Dipping in and out of Sky Sports News on Monday, you would have been forgiven for thinking that the Villans are doing okay at the moment, when the truth is we aren’t. While the media focus on Arsenal, Liverpool and Spurs being in ‘crisis’, we don’t even get a mention. I certainly wish we had the aforementioned clubs’ problems.

The text below, which appeared on Football 365.com, did little to appease my Villa-related Monday blues:

“Aston Villa got a much-needed point at West Ham on Saturday, but no surprises that it was achieved through a 0-0 draw. It’s now five goals in 11 league matches this season. The goals in their last seven matches read 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 1, 0. I think that’s a binary translation of ‘TEDIUM’.

You have to feel sorry for Villa’s travelling support. They’ve seen their side score five goals in their last 14 away matches in all competitions. January 18 was the last time they scored more than once on the road.

Because we’re all about helping others at F365, a little tip for Villa fans to beat the traffic: Leave the match after 50 minutes. Villa haven’t scored in the last 40 minutes of any away game in 2014.”

In normal circumstances that battling 0-0 draw at West Ham would be a good result, as the Hammers are riding the crest of a wave at the moment. We were expected to lose – but we are still drowning. We were fortunate: some decisions, the Hammers’ missed chances and Guzan enjoying one of his brilliant days between the sticks worked in our favour. I do sometimes feel that fortune avoids us so a bit of luck makes a welcome change. The boys may have earned a good point in the midst of a very bad run; to many Villa fans, it was just another goalless game.

It now seems increasingly likely that Fabian Delph and Ron Vlaar will go on to earn their fortunes elsewhere. In some ways, I can’t blame them. In other ways, I would be seething if they do leave Aston Villa Football Club. I could almost accept Vlaar’s departure but losing Delph would be up there with the loss of Barry for me. What annoys me most is that I doubt they would be replaced with players of sufficient quality, if at all. Why on earth did the club’s officials allow two of our best players to get into this situation? Should these contracts not have not been sorted in the summer of 2013? Why do we have to wait until players have a year to run on their contracts before we start negotiating? We are lucky that Jack Grealish loves the club.

At the heart of any negotiations would be our new CEO, Tom Fox. Since hearing from him when we were in the upper echelons of the League and on a good run, it’s all gone quiet. I would hope that he is concerned by our recent record, having come in from the outside, because what is going on at Villa Park has become standard practice for the insiders.

In previous seasons, I have always thought we had enough to stay up. However, this woeful run has opened my eyes and I am very worried now. I don’t mind losing but the way we approach games and the lack of any goal-scoring threat is completely unacceptable.

I have been more than patient with Paul Lambert and still really want him to succeed. With each passing week, that is looking more and more unlikely. Some of his tactics baffle me: bringing Clark on and going to five at the back at the weekend nearly cost us a point.

Friends who support other teams always say that “Villa will be alright”. I used to say that about Wigan, a club that seemed to get out of trouble every season, until, eventually, the Latics dropped. We are not Wigan. We are Aston Villa. It really should not be like this.

For all the “problems” Arsenal, Liverpool and Spurs face, it’s the Villans who have the real ones. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that we have anyone to solve them – but I’d love to be wrong about that.



  1. I agree in truth but would say;
    1. Lambert vs spurs and benteke sent off subbed on gabby as an attacking move. It failed (although not a bad idea). With this in mind maybe decided to introduce Clark vs west ham.
    2. Player commitment is still good.
    3. Results. No one can argue goal scoring has been chronic. But results this season in isolation have been reasonably OK. QPR away is no simple thing as they’re proving now. We played the top teams and I think taken into account Lambert deserves 5 more games to demonstrate exactly where we are. If we win one confidence could lift us. The likes of Gabby and CNZ are confidence players. Then benteke and delph will return and Minor too. Cleverley will ultimately replace delph and vlaar had long recovery from calf injuries when realistically we need seniors in defence to consistently play.

    I’m still torn over Lambert because no one ever likes a sacking of a decent guy but I do fear he’s retreated into an entrenched ultra defence and needs a very good run to turn the corner significantly for the club that we love so much.

  2. Having spoken on a lot of these forums its clear there is massive dissent building against Lambert

    I too have in the past understood the problems he has faced and stood up for him mostly but when Benteke comes back its the most crucial 5 or 6 games he will ever face, mostly against the poorer sides in the league and we know how well we play against them, cough etc

    In my eyes he is a dead man walking, but I understand giving him to Christmas, but i will say despite the crucial injuries and bans I see some players getting better, new players now settling in, some players returning after injury, or just not picked, but all new or returning have made made costly mistakes.
    but the last 3 games for me have shown me enough to be optimistic,,, its just i cant be bothered with lamberts tactics any more,, its like we have all been punched in the face for 3 years,, just sick of it
    this squad is capable of more,, i just hope he proves me right

  3. Is it me or are you having sympathy for lamberts situation …..I wanted him to prove me wrong last season this season I just want him to leave ,not all of what is happening at our club is his fault but on the pitch yes it’s all his fault when he had the interview for the position of manager I’m sure he had a grand vision of where he could take this club under his guidance a view Lerner and Faulkner shard and bought into in an instant , well it’s not working it’s slowly but surly dying .
    Sure he’s spent money on some good and some not so good players sure we’ve had some very good results but that pales in comparison to the garbage that’s been produced week in and week out ,he doesn’t believe in stats but these speak for themselves our position in the league doesn’t lie .All of this is his doing his players his tactics (ha tactics) his team formations his responsibility he is accountable , giving him another five game will be the death of this club with no time to bring in a new manager and no time to assess the team with January right on top of the club .
    So for me it’s do or die sack him now or don’t piss and moan when the axe falls just before Christmas because it will and we will be in deep deep trouble oh and one more think when you post don’t contradict yourself by wanting to back him only to say he will be sacked .
    We do have some good individual players but we are not a team and that’s lambert s fault
    Sack him now

  4. Villa really backed themselves into a corner.

    If results continue to slide by Crimbo, any potential new manager needs time.
    Unless he can work Gus Poyet miracles in relegation dog fight situation.

    Question remains what action Villa take regarding Lambert.

    Really hurts to see my club suffer. We weren’t always struggling like this.

  5. Hatred of the manager , hatred of the owner when will it end ? Why the claims that recent times are so different to all the other years of nothingness since Villa won the European cup over 40 years ago ?
    Is it that they feel cheated over the false dawn of the early years of Lerners ownership or is it just a sign of how modern society is ?
    Lerner has put a lot of money into Villa even if there are a few seemingly with their own agenddas who claim otherwise . But money spent in the early years went a lot further then than now , and one only has to look at clubs such as Rangers or Leeds to see how spending ones way out of trouble does not work
    And TV money & the fairplay rules it would seem work against clubs such as Villa . And it’s easy to say that DD would not sanction the run of poor performances that have blighted the club of late but he never poured in the money that Randy has .
    It’s easy to look at small clubs like Southampton with envy as they ride high in the table and say that should be Villa . So why is it not Villa after all we are a big club . And that is the problem Villa is a big club which for decades has been run as a small club on a shoestring budget . DD had realised that when he sold to Lerner who was not the highest bidder but offered the most in real terms , But even Lerner himself admits mistakes have been made . The cuts in finance to cure the debt crisis the club found it self in after it overspent trying to get into those CL places were too drastic , and Lambert has been put into an impossible possition with fans looking else where complaining that they want the success others have .
    It seems a long time ago since the early games of this season when Villa were riding high in the league but the end of the season is much further off with 17 more games to play , Can things be turned round ? Well we need to find a goal scorer if that is to happen But with both our strikers out and our other forwards not prolific in their goal scoring where are those goals to come from ? Easy to blame the manager than the money men and medics who gambled on both our cheif goal scorers being back & playing long before now . But nothing can be done to solve this problem for another 7 weeks when the transfer window opens and we can see if our new CEO can bring in the players Lambert needs

  6. Lerner is wrong if he thinks the best idea is to keep Vlaar and Delph in January. They then go for nothing 4 months later. Shrewd business Randy. Has he no idea the unsettling effect two wantaway players can have in the dressing room. That’s when our two superstars are actually fit enough to be in the dressing room which ain’t very often. Why not swap Delph for Andros? Sell Vlaar and buy another C/H from Belgium or Holland and turn him into a star just like we did with these two. Get Gardner back off loan and give him a run.
    Oh and yes Mr Fox next time we give players contracts out make sure they work in our favour not theirs.

    • yes but your assuming that what the press is saying is true and that the 2 have not signed their new contracts coz they want away . But is that true or could it be that there are other factors delaying their signatures , as after all Both are currently injured !
      As for our new CEO surely he already has a lot more experience of the world of footie than the former banking PR man who held the post before him , and will do the best for the club , as after all that;s what he’s been recruited to do

  7. Yes, but you’re assuming that what the press is saying, is untrue, and that they are making it up, and ignoring the fact that both players are injured, and the comments from Delph, and Vlaar’s agent are also lies.

    As for our new CEO, I’m sure his commercial role at Arsenal, 8 years at Pepsico pushing Gatorade, 2 years at Nike, and a couple of years at Wasserman media group, will stand him in good stead at pulling in a few more quid for Randy, which will be best for the club, as for buying players for Lambert? That’s a completely new role for him, he will have to be very Foxy in that alien role.


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