This Is Villa Park

This Is Villa Park

Saturday, April 28, 2012

The French Revolution; Seems Like It Was Only Last Year

"I was very much looking forward to the prospect of my first full season as Villa manager and returning for pre-season training.
It has been an honour to manage this great club and I wish everyone connected with Aston Villa every success for the future."
Last season we moaned and groaned after the departure of Martin O'Neill just five days before we embarked on an exciting prospect of the new Barclays Premier League season. Results didn't go our way, players turned against our own manager and things seemed unsettled. However, twelve months later we've realised that this was probably a little more acceptable than our current situation.

Gerard Houllier had an ambition and a plan of action, his own French Revolution. Despite various bust ups with players, he knew what he wanted to do. He wanted to play quick, neat, attacking football. Yet, it needed time to work for us, for players to come to terms with these tactics - which they used very well in the last five games of the season. However, we didn't give the manager enough time, we were too quick to jump on his back and rip his head off for poor form and our flirtation with relegation.

Your probably wondering why I'm saying this, right? I'm not asking you to give Alex McLeish any more time, I'm just reminiscing. What could have been seems a whole lot more tempting than the future at Aston Villa Football Club at the moment.

Even if we did have a rocky season last year, there were plans in place to continue to make Villa a top club. Let's face it, Houllier and Martin O'Neill are two very different managers. Gerard wanted to get the ball down and play football, pass and move. O'Neill just wanted the ball up to the big man at the top of the field and someone to run onto the returned pass. The players were all those of Martin, not of Houllier. He wanted to change so many things in such a short space of time. Probably not the best idea in the short term, but long term I can see that it would have worked.

Then you have Alex McLeish, on the very opposite end of the spectrum. Defend when your away, at least get a point. Attack when your at home, go 1-0 up and then sit back.

Easier said than done.

At the start of the season, I asked for Villa fans to give the man a chance. I gave him until February and then gave up all hope in the man.

You may call me fickle.

I still go to the games and I still cheer on the boys. But I don't cheer the manager, I don't boo him either however.

This is the time, when we as fans need to pull together, for the support that the players need, not our manager.

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