Villa crash out of the League Cup as the club get it wrong off the field.. Again.

Aston Villa crashed out of the League Cup at the third round stage following a 1-2 defeat to Everton at Villa Park last night.

Goals from James Garder and Dominic Calvert-Lewin were enough to put the Toffee’s name in the hat for the next round despite a goal seven minutes from time from Boubacar Kamara.

Usually, I would use this space to talk about the game but I am not going to go too much into it purely because I felt that the game was lost before it had even begun.

Some would argue it was down to the team selection and maybe they have a point but for me, as one of the supporters who stayed away, I felt it had a negative vibe leading into the game.

Ticket Pricing

In previous seasons, Aston Villa season ticket holders would have been given free access to the game as part of their package but this season the club decided against this option.

Instead, fans would have to purchase a ticket with prices ranging between £30.50 – £42.50. With a reported attendance of a little over 23,000, supporters kept their money in their wallets and voted with their feet.

And to put into perspective how badly the club got it wrong, around 4,500 of those inside the stadium were from Merseyside.

Regardless of what people will say about FFP when Newcastle United sells tickets for £15 with 50% off food in the concourse against Premier League and Champions League winners Manchester City, it highlights just how wrong those within the club got it wrong.

Off-the-field antics

This is the latest in a number of off-the-field issues surrounding Aston Villa this season. You could talk about the new Terrace View or the more recent announcement about the Lower Grounds (formally the Holte Suite). Or we could even discuss how poor the concourses have become on all four corners of the ground.

Those who regularly listen to the AVillaFan Podcast will have heard the views of Aston Villa supporters so I won’t bore you and go into detail with it all but I will have my say.

I don’t care if the club wants to make more money with new corporate areas. I guess whether I agree with it or not, it’s part and parcel of the modern game.

What I do care about is the club charging more money for a season ticket or match day ticket only to have the worst experience inside the ground I have ever had in my 25+ years of being a season ticket holder.

Warm drinks, long queues, a packed concourse, wires hanging out of ceilings and even flooded toilets BEFORE kick-off. It’s disgusting and quite frankly unacceptable.

How can a club that seems to be moving in the right direction on the field be getting it so badly wrong off the field? I personally believe had there been another 10,000 supporters in that ground last night the club would have made more money (even with lower ticket prices) and we may have seen a different performance and possibly more positive result on the night.

I take nothing away from Everton who deserve to win and progress to the next round but I can’t help but feel another decision by the club has just cost us an opportunity of winning some silverware for the first time since 1996.

Off the field, Aston Villa Football Club must be better. There are no excuses!

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