Saturday 16th April will be remembered in the history of Aston Villa Football Club for all the wrong reasons, the day that their relegation from the Premier League was officially confirmed.
A 1-0 defeat at Old Trafford finally hammered the last nail into the coffin and placed that dreaded “R” next to their name in the table.
If we are all honest it was no more than a waiting game from the turn of the year, they have played out one of the poorest season’s the top league has ever seen.
A quick overview this season’s of key events below:-
- Key men depart in the shape of Delph & Benteke (£40.5Mil income)
- 12 players arrive, mainly from France for a total of £52Mil
- October sees the club sack Tim Sherwood and replace with Remi Garde
- Remi Garde departs and is replaced by Eric Black
- Gabby Agbonlahor put on a 2 week personal fitness programme
- Jores Okere refuses to be involved in a match day squad as a substitute
These all make for grim reading and that is leaving out all of the media coverage surrounding Grealish, Lescott, Traore and Agbonlahor’s extremely questionable behaviour whilst not wearing the famous colours.
They nearly had a glimmer of a smile with a win at Watford, however avid Birmingham City fan Troy Deeney struck twice in the final 2 minutes to add another defeat to the already long list. It leave the club with the measly total of just 3 wins from 36 attempts.
Disarray from boardroom to touchline has left the easiest of footballing questions even easier to answer…
- Should Remi Garde have been appointed with no PL experience?
- Would Tim Sherwood and Ray Wilkins have done a worse job?
- Should they have spent all their money on untested players from Ligue 1?
- Are Hutton, Lescott, Richardson or Sinclair still good enough for this level?
- Were Aston Villa likely to be better than a minimum of 3 other sides this season?
We’ll save you wasting any brain power, the answer is a resounding NO to all 5 questions.
But it now needs to be onwards and back upwards for The Villans. They must recruit the right manager and do it quickly.
The Championship is an unforgiving league, all those midweek trips to Rotherham, Wolves and Reading among others will take their toll.
Among the contenders mentioned are Nigel Pearson, David Moyes and Steve Bruce. To be honest we can’t see any of these being the right men for the Trinity Road Stand dugout.
Villa need something different, someone who knows the leagues and does well on a budget whilst producing results.
Simon Grayson currently at Preston North End could be a good call, a former player with multiple football league promotions on his CV.
They need a complete squad overhaul, it’s the only way.
Get rid of all the deadwood and rebuild, if it takes 2 or 3 seasons then so be it. Aston Villa need to stop being a home for footballers that no one else wants.
A guideline would be as follows, presenting the out the door XI:-
Hutton Okore Lescott Cissokho
Sinclair Bacuna N’Zogbia Richardson
Hundreds of thousands of pounds saved per week by ridding yourselves of this useless lot, promoting youth and re-investing in solid lower league footballers.
Combine youth and solidity with the Westwood’s, Gestede’s and Richards’ you have a decent starting line up with a fighting chance at a top 6 finish.
This is potentially the most crucial period in their 141 year history.
All the best to Aston Villa and their fans, the Premier League needs sides like you albeit a strong competitive version.