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The General's thread - do not respond to other posts!

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Don't ask Villa fans General if they think his team tonight was CRACKERS ask the ITV pundits on television who couldn't stop talking about it. He has disgraced us, and we've gone out the cup with a whimper. I've never been so angry with a Villa team selection/raise the white flag exercise!

GUTTED

His support is rock bottom once more. Not due to the defeat but due to the inevitability of it when we drop all our star performers. It's like United turning up with Rooney, Berbatov, Nani & Vidic on the bench and wondering why they lost.

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General,

I had the indignity of standing at Anfield whilst the team I love put in a gutless performance and then had to watch the manager of the team I love lord it in front of the Kop whilst ignoring me and 1800 other fans of the club he manages. I had the indignity of being at Eastlands in December whilst the team I love gave a gutless display whilst the manager sat looking like a clueless, disinterested old man. Tonight I had the indignity to again be at Eastlands whilst the manager of the team I love threw in the towel before a ball had been kicked with his outrageous team selection.

Two questions General,

1.) my 12 year old daughter asked me at the game tonight why have we made so many changes and not given ourselves the best chance of winning? I spent the 2 hour drive back pondering this but I still couldn't answer her. Can you help?

2.) I have tickets to Bolton on Saturday, now given that it is likely a number of the players will be extremely demoralised with the managers action tonight in conceding the game before kick off, do you think its likely we will get a positive result or should I expect what is more the rule than the exception under Houllier and for us to again roll over?

Mark

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General,

Do you think our managers decisions tonight, have put the club in a good light or a bad one?

And

If we have no interest in competing in certain competitions, why bother entering them in the first place?

And

Is it right for a Manager to say one thing to the fans, and then do the complete opposite?

And

What words would you like to say to the poor sods whom travelled to Manchester this evening, with hope in their hearts, only to be mugged of those hopes by the clubs Manager?

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General, very disappointed tonight. Me and a few others travelled up to Manchester with hope that we could progress to the quarter finals and maybe even get to Wembley again. It was not to be, and we lost. OK, fair enough, you win some you lose some. But as fans, having to book a whole day off work, risk getting stranded in Manchester for a night and spend a whole day's wages to watch THAT - is just not acceptable. The team selection confuses me more than angers me. Why would you play a weakened side against Man City away? Can the team not cope with the world class powers of Bolton flippin Wanderers? Do you have any idea why Houllier's comments pre-game in regards to us going to win, Man City away being the lowest point of his career et al. were completely in correlation to anything I and 3500 other Villa fans saw tonight? It's just not good enough General and it's not very often I say this but Houllier, tonight, was clueless. I'm angry. If it wasn't for good company with the great fans we have then tonight would have been a complete waste of time and money and I'm already beginning to think it was.

Please pass this message on to Houllier:

Do you know the majority of Villa Talk and infact Villa fans in general slave away on minimum wage and unpaid overtime to go to Villa games?

Just a thought.

Thanks.

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I could understand Moscow i really could we were chasing 4th the squad was tired going into the final third of the season. But i couldn't understand last night at all. What do we have to play for? Is he not confident in staying up? HAS THIS CLUB NOT LEARNED ANYTHING?

I was just starting to warm to Gerard, and it feels like he's just punched me in the face.

Put it this way, i doubt i shall be attending a cup match for a while.

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General,

Why do we keep hiring managers that give up on cup competitions?

Ill still be there next season with my season ticket but I can understand people if they dont. Why do we just give up?

Think you and Randy are doing a great job though and love having you at the club. I think its hard to sum up in words how dissapointed I was after last nights performance. To just give up like that? Astonishing.

Up the Villa.

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Try explaining our managers' decision to a couple of eight year olds, sat watching in their Villa shirts.

What has happened to our game???

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General,

How come our Manager can blame the players for "giving up" during the league game away at Man City, when he obviously gave up BEFORE the game yesterday?

Regards

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General I am not going to comment on the specifics of last night or ask a question on that.

A while back , though, you described the job that Houllier was doing as "remarkable". Do you still think he is doing a remarkable job? Or how would you describe it now?

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General,

On a serious note now, I took my Dad to this game, he previously came to the Blackburn game last week and was impressed with what he saw. So I take him to City to maybe try and convert him from being a united fan.. he said if he knew GH would play the 3rd team he wouldn't have bothered going and I agreed with him. If GH was planning on playing the 3rd team why did he not hint at this in interviews etc?

Im serious here - is there anychance of a refund for my tickets from last night as I cant believe that you guys expect us to pay to watch that?

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as previously requested, there's several pages on last night - enough for Gen K to understand people's views. The point has been made

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General,

I am still fuming after last night's cowardly concession of the game and lack of apology, or even an attempt at justification of team selection, from our manager but I think you have got the message loud and clear by now.

I do not expect you to answer this but I will ask anyway, do you believe that in light of last night's debacle that our manager will be able to persuade our best player, who is rumoured to be wanted by every 'big' club in this country, to sign a new contract in the summer? Can Ash believe anything Gerard tells him after last night's lies?

I really thought we were turning the corner when we signed Bent (please thank Randy for his continued investment, Christ knows where we would be without him) but Gerard has lost all the support and momentum generated with the sacrifice of the game and comments last night.

Still dismayed and disgusted,

Bully

p.s If Ged has a family wedding in France the weekend of the quarter finals or even just fancied some time off in March, Cheltenham is fast approaching, can you let us know. At least we would be able to understand a little bit why he made his decisions last night.

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General, getting away from the Houllier debate, read their is a dispute from MON and it will be going to the Premier League arbitration panel.

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Hi General,

I hope this doesn't get missed amongst all the spleen venting, but I was wondering if our media team are aware of 'City TV'? They are a new company who are looking to aquire TV licences in five cities across the UK - they will be based in Birmingham and we will be amongst the initial five cities.

Could be a potential new channel for the club, both in terms of advertising and providing original content - they are looking at providing up to six hours of live programming per day to begin with.

PM me if you want more details.

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General

You will have got the message loud and clear from the previous few pages re the fan's general dissatisfaction in the team selection last night. I was also at COMS and was very frustrated by Gerrard's actions. I can understand his thought process, although I, like most, wholeheartedly disagree with this approach, but I have three ancillary points:

1. Why are the fans not told beforehand that such a game will be used to utilise the squad, thus giving us a chance to select to go or not with full knowledge and appropriate expectations?

2. I think such a decision could also be detrimental to future attendances in cup competitions as we will all be thinking what's the point of spending money on earlier rounds when we always seem to prioritise and lie down when we come up against difficult games?

3. On a broader commercial point, does the club not believe that such actions will hurt our commercial ambitions. If I were a TV scheduler I would probably steer away from Villa cup games in the future and if I were a young neutral potential fan growing up in this area I would probably be looking at supporting the Blues after their efforts in the Carling Cup in front of an Aston Villa team that lies down and accepts defeat (and I hated saying this!).

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General, is it possible if you could simply state whether Martin O'Neill has taken Villa to the arbitration panel, or if the club are the ones who have brought the charges?

Many thanks for yours and Randy's continued support of our great club, you've done wonders.

Many thanks,

Matt.

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Hi General.

I hope the mods don't delete this post (as you've had endless gripes on last nights game) but I feel it's most valid point.

I've been a consistent season ticket holder for the last 9 years and on and off for the 7 years prior attending almost every game anyway. I'm also a cup scheme and an away scheme member for the past 6 years, again attending all but 2 to 3 away games a season (usually midweek games due to work commitments).

As you can see I spend £000's on the club every year and will continue to do so (unlike some) for the rest of my life because as they say "Villa till I Die"

I earn £22000 a year so not a huge amount and must spend £3000 a year on the Villa inc tickets,travel etc etc.

I'm in no financial position to waste money but as my Wife will confirm.. I put the Villa before most things in my life.

However last night's team selection has cost me over £120 and want to know If the club or Mr Houllier himself will reimburse me In any way ?

Last night cost me..

£22.50 - Match ticket.

£60 - Half a days wages as I had to take it unpaid.

£25 - Petrol money.

£5 - Parking.

£15 - Food & drink.

Also the £50 I bet on Villa as I really fancied us to win. The game was hyped up by Mr Houllier and how we were going there to win and the 4-0 defeat hurt and wont happen again (all on AVFC website) I thought money on Villa tonight after the Blackburn win......... What a mug I am not waiting for the team sheet - But who would have thought he'd field the reserves ??

If I'd have known Mr Houllier was going to field our reserve team I wouldn't have gone to the game as I can watch them for free every week !!

I honestly feel (& I think most fans will agree) we should be reimbursed in some way ? I was one of the sorry bunch who also attended Eastlands for the Dec humiliation but had really high hopes this time around as the team have improved greatly since them and In superb form.

I look forward to hearing from you Sir.

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General I would implore you not to take the uproar too seriously. I am aware that I may be in the minority but I realise our priority is Premier League safety (AS IT SHOULD BE!) and that we are in a season of transition. I am fully behind the manager and board at the moment and I think we will get it right! We are on the way!

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