Date: 12th April 2010 at 10:51am
Written by:

Who is to Blame for the Villa Decline?

Players (some) and manager have all come in for some stick in recent weeks as the season has once again shown signs of stalling at the wrong time.

Maybe though we should ask who is to blame – really?

Some players?

Generally most have given their all in the season to date – and certainly many of the key players have given everything that could be asked of them. None has under-performed on a regular basis – in terms of effort or obvious intent – and if some disagree with this statement, then blame the manager for picking them.

The manager?

Always an easy target and I have wondered whether he has hit a ceiling. But wait, maybe he is playing what he considers to be his best team because he knows that to make changes will only weaken whatever chance we have of winning the next game. So who is to blame if some of the other players are not good enough? Easy to say the manager, but in any situation, there will always be better players and the desire to keep them playing – Wayne Rooney as an example anyone?

The owner?

Randy has been a breath of fresh air but to some extent must be to ‘blame’ because he sets the budgets for new players fees and salaries and therefore must have limited the manager’s desire to buy. However the financial data released over the past few weeks shows that as a club Villa is reliant on Randy’s funding – it is not a profitable club and we can see enough cases of where over spending has led to serious problems, so he is right to exercise some constraints – and maybe more than he does.

The fans?

Yes maybe we are to blame for unrealistic expectations. Fact is we pay some of the lowest seat prices in the PL and do not have the largest stadium. So annual revenues – i.e. net money paid out by us – is amongst the lowest in the top six or eight clubs. On the one hand we don’t want to pay more but on the other all the evidence shows that the highest earning clubs are the most successful. Maybe we should be offering to pay more? So back to the start – who is to blame? One answer is everyone in their own way. MON could have bought some better players and used the ones he has better, Randy could have given him some more cash, some players should have shown up at vital times but didn’t and the fans? Some of us got carried away and have forgotten that this is a long term trip we are on. All round the club is now in a much better state than it has been over the 48 years I have followed it, except for a couple of odd years that weren’t sustained.

Another answer is what decline?

As someone else said over the weekend, it’s time to calm down and be thankful for what we have, I’d hate to go back to where we were and believe that if we all stick together, it will get better still, though without more funding from we fans as a whole, what we have will never be improved upon or sustained.


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