When we awaken tomorrow morning, there will be only 5 weeks left until the 2013/2014 Barclays Premier League season gets underway and at this moment in time there is only really one matter which is dominating conversations regarding our great club. Christian Benteke.
It was all going so well as well due to the fact that 6 new signings had been made, the youngest and brightest had committed their futures to Villa Park and all we needed was for the Belgian beast to do the same and we would have all been sitting on our version of cloud nine. But alas, modern day football has a funny way of changing emotions and causing a stir whenever it see’s fit.
Eris Kismet, the man tasked with the challenge of guiding Benteke and giving him the best possible chance of featuring at next summer’s world cup, has now taken it upon himself to decide which club the big man should go to and has this week himself ruled Chelsea out the running for his signature, a wise or foolish move? Rumours have also been circulating too that he wanted a higher salary for Benteke than the one that Villa were prepared to offer, but then again its not like modern day footballers to be greedy now is it..
The worst thing for me about this whole situation is not the fact that he wants to leave, I never really believed he would stay to be honest, but its the fact that now seems to think that we owe him something and we should just stand by, sell him for whatever the first offer is and make sure that he is made to look like the good one in all of this. However, we have a manager and a chairman who we all know are accustomed to alienating and excluding players from the team if their head isn’t in the right place. Christian Benteke may have made a right mug of himself this week and could have ruined his own world cup dream before it even started.
Lets just imagine that Chelsea aren’t interested and that Tottenham or any other team for that matter are not prepared to pay the reported £25million fee which we have placed on his head, what will he do then? Of course he could still come out of this in a positive light, all he would need to do is find a new agent, make a public apology and pledge his future to Villa and begin to repay the faith that we showed in him to give him his big chance in the first place.
Alternatively, he could continue to throw his toys out the pram and enjoy training with Barry Bannan, Stephen Ireland, Darren Bent and the rest of the youngsters. Brazil would seem a lot further away then wouldn’t it Christian..
In my opinion though, his time at Villa is now done. It is very rare that a footballer comes out in public and asks for a transfer only for him to still be there six months down the line and all memory of this disloyalty having been forgotten. The Villa Park faithful took to Benteke like a duck to water and instantly made him a cult hero, even when he missed sitters during the start of the season and was going through a baron patch, the support for him never faltered.
Therefore to repay the fans who adore him, the manager who backed him and the club who gave him this chance is a clear sign of ignorance, bigheadedness and a sign that he is set to be like another modern day footballer where all they care about is receiving their pay packet at the end of every week.
So who do we replace him with? Bony, who had just signed for Swansea, would have been an ideal replacement and I have no doubt that he would have been able to fill the Belgians shoes with ease. Lukaku and Ba have been linked in a cash + player swap deal if he was to sign for Chelsea, and either of these players for me would also be a very good replacement providing that they actually want to play for the badge on the shirt.
Overall, Villa could come out of this whole scenario the victors if around £25-30million is bid for him and a good replacement is bought in. This would then leave money left over to carry on strengthening the squad and making sure that the fears and worries of relegation from last season remain firmly in the past for good.
There’s no doubt about it, this saga has cast a very much unwanted shadow over the clubs pre-season plans but it is one that should be resolved well before the start of the season as Villa feel that they need adequate time to bring in a replacement and get him integrated in to the squad.
Fear not Villa fans, whatever happens with regards to Benteke, Randy Lerner and Paul Lambert will be sure to ensure that the real winners of this situation are Aston Villa Football Club.