stupidity when you consider the risks involved which are now becoming reality.

    New Manager Speculation

    Stoke might well be very poor, but they'll be able to (be forced to) sell Jack Butland... which in turn will give them a massive advantage when it comes to FFP. They'll easily get £30m for him, given how many clubs will be clambering for him, and I doubt they'll be silly enough to splurge it all on 2 vastly overpriced strikers like we did.