Many would consider him a pantomime villain but, in my opinion, Paul Faulkner is winning Villa fans over every day.
Paul Faulkner is the main man at Aston Villa while Randy Lerner is in the States. He’s pulled off a number of transfer deals with Paul Lambert and has made a number of significant cash deals which will benefit the club financially in years to come. Many wouldn’t have put money on him getting them deals over the line, even if you were lucky enough to get the William Hill promo here. But I am sure a few would have been lucky enough too.
Formerly a ‘relationship manager’ for MBNA, Faulkner has played a significant part in this culture switch and has always been active since he arrived at the club.
I have been critical in the past of the 34-year-old CEO’s activity at the club, ranging from the O’Neill era to the appointment of Alex McLeish. However, from speaking to close members of the Aston Villa family such as fellow writers and supporters, it seems Paul Faulkner’s vision on how the club should be run is totally different to what Mr Lerner wants.
Lerner is very much a man who wants results now whereas Paul Faulkner’s aim is to build the club with a huge global reputation. Some day, he hopes to see the team competing with the big boys again, putting Villa back where the club belongs.
Faulkner has struck numerous important deals, including the recent Turkish Airlines deal which now sees the airline in partnership with the club. His dealings with Paul Lambert have seen him allow the Scotsman to do as he pleases: it is accepted that reputation means nothing and both men want the lads to have hunger and fight when they are wearing the famous claret and blue. Paul Faulkner’s vision, with Lambert in charge, sees the club going in a financially sound direction and allows young lads the chance to play in the best league in the world.
Since my public apology, I have had the opportunity to speak to Paul Faulkner. He has signalled that the plans Villa have started to put in place over the past few months will bear fruit and will put the club in a really strong position to enjoy sustained, and sustainable, success in the years ahead.
I will end by echoing what I said last week: with Paul Faulkner and Paul Lambert steering the ship, we are not only going in the right direction on the field but also off it. I for one am excited by the plans both Pauls have in place and will look forward to seeing how those plans unfold in the near future.
*Please note, this article is the opinion of the writer and not that of Avillafan.com