Date: 12th August 2006 at 10:42am
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Martin O’Neill says it could take him several weeks of competitive Premiership football before he gets to understand the squad and decides what the best team for the season is adding: ‘I’m loathe to say this a new dawn. It’s easy to say, a bit more difficult to achieve.’

O’Neill, who is still being strongly linked with Stilian Petrov and possibly another signing, said

‘By tomorrow morning (after the match last night) I should have a fair idea of what the squad consists of. But I won’t know that for certain until they have all played some sort of competitive football, and by that I mean the Premiership.’

‘I’m loathe to say this a new dawn. It’s easy to say, a bit more difficult to achieve. Players who had had a gripe with previous managers might think they now have a chance, but it doesn’t guarantee anything. I will have a period here where I don’t know precisely what a player can do. I’m an okay judge of that, and I will pick that up quickly. But the game against Arsenal will be totally different from the three pre-season friendlies I’ve seen so far. I would like to pick this side on its merits, but I might not know the merits of this side for some weeks.’

He also says ‘It won’t do anyone any harm to play in a position they’re unaccustomed to as they might have to be there at some stage. I have tried to get the players physically prepared, now it’s a case of them being mentally prepared. I want the players to have more edge about pre-season.’


7 Replies to “Difficult To Achieve New Villa Dawn”

  • That article suggests MON will go with a very similar line up to DOL’s first XI against the Arse, until he figures out who is more deserving of a staring place.

  • Hopefully we may have Petrov and A N Other in the squad by next Saturday that should help to make competition for places a bit more urgent for the existing players.
    I am a bit concerned to hear Barry wont commit to the cause unless it just paper talk.

  • It seems all the Villa players are very happy to work with O’Neill, but let’s face it, after the horrors of last season they are not exactly in demand by other clubs. Barry is an exception, if he is still a Spurs boy at heart, Jol is an excellent manager

  • I think it’s important that we don’t expect too much from Villa in the first 1-2 months and I think that this is what O’Neill is getting at. O’Neill has only been in the job for 1 week, he has had no time to get in new players and no time for player deve

  • I think this will give a much needed kick in the bum. It’l take time but i know O’neal will get the right balance in the end.

  • Lets not fool ourselves, MON has inherited a mess, and he isnt going to turn things around overnight. Hopefully he’ll convince the want away’s that Villa Park is the place to be, and then with a couple of quality new arrivals we can certainly approach the

  • Am I missing the point? We all know MON has a great deal of work to do to get this team right, but will he ever achieve it with Ellis still in control? Frankly, no matter how good MON is, I believe that with the spectre of Ellis behind him he will ne

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