Welcome to new contributor JJ who has sent in his thoughts about the future development of the Villa team.
I have a dream. A dream that one day us, we, Villa fans may have a better future. Its simple, it really is. Last year we missed out on fourth due to points dropped mainly at home to teams that came and parked the proverbial “bus” in front of the goal. We need a plan B and that requires more creativity in midfield. Don’t get me wrong but Stilian (Petrov) is not the most dynamic of players. Prolific in Scotland but who isn’t. If we’re going play with a holding midfielder then we need somebody else. My suggestion is Nigel de Jong from Man City – the’ve signed YaYa Toure and got Patrick Vieria in reserve. He’s looked decent in South Africa.
If Milner is going then lets cash in on him. £30 million no less! Don’t get me wrong but if our best players leave Villa Park then it should ONLY be to go to bigger clubs, play Champions League, etc, etc. We shouldn’t begrudge them that! However Milner should think long and hard about Man City. Who is he really going to get to play in centre midfield? Replacements who would take us forward would be Stephen Ireland, Steven Defour or Migel Veloso. We need that creativity, spark and passion in the middle!
Then there’s our strikers – where do I start. Heskey really has to go. His confidence, whatever he had is gone. His biggest contribution in the World Cup was mullering Rio! Carew, I would keep. He showed enough last season (intermittently) to perhaps keep hold of him. Gabby has potential, there’s no doubt about it. Pace, a more physical presence and hopefully more confidence. His finishing does need to improve however. Classic example was against West Ham last season at Villa Park at the end. So we need to add at least 2 strikers. Robbie Keane is a decent punt if its at the right price. He will score and hopefully his experience will rub off on the other players. My other suggestion is Vagner Love or Rodellega from Wigan. Vagner Love, when he played against us the season before last showed some great touches and good pace. Surely Martin he tickled your fancy?
Defensively, we need a right back if L.Young is off. Onuha from Man City – big, powerful and English. Enough said. We should hold onto Curtis Davies – end of.
So there we have it. My tuppance worth – probably worth that!. Oh one other thing, we need to ditch 442 and go 433. This how I would love it, love it, if we lined up on opening day against The Hammers:
Onuha/L.Young, Dunne, Davies, Warnock,
De Jong, Defour/Ireland,
Milner, Downing, Love/ Gabby, A Young.
That side has pace at the back and up front, creativity in midfield and would be a genuine threat. More importantly all these signings are realistic and are possible! Fourth place is going be difficult again. Spurs, Man City, Liverpool, Everton will all strengthen.
With a little imagination, self-belief, the backing of one the most understated yet most committed Chairman’s (God bless you Mr Lerner!), the genius that is Martin O’neil and of course the PASSION of the Villa Park faithful, we can push on. BELIEVE!!!!!