The first home game of the season is always something beautiful whatever league you are in. I cannot wait to see my old friends before and after the game tomorrow, the worst part of the day will be the match.
Unfortunately, unlike myself, a lot of Villa fans are not on a moaning sabbatical. Paul Lambert could re-sign Emile Heskey and put him in goal and I would not moan. He could even re-sign Andy Gray and put him in charge of the ladies team for all I care. I am placing my faith in Lambert. He knows more about football than me and I want him to be the manager for years to come.
In the last 20 years, we’ve gone through more managers than Prince Harry has bodyguards and it has to stop. We need stability. And the only way that will happen is with a bit of patience. Lambert has got a massive job to do at the Villa; our squad is not good enough and Randy is not going to spend £150m to win the Race for Seventh and obviously not the £700m needed to actually win the glorious Premiership.
But we have to give him time, this season should be written off except for a bloody good go at the cups. Because the league we are in he would have to work miracles, have no injuries and every player have the season of his life to finish seventh. However, if he gets us playing high-tempo football, something I’ve not seen for years down the Villa we could beat Everton.
He knows more about football than me and I want him to be the manager for years to come
Villa vs Everton is the most played top flight fixture in England and how we get on against the Toffees is always a good barometer of how we are progressing. They, like us, are a proud old club, with a good ground and lots of fans but are a million miles away from winning the league ever again.
They will be knackered after beating Manchester United and with the whole ground behind the team, well for the first half anyway, we should win. After last season we need to be together as a club, the fans, manager, owner and players all pulling in the same direction instead of sniping, moaning and complaining about one another.
I ended up having a blazing row last week at West Ham with some thicko who was already slating our new signings and the manager. Let’s just say at West Ham I did not have the best ‘Premiership customer experience.’ As soon as I got on the coach to the game I was given a list of instructions from the Villa ‘fans’ friend’ copper.
Gems included: "THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN HAVING A DRINK AND GETTING DRUNK!". No shit Sherlock, one costs £3.50 and the other costs £20. And of course the "beer can only be consumed with a meal at a pub that the coach stops." Which means we now have to buy two packets of pork scratchings instead of the one. And last but not least: "You have to be in control of your faculties to get in the ground," which I read to mean as "bowels" not faculties.
After last season we need to be together as a club, the fans, manager, owner and players
Am I the only one who resents the heavy handed policing that now seems to go in hand with football? I’m 36-years-old and don’t need anyone to tell me how many beers to drink and whether to fart or follow through. After a roasting journey down south we got to Upton Park, a proper football ground in a run-down area, as they should be.
Grounds should not be stuck out the way on some retail park without a cheap chicken outlet in sight. However, great ground or not, I had to take my life in my hands getting a beer, over a thousand people in a crush to get a warm John Smiths is not my idea of fun, neither was it for the four women who passed out waiting for a wine.
They wouldn’t let that happen at the tennis but as we are football fans no-one cares. Then of course there were the moaning fans. When we were passing it around it was great to sing: "We’re passing it around, we’re passing it around." But then an hour later the familiar cries of "get it up front" started to ring around the away end.
There was only 70 minutes gone in this season before I heard the first: "This is as bad as last season," as well as screaming other abuse at the team. It was as if some fans had nothing to moan about for three months and came back with a vengeance whatever the result. Everyone should trust Lambert, his first two big singings Concrete Ronny Vlaar and Al Ahmadi look great buys and will only get better as they get used to the Premiership.
But whatever the result tomorrow I will not moan, as a Villa fan I’ve had enough of that for a lifetime.
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