I found the following Preview on Villa from the ‘Representing The Mambo’ Blog – LINK
I actually think it is one of the best I have read about the season to come and honest with it.
The mere fact that Paul Lambert isn’t Alex Mcleish sees optimism abound around Villa Park. Still, whilst it’s true that the former Norwich boss should preside over a somewhat more progressive brand of the game than the listless dross offered up by his predecessor, such buoyancy is largely baseless.
Inheriting a squad short on depth and woefully lacking in quality, Lambert has added only Eredivisie journeymen and a League 1 full-back to the mix. Stephen Ireland and Barry Bannan remain Villa’s most accomplished technicians but the former has lacked the focus that saw him touted amongst the league’s finest midfielders and the latter is yet to enjoy a manager’s full trust.
The club’s academy may be amongst the country’s most productive but many recent graduates are yet to establish whether their places are the product of ability or necessity.
Transfer Dealings: 5/10 – Solid, probably improved the squad but nothing worthy of any great enthusiasm.
They’ll Finish: Lower-mid-table if Lambert is all he is alleged to be but will be in for a relegation scrap if he is merely a good manager. Either way, the pressure on Darren Bent to carrying the scoring burden will be huge.