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GOOD NEWS... NO CAP ON PLAYER'S WAGES - OFFICIAL


JohnCresswell
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Peter Cross writes:

Villa Fans are assured that there in neither a "cap" on player's wages nor expenses. "Randy supports MON ...... simple as that". Read the full details.....

Many of you will now have read my earlier controversial posting – “Black Monday or Good Friday”. To quickly summarise, I set out an opinion, having read in the Press that Gareth Barry had recently received a substantial pay rise taking him up to £45k per week. I detailed factual financial information that showed how we lagged almost 50% behind the “Top Clubs” under HDE and argued on this evidence together with the recent exodus of players that the current wages bill has gone down significantly under Randy Lerner and the cost of “player-trading” (net transfer costs – “ins” minus “outs”) is negligible.

Because of this conclusion, I went on to state that I further believed that GB’s pay would be the limit on wages for future player acquisitions. In consequence, there was very little prospect of Aston Villa being able to attract any “top-signings” as previously predicted by the Chief Executive Officer, Richard Fitzgerald, Furthermore, with such a financial barrier to future acquisitions, there was virtually no prospect of the Club ever competing in Europe.

I concluded by asking Randy Lerner - “to either repudiate my assertions that our pay structure is a barrier to attracting “top-class” signings of International calibre. Alternatively and better still, prove my assertions unfounded by ensuring that at least one such “top-class” signing is made within the next two weeks”.

Today, I received the following response from General Krulak – “Krulak here. Not even sure how to respond to this post...a post without any intellectual rigor or basis behind it. A post that regurgitates Richard Fitzgerald's comment that has been discussed by myself no less than 20 times...a comment that was NOT the Club's position and NOT one that even falls within his remit. A post that presupposes that Randy Lerner has put a "cap" on expenses for players and for the Club. If you are looking for a COMPLETE denial, you have got it!! Randy will support MON...simple as that. Let's face it; MON is in the best position to know what he needs for his Squad (now and for the future). He has scouts that also know what he wants and are out there doing their jobs. He knows he has an owner that will support him. Neither Randy, MON nor I have ever said that one year after taking over the Club we would be challenging ManU day in and day out. We are not there yet...BUT, that IS the goal and we WILL get there! BUT, we will get there in a timeframe that makes sense...and that will be lasting”.

Signed : Semper Fidelis, General Krulak

I have replied – “General Krulak - That is exactly the response that I wanted. But please try not to subjugate my argument as having no intellectual rigour. Any opinions or assumptions, I qualified as such and if not apparent to the reader, I apologise. However, the financial data contrasting Aston Villa's football staff spend -v- other Prem clubs was on public record until Randy Lerner's acquisition last year. Current comparisons therefore have to be conjectural; there is no alternative. We now never hear or see anything officially from the Club about any finances (which is your prerogative). I am surprised to hear that Richard's comments were outside his remit. Perhaps it would have been wise to correct or qualify them immediately they became news instead of allowing the cynics to turn them back on the Club, as they have in the last month or so. As Chief Executive Officer, what else is outside Richard's remit?

Incidentally MON stated last season (I believe it was on the AVFC website) "I expect to be challenging for European football next season (or something similar, meaning Prem. League, Top6 or 7). So how does this "sit" with your time frame of expectations? I felt at the time, that it was perhaps a little cavalier, if not foolish. I don't think any sensible fan has ever expected to see European football at Villa Park for at least 3, possibly 4 or 5 seasons. It must take time, as you have said. More important it must be enduring, not just a "flash-in-the pan". And to now have your denial that there is no "cap" on wages and Martin has got the Board's 100% backing on any acquisitions he may need - that is good enough for me. Thank you General. UP THE VILLA”

So all now rests on MON’s shoulders – I hope they’re paying him what this HUGE responsibility deserves.

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i dont see a problem in the manager or the board having high expectations and thinking positively, if it comes off this season or next season or the season after, im getting a little frustrated by people questioning their attitude or commitment after 2 matches.

it excites me that the CEO is excited about villas prospects, if hes made a slight faux pas in declaring his views to a quote hungry media i dont see why he should be constantly brought up on it, like i say the fact that the people behind the club are excited about the way we are headed makes me a happy bunny!!

i sometimes worry that the general thinks twice about what hes got himself into when he reads some of this, i also think some people abuse his openness and availability to ask stupid questions to which no one could possibly expect an answer. you cant moan when someone from the club makes a statement which doesnt materialize but at the same time keep pushing and pushing for more

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The one thing I will say is, as a fan, I never "expected" to have to wait "4 or 5 seasons" to get into Europe. I thought the UEFA cup would be achievable after 2 seasons, 3 at the very most.

Was I being naive, or did I allow myself to get caught up in the 'hype' coming from VP?

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Randy will support MON...simple as that. Let's face it; MON is in the best position to know what he needs for his Squad (now and for the future). He has scouts that also know what he wants and are out there doing their jobs. He knows he has an owner that will support him.

Peter, this has been said by all at villa repeatedly. Granted that it doesn't go into the specific details of how they will support MON but it does mean we as fans are expexted to support MON also. Picking holes in the board's / MON's statements and how they go about thier job's is exactly the opposite of support in my opinion.

You've got your answer from the General which quite frankly shows a great attitude from the club by attempting to quell our fears and doubts, but you can't expect complete transparency in everything they do, its not like the old days.

We must Trust them to do their jobs now.

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NEITS said:

The one thing I will say is, as a fan, I never "expected" to have to wait "4 or 5 seasons" to get into Europe. I thought the UEFA cup would be achievable after 2 seasons, 3 at the very most.

Was I being naive, or did I allow myself to get caught up in the 'hype' coming from VP?

I don't think that "challenging ManU day in and day out" is the same as the UEFA Cup being achievable in season 2 or 3 NEITS. We are aiming to improve each season. 10 - 7 would represent that in this year 2 and that might just give us UEFA Cup qualification, further progress in year 3 surely would give us that qualification and by the end of year 5 we would hope to be "challenging ManU day in and day out". It won't be easy and there will be times when the task looks more than we can manage but I trust Martin, Randy and the staff at B6 to get us back up where we belong, we just need to hold our nerve and enjoy the white knuckle ride! :winkold:

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However, the financial data contrasting Aston Villa's football staff spend -v- other Prem clubs was on public record until Randy Lerner's acquisition last year. Current comparisons therefore have to be conjectural; there is no alternative. We now never hear or see anything officially from the Club about any finances (which is your prerogative).

This is an important point I feel. I too, after hearing of GB's pay rise also assumed that this would represent the top end of what we would pay. I still do kinda assume that. Can't see us paying any new signing 60-70k or whatever... But nice to know there is no set limit

Interesting pieces Peter, felt the General was a little harsh!

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NEITS said:

The one thing I will say is, as a fan, I never "expected" to have to wait "4 or 5 seasons" to get into Europe. I thought the UEFA cup would be achievable after 2 seasons, 3 at the very most.

Was I being naive, or did I allow myself to get caught up in the 'hype' coming from VP?

I don't think that "challenging ManU day in and day out" is the same as the UEFA Cup being achievable in season 2 or 3 NEITS. We are aiming to improve each season. 10 - 7 would represent that in this year 2 and that might just give us UEFA Cup qualification, further progress in year 3 surely would give us that qualification and by the end of year 5 we would hope to be "challenging ManU day in and day out". It won't be easy and there will be times when the task looks more than we can manage but I trust Martin, Randy and the staff at B6 to get us back up where we belong, we just need to hold our nerve and enjoy the white knuckle ride! :winkold:

To "challenge" for UEFA cup qualification does in my world mean to ensure we are Top 10 material, with the possibility of getting into that top six or seven that get's qualification. I think around 60 points would be required, maybe even less. Considering we achieved 50 points last year, it's no giant step to "challenge" for the UEFA cup, if you by the word "challenge" means you are considered to have a fair chance of reaching that particular goal. To have a squad with enough quality that, in worst case, will qualify for the UEFA cup is of course another matter.

We are just a couple of players away from being in a position where we can say we are realistcly "challenging" for the UEFA cup by using my definition of the word.

If we break it down like this:

Teams 1-6 - average 2 points (home and away combined, 3-3-6 as an example)

Teams 7-12 - average 3 points (home and away combined, 5-3-4 as an example)

Teams 13-19 - average 4 points (home and away combined, 8-4-2 as an example )

That would mean we finish the season with stats like these: P 38 W16 D10 L12

Which would mean we would end up with 58 points. Don't come tell me that this is far from achieveable already this season.

I certainly don't expect us to get CL qualification at the end of the season, but I expect an improvement in terms of the number of points we end up with.

As I have said earlier, I think the number of points we achieve is a more realistic indicator of our progress than instead just looking at the league position. We don't influence the results of other teams unless they play us. In DOL's first season we achieved 56 points and were only four points short of CL. In MON's first season we achieved only six points less, but were 18 points of the last CL spot.

My expectation for this season is 60 points. With the apparent willingness of our board to back our manager with substantial funds, it's really down to MON to deliver. If we find we end up with less points due to a mismatch between MON's view on player values and the market's valuation, I think the responsibility should rest with MON for not doing his homework properly.

MON need, in my opinion to spend the last week of this window, and the January window to make sure we have enough players. That way we can focus on a couple of real top quality players next summer which will make us even more likely to achieve our goals, I think we will be in a fine position. But I expect us to "challenge" for UEFA by getting 60 points this season already. And I wouldn't mind a couple of more players in next week that will make fans and present and future sponsors happy. We need to build on the positive view everyone seems to have at the moment.

But of course, this is entierly of topic :-) So let me just add that I think it's a good thing we don't have a wage cap.

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Mmm, one thing i will have to add to this debate is that though we may not have an 'official' cap on wages, i'm sure the wages of one of our top players is going to act as a guideline for what we will pay other players who are playing for us, or potentially going to play for us. This indeed would seem entirely rational, indeed to go against it, i.e., to pay players that we don't rate as highly, more, would seem to be totally irrational. The General then can in all truthfulness come out and say there is no official cap, while in all reality the wages of our top player, is going to be the guiding rule in what we pay other players. I think we should always be aware of such semantics when statements are made such as this.

Something i posted in the previous thread on this, but seemed to be completely ignored, but i think is important, so i will say again, was that MON came out last season and said he wanted to change the wage structure of the team. Indeed part of what he said is that he wanted to move away from the basic flat wage structure to a more performance related pay scheme. Such a scheme rewards for success and means players have to really put their all in to training, and playing and winning matches. I am in totall agreement with this idea, though how much certain players would be is another question. I think in our history, and also the history of many other clubs, there have been too many players that are content to just turn up to training and pick up a fat wage cheque every week. With the kind of wage structure that has been suggested, such players would seriously miss out financially, and either wouldn't want to come to the club, which is good, or if they are alreay here, would want to leave, which is also good. We only want people at this club that are prepared to put their all in to the club.

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