On Thursday, we sealed our first signing of the summer transfer window – Philippe Senderos. The former Arsenal man is an experienced if rather unimpressive acquisition who can supposedly do a job. If there is a positive to take from the signing of Senderos it is that his arrival will almost certainly mean that Ciaran Clark and Nathan Baker’s playing time will be restricted next season.
Yesterday, it was reported that we had been turned down by recently released Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand. However, more details emerged later in the day and it appears that Villa officials had merely checked his situation with his agent, which was a relief as more aging mediocrity is not what Aston Villa Football Club needs.
Now that Senderos is officially an Aston Villa player, three of our players will feature in the World Cup in Brazil. In 2010, we had three players in the England squad alone. How times have changed. It is not a time to dwell on what might have been as we should use the World Cup as an opportunity to look carefully at some international players. It certainly won’t be hard to find good players but persuading them to join an ailing Aston Villa could prove more difficult.
We seem set to keep hold of Christian Benteke due to his untimely injury towards the end of the season but we need more players of similar quality. We are constantly being given the impression that Paul Lambert doesn’t have any funds to improve his current squad but this has been contradicted to an extent by the signing of Senderos, who will be on at least £30,000 per week. Although the likes of Lescott and Barry, players who should not be wildly out of our league, are available, the fact that Aston Villa Football Club can’t offer competitive wages is a joke in itself.
Roy Keane has been talking to Villa about potentially taking on the role of assistant manager this week too, which has sparked considerable debate among fans. He is a man many would love to see at the club while there are just as many who think his arrival would be a catastrophe. Personally, I believe that any change is good and Roy Keane may drum some discipline into the players and, with a bit of luck, teach our midfielders a thing or two.
To say we’re heading anywhere near the right direction would be a complete lie. However, at least Paul Lambert knows that he has to improve some elements of the team and the acquisition of Senderos shows that he can see our frailties.
In the absence of any new developments regarding the sale of the club, we can but hope that we are going to be looking at other players of quality – and not just on free transfers.