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Mad World?


villafan306
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At the end of last season we thought that MON would bring in some players that would make the fans go crazy....well he could very well be about to do so!

Just after 2PM this afternoon it was announced on Sky Sports News that Marlon Harewood was at Bodymoor Heath to discuss terms over a move to Villa Park. Fast forward four hours and whilst there is no news of a signing, we have over 50 pages on the message boards with some very strong and very different views.

What we have seen are a lot of over the top comments probably resulting from the lack of transfer activity in recent weeks. My purpose for writing this is to get people to take a step back and think about things.

First of all let's have a quick look at the man in question. Marlon Harewood scored 51 goals in his 181 appearances at Nottingham Forest and got 47 in 142 games for West Ham. Stats which aren't too different to John Carew's 10 goals in 35 games for Lyon and 3 in 11 for Villa. Harewood is the same age as Carew...well 11 days older for the pedantic amongst us. Just like Carew, Harewood has some good compilations knocking around on youtube, the highlight being his 16 Premiership goals in the 05/06 season.

Harewood only managed 3 gaols in a troubled year last season, but playing devil's advocate for a few seconds new Villa boy Nigel Reo-Coker didn't have the best of times at Upton Park last year either.

And so the question becomes why are Villa fans so upset? Harewood seems very very similar to Carew, being 11 days older and 3 inches shorter doesn't warrant all the negativity that has been floating around, so what does?

The answer, to me, seems very simple. Expectations.

After being told that we would sign some top class players this summer fans seem to think we should be going for the likes of Owen, Bent, Defoe and Saviola. And against these names Marlon Harewood doesn't really stand out too well. But fans need to realise that we were never going to make every signing a top class one. Nobody said that every signing would be a top class one; in fact I'd probably wager that the opposite was said!

And to further explore that point what does make a top class player? Reo-Coker is apparently top class, but why? One good season in the Premiership, one bad. 23 years old with plenty of room to improve and a burning desire to get to the top. Compare this with Harewood and what is the difference? The only one I can see is that Harewood is four years older. Does that mean he cannot improve? Does that mean he can't recapture his form from just two seasons ago and grab 16 Premiership goals?

Harewood probably isn't the most technically gifted player in the world, he may not be the fastest and he may not quite be the best finisher. But after seeing some of his goals over the last two seasons he does have some good traits. He is a strong, physical player who gives defences problems. He is surprisingly quick and whilst he might not be able to burst past players like Gabby, he can certainly turn them inside out and barge through them! And probably the most important fact is that he always seems to be in the right place and the right time. Something of a poacher. Remember the second goal of his hat-trick against Villa at Upton Park two seasons ago? The one where he kicked the ball just as it was getting into Tommy's hands? That is the kind of thing we have lacked over the last few years.

It surely can't be too hard to see why Martin O'Neill wants to add him to our squad, but what I can't understand is why so many people are against him from the start and how people can be so blinded by false expectations that they can't see that for just under £4million Harewood might be a huge bargain!

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well said. i would understand people moaning if the transfer window shut tomorrow, but it doesnt lol. hes a decent player with a decent record and good ambition. we'ev got 2 players in our squad who have played in an fa cup final recently, those 2 players are reo-coker and harewood, surely that tells you something. get shaun wright in now to shut these stupid fans up!

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Many Villa fans appear to be unable to place trust in MON's acumen after so many years of threadbare management at Villa Park. He would have to be a total idiot to let a half-dozen squad members depart from a thin squad and then not bring in as many or more replacements. Of which Harewood, it appears, will be one. I'm not excited by Harewood, but not every signing has to be Ronaldinho.

My word to the panicky would be, "U turn if you want to." :suspect:

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Harewood would almost certainly be Carew's number two.

You guys seem to forget we need a good season under our belt to be in with a chance of the Saviola's of this world. Money is one thing but these guy's want european footy as well.

Reo & Marlon got The Hammers into one of the best FA Cup finals in living memory and then did reasonably well in the UEFA cup the following year (Certainly better than we did the last time we got into Europe)

Support MON and his judgement he has not failed us yet!

Up the VILLA !!!!!!!

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It's gone mad alright.

when we signed that Watford lad - Harry Forrester - no one said "we've ben lied to, or let down or whatever". We just signed a player who might turn out to be good and do well for us.

Now we (might) sign what looks like a back up to Carew, adding one body to the squad - a big powerful forward to back up for Carew (I guess) and people go mad.

Why? It's got nothing to do with lies, it's just that people making the accusation don't happen to rate Harewood (which is fine). But what they are really mean, surely, is "I think Harewood is pants, even though MO'N thinks he isn't pants".

I like Steven Davis, MO'N obviously didn't. So what? Managers pick the team. We struggled last season through not having back ups to players when they got injured or lost form. Now we get a back up and ....

I am unsure about Carew's fitness record, but he can be very effective as a big, strong, fast forward. Harewood seems to be in a similar mould, with a less good touch, perhaps, but is more direct in running at goal.

I rate Luke Moore highly, and Gabby has come on bundles. So 2 big men, and 2 smaller faster players. looks decent enough to me - I don't see much problem with having Carew and Gabby/Luke (little and Large) as a good front 2, and with Luke/Gabby and another big powerful confidence player in Harewood as a decent front 2 and back up front 2 of similar style.

The issue of other positions - right back in particular is more relevant than a back up striker, surely? So why get so worked up about adding a forward?

IF we don't get anyone in there at right back, THEN have a moan at the manager.

Basically, how can someone moan when the squad is now (or about to be) better than it was yesterday? Other than saying they don't rate Harewood, I don't get it at all.

If MO'N wants Harewood, and gets him, why is Fitzgerald's fault, or Randy? for not interfering and saying "no he's not my idea of a good player you can't buy him"? Yeah right.

Gabby and Luke are both good young players who I believe and hope will come on next season. They'll get their chance, and can be rested if necessary, now. Competition for places is good.

Ashley Young? who'd honestly say they rated him before we signed him? (any who did will have seen little of him, themselves to make the judgement). Yet more will have seen Marlon Harewood play against us a few times. And look dangerous and score a hat-trick in the process.

MO'N has seen something in Harewood that he likes. Give the bloke a chance (MO'N and Harewood) neither have let us down.

And if Marlon doesn't succeed, we'll get most of the money back anyway. It's not like the entie budget has been blown on him.

Some managers pay over the odds for players who turn out to be unsettling for their club, ineffective and underwhelming. Others spend less on players and turn them into supermen - Allardyce for example. MO'N has a similar record for polishing rough diamonds.

Judge on the pitch, for Villa. That's what counts.

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Apart from comparing Carew and Harewood's age and size, are you seriously trying to justify comparing the 2 as footballers? Can't wait til some of the Norweigan Villans read that

Haven't read any of the other threads so far, but I really don't understand the signing, were it to go ahead. Unless Randy's dishing out so much money that we may as well waste nearly £4mil on a playe bought solely for back up and the odd League Cup match

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Well said 306. Not every signing will be in the superstar or NRC category. We will buy the odd player like Harewood who will not put bums on seats or excite but who will improve the squad, do a decent job when needed (in Marlon's case on those occasions Big John is out or rested). Marlon and John would not very often start a game as our two strikers and if we now add a player like Defoe to the striking options then I think few would complain about Marlon's name being added to the squad.

In Martin & Randy I still trust. :notworthy:

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Apart from comparing Carew and Harewood's age and size, are you seriously trying to justify comparing the 2 as footballers? Can't wait til some of the Norweigan Villans read that

Yes, I am.

Similar ages, goalscoring records, physiques...

I think Carew is the better player - better touch and better experience of top level football.

My point is that MH would makea good back up for when JC is missing. He won't IMO cause the team's style of play to change drastically. He's big, fast and direct.

Like the Norwegian Villans, I've only seen MH play live a very few times on which to judge. I've seen highlights and telly games, too. He struggled last season. He had a cracking season the year before, scoring some quality goals. Including 3 against us in one game (though we stank, credit to MH for his performance in that game).

If he costs 3.7 mill or whatever, and MO'N is happy to pay it, then fine.

IMO the views on MH are fair enough, of whatever persepctive, but the combined almost vitriol is ridiculous. MH has coppeda lot of stick, fair enough I guess, but the club (Fitzgerald and the board, not the manager, interestingly) has also been slagged off. Bonkers and no perspective, IMO. Totally misplaced and OTT.

IF we'd signed I dunno, Crespo, for 25 million people would moan that Gabby and Luke were being pushed out, that the wages or price were too high, that it would be disruptive.

It's mental on here today, IMO.

Perhaps by getting a forward back up we've more money to cover positions where a player will cost more? We don't know. We can't see the whole picture. No one's seen MH play under MO'N, no one knows who else we're after. What's got into people? I'm baffled.

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Apart from comparing Carew and Harewood's age and size, are you seriously trying to justify comparing the 2 as footballers? Can't wait til some of the Norweigan Villans read that

As they will probably be fighting for the same spot, yes I am comparing them, and I also included their recent goal scoring stats which are very similar.

And I look forward to debating the issue with Norwegian Villans (thought FWIW I would pick Carew over Harewood from what I have seen of the two).

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Carew is in a totally different league to Harewood. And personally I'd question a player who, having said he wanted to leave a club to play 1st team football, chooses to move somewhere to be a back up

(Edited to remove a stray question mark :) )

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I'm glad this went up on the front page.

The other story led to such a strong feeling of negativity it's nice to see someone taking a step back and seeing this for what it is. Nicely done sir!

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Very good article that.

Certainly made me take a step back and look at the deal again, and whilst I can't say I am over the moon about the prospect, , maybe he could do a job for us as a squad player.

My main issues are the price (I know the market has inflated, but £3.7m is steep imo) and his overall quality.

He went downhill fast after a poor run at West Ham and from what I have seen of him he seems very much a confidence player, brilliant one day, woeful the next.

There are those who say we should back MON's judgment without question or concern, but I disagree. I voted Labour at the last Election, but I certainly don't agree with every decision they make.

I will support the player from the moment he signs on the dotted line, but I maintain that there must be better value for money out there.

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What the f**k are you lot talking about? Harewoods a bag of shite and we all know it! im amazed at some of the comments ie 'give the lad a break'! were not running a charity for prem rejects, and i for one dont want to see him warming his fat arse on our bench all season picking up his 20 grand a week or whatever it is for doing diddly squat which is exactly what i think the fools worth nothing i wouldnt want him in my sunday team!!!

If this is the callibre of player were bringing in for next season expect a dogfight people, MH was surpluss to requirements at west ham ask yourselves why gentlemen! sorry but this is unacceptable!! mon give youre head a wobble son and spend wisely!

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