Thursday, August 12, 2010
2. Aston Villa vs West Ham
3. Supporters Shield Tournament - Players Needed
4. News Round-up
5. Fantasy Football
6. Supporters club info.
1. Wow what a week, I was in the process of updating the member list and writing a season preview email when the news broke. Andrew sent me a private message that I just couldn't believe, Martin O'Neill gone? Days before the season starts? Utterly amazing and at the same time scary. O'Neills arrival 4 years ago signaled the start of a new era for the club. Villa had become a shadow of its famous former self during the final days of the Ellis era. David O'Leary very nearly relegated the club and the fans were praying for a takeover. I can still remember the excitement surrounding O'Neills appointment we all believed the only way he would have joined the club is if Deadly Doug had decided to sell and sure enough just a few days later we were introduced to Randy Lerner. Four years have passed and the club is unrecognizable from the one of 2005 both on and off the pitch. A large part of this must be credited to the former manager. O'Neill made some questionable signings but he also made some inspired ones all the while investing in youth the rewards of which we will be reaping for years to come. While I have always been a big fan of his and can see few other managers having accomplished what O'Neill has in the last 4 years I am truly horrified that he has left the club in such a quagmire. No circumstances can justify abandoning your troops on the eve of a battle especially when he could have walked 2 months ago. Now the club must scramble to replace him much to the distraction of the players and under the impending doom of the rapidly closing transfer window. Martin thanks for everything but in the end you departed like a plonker.
2. Manager or not the season kicks off for Villa on Saturday at 10am Eastern time against color thieves West Ham. this one is Live on FSC and the NYVillans will be watching at... Nevada Smiths. Yes after the boycott and madness towards the end of last season we have decided to return to Nevadas at least for now. I can confirm the West Ham fans will be joining us there. We still aren't entirely happy with the Kieron incident but for the moment it's really our only option. Hope to see many of you there, for the newcomers Nevadas is on 3rd Avenue between 11th and 12th. I'm the big handsome hairy Irish chap in the Richard Dunne shirt, don't be scared to say hello, I only bite after my 6th pint of Bass.
3. I've entered the NY Villans in an mens 8-a-side tournament to be played at pier 40 on Saturday August 28th. the pier is at Houston and the West Side Highway. We need players it's $30 a head with all the proceeds going to the DUSC City Soccer Initiative which provides coaching for inner city youth. if you like to play and you are interested let me know asap. The level will be reasonably good and the other teams are all various NYC supporters clubs Newcastle, Tottenham, Man City, Real Madrid, OM etc. Plus there will be a good session afterwards.
4. Obviously the biggest news being the departure of Martin O'Neill and the speculation around his successor but here's some stuff you may not have heard:
American Eric Lichaj has signed a new 3-year deal so expect to see the young right back challenging for some time in the senior team. Villa have released a new official website at avfc.co.uk which is a major improvement on the old one. Nicky Shorey has departed for West Brom. James Milner is expected to depart for Man City tomorrow for what is believed to be 25 million pounds. Moving in the other direction will be Stephen Ireland on a one year loan with the option to buy for a fixed price next summer. Until the appointment of a new manager the coach of our very successful reserve team Kevin McDonald will take charge of the senior squad and of course we wish him well.
5. The fantasy League is back for 2010/2011, those of you in it last year should be back in as I simply renewed the league for those of you who want to get involved go to: http://fantasy.premierleague.com/ and once you setup your team use the league join code: 1312649-268178 perhaps this year I'll actually maintain my team after the first week of the season.
6. Obviously not much has happened regarding the supporters club over the Summer months but heres a quick round-up. Congrats to club secretary Bob Warren who recently became a Dad. This seasons membership cards are on their way, once again due to the cost of sending 300+ cards out we will only be doing so for those who actually need them. So if you are headed over to Villa Park for a game let us know and we'll bung a card in the post for you. Of course anyone who comes to a game in Nevada's can usually get one off me or Steve. Lots of new members signed up since the end of last season - welcome to the NY Villans! I see many of you are situated in far flung sections of the country, if any of you are interested in finding Villa fans in your area let me know and I'll check the database. All the perks of being in an official Lions Club can be found on the website: http://www.avfclionsclubs.co.uk/ the main one of course is reserving match tickets for those traveling over, this season we are going to use a Pay Pal linked to the supporters club bank account and cash for tickets will need to be paid up front before Steve places the order as opposed to Steve having to hunt down peoples payment. We of course have always been talking about a big group trip over from the US could 2010/2011 be the season we finally do it? For anyone interested in buying merchandise we get a generous 15% off at the online store, to avail of this just browse to the Club store via the following link: http://www.astonvilladirect.com/stores/astonvilla/default.aspx?portal=D7NOMF74 and you should then see the Supporters club price.
Well it's definitely going to be an interesting next few days for the club, lets hope we get the manager we deserve.
Up the Villa.