Date: 10th October 2005 at 9:14pm
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Well, I did an interview for the second year running with Man Utd .com the official site. I was asked questions and answered them to the best of my ability, I did it tongue in cheek because I don’t think football should be taken ‘that’ seriously. 6 hours later the interview was pulled. Why? Someone at our club wasn’t impressed and asked for it to be removed. Can you see anything below that should cause such a reaction? Have you not seen anything worse on the net?

Seems once again the unwelcoming and aggressive club don’t like the fans to have an opinion. In truth I’m delighted that I struck a raw nerve, this sort of censorship just shows how sensitive they are and it would take a real idiot not to know that Villa is in trouble, trouble is by the look of things, we have some real idiots running the club, if spending time censoring fans is more important than improving Aston Villa, then lets pray that someone with balls comes in and bids, if not………..gulp.

There isn’t one word below that I haven’t said to them, put in print, had on leaflets, discussed on tv etc. I don’t think there is much below that others haven’t said much much stronger either. I bet Doug rues the day the internet was invented because it meant, via our fine and dandy web sites, that fans finally can discuss what is going on and fans have been able to educate themselves far better on the inner workings.

Anyway, it made me laugh, it made others laugh, the biggest laugh came when I found out some jokers at our club didn’t see the joke, well, imho, the joke is on you.

When we spoke to Aston Villa fan Jonathan Fear ahead of last season’s match at Old Trafford, it’s fair to say he was far from hopeful of getting a result.

Seven months on, little has changed for the editor of fans’ site, although he is tipping Villa new-boy Kevin Phillips to cause United some problems…

What’s the news on Doug Ellis then? Still going strong?

‘If potential investors can’t grapple power away from him this summer – and it looks like they can’t – then he’s not that close to the exit door. He has said he wants to leave in a box and maybe that is what we all have to wait for. Trouble is, we shouldn’t have to wait for that. You see, with Doug, it doesn’t matter about the club or the fans, it just matters about him. At his age and in his health, the £20million he could get for his share won’t make any difference to an already rich man, but losing the only thing that he does would. If only he would stop lying to the fans about aiming for the Champions League. It would also be great if people stopped believing the spin from Ellis Towers. He has never put any money into the club, he has had over £8million out and still has shares worth £15-20million. Not bad for an original investment of around £125k is it?’

Are you happy with your summer’s transfer activity?

‘A Villa fan happy with transfer activity? You have to be pulling my leg? Even if we do sign Baros, our squad is still woefully short and if we keep ‘playing’ at the Premiership, we might find the Championship is waiting for us. We buy one, we sell one, we’ve done it for years, using Dougeconomics it makes sense, but in the real world it means our squad never grows!’

David O’Leary is known as ‘Tubbs’ among some fans – presumably this is a sly potshot at his League of Gentlemen features. Are you concerned that he’ll only sign local players?

‘Very good! There seems to be an increasing amount of nicknames for the manager. O’Dreary and O’Dearme seem to be two that are popular. With the size and honesty (copyright DOL) of our squad, I’m not totally sure how the season will pan out, if we don’t have a good one, you can be sure a good percentage of fans will start calling for his head. Me? As far as I can see it doesn’t really matter who the manager is as long as Doug is in charge, they come with big promises, get totally frustrated at being held back and ‘leave’.’

Will Baros sign this week? Why has there been such a delay on the deal?

‘He’ll sign, this is just Villa’s way of doing business. I believe the board have been calculating, if he does come, how much extra Lucozade they will have to purchase and if having an extra player on the team coach will cost much more in petrol. We are all just hoping that Doug isn’t involved in the negotiations like he was for the Beattie ‘transfer’. You can picture it now, Baros asks about the club’s ambitions and Doug saying ‘I was in the war you know?’, ‘I invented the bicycle kick’, ‘who are you again?’ And that is only partly tongue in cheek!’

You had a fairly action-packed start to the season, with four goals in nine minutes, will it be that entertaining every week?

‘I said to my mates after our first goal we should leave as we were all happy. It was exciting for the first 9 minutes although our defence – which is usually fairly strong – were all over the place. However our tactics were awful against such a big physical side, hoofing the ball up to our small strikers was not the way to go, when we played the ball on the ground we looked good, but didn’t do it enough. We did it all last season as well, we were crying out for someone to hold on to the ball and pass it, but instead it was hoofed forward to a clueless Vassell or an offside Angel. Come to think of it, this managerial business is easy, maybe I should apply when we sack this manager – and believe me, sooner or later, we will sack him!’

<>What have you made of Eric Djemba since his move to Villa Park?

‘He looks great sitting on the bench. Did his hair all nice in tramlines (or whatever they’re called) the other day. Oh sorry, do you mean football wise? No idea, we buy players, we don’t always play them – you only have to ask Berson. Djemba looked very poor at the end of last season when he played, but hopefully…no, he looked very poor! Was he sent to us as a joke or can he actually play I wonder?’

Last year you were pessimistic ahead of your trip to Old Trafford, and difference this year?

‘Kevin Phillips, given the chance will score. Last season we didn’t have anyone who could score. Man City really have bought a very average striker (3 in 21 for us last year) in Vassell, I’m sure you’ll all be heartbroken about that. But no, maybe if we battle we’ll get a draw, depends on the form of United. We simply don’t compete at the same level these days despite the bull that comes out of Villa Park. I’d be supremely delighted if we won, but you’ve got to be realistic in life and we just haven’t got the quality to contain your world stars.’

At least you can rest assured Sorensen’s saving his mistakes for the October 15 trip to St Andrews…

‘Yeah, our keepers save their mistakes for the local derby, I believe it is in their contracts.’

So, who should we be worried about on Saturday then?

‘I’m not sure Ferguson worries about anyone does he? As I say, Phillips – given the chance – will score. But I’m not sure he’ll get the supply he needs and Angel is way off form. Maybe he will finally turn it on against United, or maybe not. If he got back his form from the season before last, we’d be laughing, but on Saturday he looked a long way off.’

Likewise, which United player(s) are you concerned about?

‘On a personal note I’m concerned about Wayne Rooney, I think he looks like Shrek and that worries me! In footballing terms, Scholes and Giggs, Keane, Nistelrooy, shall I go on? You have quality. I must say United didn’t play as a cohesive team for the games I saw last season, and you do look like you need an injection of younger players… no, I’m just trying to kid myself that we have a chance. I tried, I failed.’

What’s your score prediction for Saturday?

‘My head says 2-0 my heart prays for 0-1.’

And finally, how do you think United will do this season?

‘Do I not have enough to worry about without thinking where United will finish?! I’d say, if I was to have a wild stab in the dark, top 3! You can see I take real risks with my predictions can’t you? The league is between Chelsea, United and Arsenal. Liverpool might have a say but I don’t think they will win it.’