Vital Villa member starchild65 reflects on the last few season’s for Aston Villa, and the rise of Wolverhampton Wanderers, West Bromwich Albion taking the recent bragging rights and the upcoming second City against Birmingham.
Right now as Villa fans we are hurting. Our pride has taken some huge punches in recent times, mismanagement and ownership. No investment under Randy Lerner, stupid over-the-odds purchases under Dr Tony Xia. Relegation followed by mediocrity in the second tier and it seems a third season of not getting back to the promised land of huge wads of sky cash in the Premier League.
In nearly all the years I have been (and I am still fiercely) proud to be Claret & Blue all I have ever really known (until the last few years) is being accustomed to seeing the Villa being the best team in the Midlands, top dogs season after season, finishing higher than our neighbours, seeing them go up and down like a yoyo whilst we remained to feast at the top table. We have lauded it over our rivals and rubbed their faces in it. We are Aston Villa we crowed proudly.
Baggies had the mantle of top team for a few years as we began our decline, and now Wolves fans have the chance to beat their chests in triumph and fair play to them. I remember in the 80s how that club (Wolves) nearly ceased to exist and setting aside partisan loyalty to our beloved Villa, the very thought that such a club as that, which like ours, has such a glorious past could have been allowed to vanish for good, would have been a disaster for English football.
So let the Gold and Black fans have their moment in the spotlight, they have earned the right and right now, Wolves are performing admirably in the Premier League, certainly better than we did in our last few years of top flight football.
Albion just beat us on our own patch and that galls us all. And if I am being brutally honest, I think Blues will want it more than our lot when we go there and it could be yet more pain, frustration and anger to endure. But as I said, we have been gloating for years about our superiority and our rivals’ inferiority. Well, what goes around comes around and for the time being we have to accept it and take it on the chin.
It ain’t pleasant and our neighbours will revel in our demise. We are just gonna have to man up and tough it out. As the saying goes, the bigger they are, the harder they fall, and Villa has fallen a long long way from such a once lofty position very quickly.
Under our new owners we have a chance to rebuild, and there is much to do. No House Of Cards like under Xia, there is now substantial wealth and experience in place at the very top. But we won’t be suddenly tearing up the Championship next season. If Smith is to be given the chance to build something, it’s going to take a good two seasons to completely overhaul this shambolic overpaid squad. We may have to face the prospect of our better players going in summer (Jack Grealish, John McGinn for example). I hope the foundations are now being put in place to start afresh and that by 2021 season we will begin to see a team emerging not just good enough to get us back to the top flight but to stay there.
I truly believe we will see Aston Villa fight its way back to the big time, and we can again reclaim our crown as the biggest club in the Midlands, but more than that, we can compete with the best in the land and be a team we can all be proud to be a part of.
These tough times will make us all stronger. Sometimes we have to endure the torrid times to really appreciate the good times when they come round.
We will rise again. Up The Villa!!