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A New Season? Oh, Great!


blandy
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VillaTalk member "villa89" isn't exactly overflowing with the "joys" of the coming season, in the way that he used to be. Here he explains why not.

Well a new season is about to dawn on us and its the one I am least looking forward to in as long as I can remember. We have a new manager with, in my opinion, a mediocre record at best. We have a squad that's not likely to improve much over the summer. A. Young, Friedel and NRC have left and I'm sure they will be replaced with some new faces. The reality though is that when the first ball is kicked next season we will be no better than the squad that started last season. So what can we look forward to, another mid-table finish? Hope for a soft cup draw so we can sneak into a semi-final? Forgive me if none of those options fill me with excitement.

So what can be done? Is there a magic strategy than can get us into the top four or challenging for silverware regularly? Sadly, No there isn't. Football currently is a pseudo-monopoly. The big clubs get the big revenue from TV, Champions league, Merchandise, Sugar Daddy owners, etc. and this allows them to pay the big wages which gets them the best players. They can take the best players from other teams at will, which has two very beneficial results, they improve their own team with good players and they weaken the opposition at the same time. Sure the transfer fees can help smaller clubs, the X million we got for Ashley Young or James Milner is great for the club. But one off transfer fees don't allow you to pay big wages. For that you need constant, reliable income, from say a stroll through a champions’ league group or millions of jersey sales or a sheikh bankrolling a constant loss.

The Sky hype for the new season will be even bigger, even better and contain even more presenters and commentators shouting for no reason! I wonder what else will be on? The NFL, hopefully. There we have a game that, while not perfect, is actually pretty well run. There's a salary cap and a franchise tag system which allows teams to keep their star players and a draft system which give the poorer teams at least a chance to get better. In football there's no chance. The gap between top and bottom is so great that we have teams playing reserve sides in supposedly competitive league games. Next season will be an all too predictable fight between Manchester United and Chelsea for the title, how boring. I'm sure there'll be more Grand Slam Sunday's with the top sides in the country battling for a champion’s league spot that we all know they'll get anyway. Oh wait, that's really boring too.

From a villa point of view I have been trying my best to come up with a solution to allow us to progress from a mid-table also ran. We could buy lots of young English players but any young English player we take a risk on seems to be snapped up by other teams. If they are any good they get taken by the "big" teams or else they are an expensive waste of money. We could go into the foreign markets and take risks on players but for every Gianfranco Zola there's an Afonso Alves. Again even if these foreign signings pay off, any good player that we find will be snapped up by a club offering the lure of the almost mythical champion’s league.

Depressed yet? I know I am. Will I follow Villa next season? Yes. Will I watch the games every week? Yes. Will I check VillaTalk for all the latest news? Yes. Will I care? ... ... hmmm ... ... I guess that's the million dollar question. I'm not sure I will. Certainly not as much as I used to. It’s sad but in my defence it’s not my fault. I want to care. I want to love football as much as I used to but I can't. I can't watch Gerrard diving like Tom Daley while commentators call him England's greatest. I can’t listen to Jamie Redknapp’s not so in depth analysis or Alan Shearer’s … or Alan Shearer. I can no longer love a game that's ruled by the almighty dollar. A game who's guardians stand by while businessmen rape and pillage with wanton abandon all at the expense of the fans. The real sad thing is that it’s not going to change anytime soon.

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Goodish thread mate..

And Aston Villa's answer to all that was Alex McLeish!....

Yet,

A young competitive manager with a bit of vision, flair and style it could have been so different.. We will never compete money wise with the sky 4..But we can compete if we get a young Arsene Wenger type manager at the club. A manager that can see what is needed in tomorrow's game and not today's.. A manager thats a step ahead on coaching, scouting, playing style etc.. A futuristic coach and trainer is whats needed to take Villa into the sky 4.. Look at what Mourinho achieved at Porto, look at Boas and what he achieved.. Far more than Chelsea or Man City with their billions, proves it can be done..

How good would Lyon be had they not be a selling club to the rich? They can churn out the future starts season upon season...Why arnt we?(answer is above)..

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I can no longer love a game that's ruled by the almighty dollar. A game who's guardians stand by while businessmen rape and pillage with wanton abandon all at the expense of the fans. The real sad thing is that it’s not going to change anytime soon.

Indeed.

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Totally agree with the first post

I suspect that age plays a part in jading one's view but I have felt myself steadily falling out of love with the game for a number of years.

Ellis' dithering, self-interest and Victorian business values meant that that we missed the boat when Sky first came on the scene, and it's been down hill ever since - Murdoch's millions, Champions League carve ups, the Russian Mafia laundering its ill-gotten gains all meant that we fell further and further behind the big boys.

When Randy came along there was that brief hope that we might start to catch up but the Oily Sheikhs and a resurgent Spurs seem to have ruined any hope of us being in serious contention any time soon.

Maybe it's worse for a club like Villa? Most teams know that they have no real chance of ever competing in the league and aspiring to Europe - Villa, like Newcastle, Leeds and perhaps Everton, know that, in a game which has become all about economics and market forces, they should be getting some of the action, but past errors and the good fortune of some others mean that they have no way to bridge the gap.

Do I care? - yes, but the die has already been cast and I don't care half as much as I used to

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Blandy,

I certainly agree that money men have spoilt the game from what it was when I first watching football close to 40 years ago. I don't like the fact that money has taken away loyalty in the game and we are unlikely see too many Steve Bulls' in the game staying loyal to a club. I believe it will get worse before it gets better and players continuing to be mercenaries and playing for the highest bidder. It is truly a shame that that many can't play for the love of the game anymore.

What I don't understand is you saying you don't know if you will care anymore. For me football will be more to me than who plays and manages Aston Villa. Football is something that is engrained in me from the day I first saw it and no amount of money or poor decision making could ever take it away. I start playing football over 35 years ago and as I soon will be entering my 42th year I still play with the gusto of a teenager. I started coaching soccer in my mid twenties when I was playing semi pro back in the UK and it allows me to give back to the young and old alike and the Villa and the love of the game as allowed me to do that. No amount of Gerrard dives or oil billions will ever take away or stop what football as given to me.

Do I want Villa to be Champions? of course. Do I get upset when they lose? of course but in the end I love to watch them play even though it's on TV these days. The excitement and sadness whatever it may be on any given day only wants me want it more. My three children growing up in the US I feel they will miss some of what I have because of the fan passion and energy they will miss not growing up in the UK did so all I say to all the fans is don't let things you don't agree with stop you enjoying love the Villa and the game. For we are the chosen ones and support the GREATEST TEAM IN THE WORLD.

UTV.

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Money has no doubt ruined the game. Man City becoming a plaything for some arabs was what ultimatly destroyed my interest.

It doesn't really matter what we do, whitin our means we will never be fighting for the title again. But I found out i didn't envy Man City. Their fans, used to relegations and never winning anything, now has to defend everything that is wrong with football. And how fun would it actually be to support a club that is somebody's toy?

Would we be really happy with Bill Gates as our owner? Playing our games at PowerPoint Park? Watching some of the best players in the world playing for a club they didn't care about, only for money? For me the answer is no.

Do I support Villa? Yes, and I have done so since 1979. Now I know the only way we can win anything is by selling our soul to some megarich investors. If that happens, I'm sure he will spend a billion to make us successfull. Would I enjoy a trophy, knowing the only reason we won it was money? Maybe, but probably not.

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Villa always got pinched, but as stated, a lot of players are bought purely so the competition doesn't have them. Ashley Young to united is a stupid buy from ferguson, but it's better to have him then let him terrorise you in a blue shirt.

The premiership is an utter farce. Football is no longer a game of skill but a game of wealth. My best mate is a Leeds supporter and he said it's never been better being in the championship, the team is a team that sticks together and they fight it out every week. Real football is not in the premiership and I honestly believe there has never been a strong case to have a break away European Super League. Let the rich boys go and play their own game, leave football to the rest of us.

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Villa always got pinched, but as stated, a lot of players are bought purely so the competition doesn't have them. Ashley Young to united is a stupid buy from ferguson, but it's better to have him then let him terrorise you in a blue shirt.

The premiership is an utter farce. Football is no longer a game of skill but a game of wealth. My best mate is a Leeds supporter and he said it's never been better being in the championship, the team is a team that sticks together and they fight it out every week. Real football is not in the premiership and I honestly believe there has never been a strong case to have a break away European Super League. Let the rich boys go and play their own game, leave football to the rest of us.

There is something to be said for being competitive in a lower league and striving for the title, against being an nonentity in the Premiership.

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