david-avfc – Vital Villa Interviews 2019

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When did you become a Villa fan and why?

Basically from birth, I had no choice. My first game was apparently in 1999 when I was 5, not that I can remember it. I used to go to the occasional game with my dad when his mate couldn’t go and there was a spare ticket. Eventually the season ticket became available permanently and my dad snapped it up on my behalf – that was circa 2003 I have been going ever since, in the same seat.

What is your favourite Villa moment of all time/most treasured memory?

My first away game with my mate, against Blackburn. Agbonlahor – back in his good days scored in the second half and celebrated right in front of us, I was on the first row. It was surreal I was probably still at the age where I saw the players as super heroes so that was a great moment.

If you could bring back a former Villa player into this team (at his peak) who would it be and why?

Gareth Barry, all round Mr Consistent for years. We missed him when he left and it signalled the beginning of the downfall of the coming years.

How do you rate head coach Dean Smith’s time in charge so far?

My heart says 10 out of 10 for getting us promoted. My head says closer to 7 out of 10 as we went large periods of the season looking very poor. We failed to adapt to life without Grealish, and the form was only turned around once he returned. That said Smith has done a great job of getting the best out of Grealish, a quality player now starting to show his potential. Overall I am looking forward to seeing what Smith can do for us next season.

Best and worst moments of last season?

Best day for many seasons has to be the Wembley victory. The worst day would perhaps be the West Brom game in the league at home, it felt like all hope had been lost after that loss.

Your opening opinions on Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens?

Too early to say, although they appear to have good intentions from what we can see so far. If nothing else, they’ve managed to push Xia to the periphery which would seem to be a huge positive.

Tyrone Mings has arguably been the standout loan signing, but we only have a matching offer clause. Would you break the proverbial bank to secure his signature or do you go for Tammy Abraham?

Both have question marks over them; Mings on his injury record and Abraham on his Premier League record. I believe both players are good enough. If I had to choose I’d go for Mings as his attitude and enthusiasm for the club is a great sight for us supporters. He has good attributes which will shine through if he can remain fit.

Jack Grealish has proven himself to be a key man, how do you rate his development?

Under Smith and previously Bruce he has improved and has really shown that he can be a top player. We are lucky that we were promoted as we’d have waited a long time before we have someone as naturally talented. He’s matured significantly in the last 2 seasons and is ready to play at the top level.

Player of the Year?

Grealish – we have had some great players this season, McGinn, Abraham, Mings, but you can’t help but looking across the season and identifying clear periods in which we were either on top or completely underperforming and it all corresponds to when Grealish was it wasn’t in the side. He makes the entire team click around him, without him we’d be nowhere and although some players have been more consistent or played more games our success is down to Grealish more than the others.

All time favourite Villan?

Hitzlesperger from when I was a kid, I think I just liked the name. I think Grealish is seriously up there though

Hope’s for the coming campaign?

Mid-table and then kick on for the following season

One Bit Of Non-Football Wisdom For Us?

I wish I had some.

Take part yourself and read the other interviews below!

Villa, Promotion, The Summer Of 2019 – Yup, It’s Time For The Vital Villa Interviews!

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