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A Villa point of view

We are now beyond the 'early days' thoughts, and you are very much in the title race, let alone champions league battle - you must be happy with how your season is going so far?
Very happy. I didn't expect it to go quite like this if I'm honest - not sure if that is just the drummed in pessimism of things going wrong for so long or the fact I still don't think the squad is quite there yet, especially in the strike force, but hey, 4th and within touching distance of the top, I'm over the moon and am starting to think that hey, maybe Martin O'Neill knows what he is doing!

Can you really break up the top 4 'monopoly'?
Without a shadow of a doubt. Sir Alex Chewalot has often said if anyone can, Villa can and I think that many younger fans of all teams forget just what a big club Villa are. I think we've built very solid foundations, our training ground for instance has had millions spent on it, even down to a full sized replica of the Villa Park pitch and is up there with the very best in Europe. Add to that a manager who seems to have more than the luck of the Irish on his side as well as great experience as a player and manager and a fantastic (and I do mean FANTASTIC) owner and board who are totally in tune with the club, the manager, the players and the fans.

The squad has some very special players in there as well and we have the money available to bring in even 'bigger' players when the manager is ready. We aren't and never were (thank the good lord Paul McGrath) going to 'do an Abramovich' but it is nice to know there are funds around for when we qualify for the Champions League, whether that is this year or in years to come.

Who do you think has been your best signing this season so far, and why?
Two, James Milner because he is a hungry young player with a great engine and a fantastic never say die attitude + Luke Young. Didn't think much of the signing when made as I really didn't know that much about him but he has slotted in brilliantly - despite being played at left-back instead of his favoured right-back position.

Heskey has just signed, do you think there will be more arrivals - if so in which areas and maybe even who?
Yes, there will be a few more I think. The reports linking us with Daniel Sturridge and Michael Johnson I think has some legs. I wouldn't be at all surprised to see us get both. I think Villa are ready for a WOW player or two to be honest and especially a top striker, but MON seems to be doing an ok job without listening to knobs like me so long may that continue! If we get 4th I'm sure we'll see a few 'stars' blended in with the great players we have already.

I am intrigued by the Heskey signing. I will readily admit I wasn't that keen as his goalscoring record isn't the best BUT having read so many opposing fans, players etc say how good a signing it is (Click Here) - especially the reporters on the Sunday Supplement, that I am starting to really have high hopes! He'll get the full backing of the Villa faithful now he is a Villan anyway.

I'd quite like to see us bid for Crouchie as well but obviously that won't happen as Pompey can't sell a second striker this transfer window!

What are your expectations, or hopes for this season then? Surely top 6 minimum must have been assured by now?
I don't think anything is assured but it would be beyond my mental powers to think of anything as depressing as us falling totally out of the top six, we've worked too hard all season to get to where we are. I did think if we could pinch Michael Owen and he was fit, that we could have a (albeit outside) chance of grabbing the title and shocking the established top 4! Who knows, I think we have realistic expectations of finishing in the top four but that will also require luck with injuries and suspensions.

What about Pompey, what do you think we should expect or hope for - what do you think we will get?
I hope Tony Adams gets time, I think it is tough for him to follow the red faced bloke after having some decent players sold but given time he might just be able to turn things around. I would like think you are too good to be pulled into the relegation battle so maybe this season now has to be just about consolidation and steadying the ship after that 'orrible mans exit.

I always like to know what others think of our manager, so what do you think of Tony Adams, also what about his predecessor 'Jamie's Dad'?
Untested at this level but as above, he deserves a chance. I have no polite words to say about red face and my Nan often said if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing. So there you go, I'll say nothing.

Who is the real danger man that Pompey need to watch?
Luckily for you Ashley Young is out, unfortunately for you Emile Heskey is in and will want to make an impact on his debut. I expect nothing short of a brace from the big man!

If you could take any Pompey player and put him in your squad who would it be and why?
I'll have Peter Crouch please, I think for a big man he has some great skill and always gives his all.

Is there anyone that you would like to send Pompey's way?
You can have Moustapha Salifou. WHO you all ask? Exactly. Bless him.

Go on, who's going to win?
Tough game, always is at Fratton Park, but I'll not bet against Villa on their current away form (5 away wins on the trot. In total 10 unbeaten) so a narrow 20-0 to Villa... or should that be 2-0 !

Questions answered by The Fear, thanks to him, from Vital Villa.

You can see my answers given to him by clicking here.


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday January 26 2009

Time: 6:02PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
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26/01/2009 18:10:00

lmao at SalifOOOOU
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 19:00:00

i dunno about 20-0 lol. i'd usually go drew but i can't seem to get myself in a postivie mind set about pompey results these day so i wouldn't be surprised at 2-0 or 2-1 villa
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 19:29:00

Peter crouch is certainly going to be one of three men to watch. the others being jamo and glen johnson. Pennant looks promising, I hope we will get to see pele come out, and I also hope our defence is sold - after all, it SHOULD be.
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 19:31:00

but good answers i've always liked Villa alot and i really admire the way they go about business i hope you do snatch the title it'd give me something to smile about this season lol
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 19:33:00

We always seem to have a habit of breaking teams poor form, si i think it would be just typical if Pompey somehow pull off a result against us, but hopefully not.
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26/01/2009 20:34:00

If I was a Villa fan, I'd be confident, but as I'm a Pompey fan, I'm not very right now. Lets hope the new blood, and a reaction to Saturday's result allows us to pull something out the hat. Plus Johnno's back. Have to say I would love to see Villa break the big 4 stranglehold. Would also love to see them lift (our) FA Cup this season, specially as I've got a tenner on it. But I want their champions league ambitions to take a dent tomorrow, don't know if it will happen. By the way, Carps, did you mean you hope our defence is 'sold' (wot all of them?) or did you mean 'solid' ;-)
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 21:09:00

I know you are all going to think I am daft, but I spoke to Mr G about Pompey and it transpired he has never attended a match they lost. (He has stopped going a while back!) Anyway, I have told him he has to come to watch AV tomorrow night and so he is. We're gonna win - simple really:-)
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 21:17:00

i hope that it will work Gandor will want to know if that works!! make a thread of it!
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26/01/2009 21:38:00

I'm looking forward to tomorrow, should be a good match. Gandor, thats alot of pressure on Mr G's shoulders, long may he continue to visit fratton Park. If tomorrow goes well I can see Mr G will be at EVERY home game!
Report Abuse
26/01/2009 21:42:00

and away game!
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26/01/2009 21:45:00

hmm, it doesn;t work with away games... I've tried :-) (I ALSO have never seen us loose at fratton park... although sadley I did see us loose at the emirates. but I wasn;t wearing my lucky pompey shirt, so can I discount that? :-) ). and yes tracyc, I did mean to say "solid"...although "sold" for "sol" would be fairly apropriate!
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26/01/2009 22:06:00

Nice on 'The Fear' honest answers as always - Just hope you are wrong .. I have no optimism for Pmpey at the minute so I reckon we will nick it .. No idea why .. just a feeling.. (note to self: Make Drs appt concerning constant confusion between dreams and reality)
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27/01/2009 06:44:00

Tough one tonight, Villa have improved on last season & could still get that top 4 place & beating out form teams like us is a sign if they will or won't. Hoping for the best & fearing the worst, again!
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27/01/2009 09:53:00

Nice one "Fear". Villa's away run to come to an end tonight as you sample a Pompey backlash. Well, I can hope, can't I?
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27/01/2009 09:59:00

I cant help but take my hat off to all of you. I am a villa fan but I read your responses here and cant help but feel you really are a great bunch of Football fans unlike some clubs that have the most obnoxius fans. i wish you guys avoid relegation and have a decent run into the end of the season, and by some reason if your luck did turn arround tonite i will not begrudge your success aginst us.
Report Abuse
27/01/2009 10:50:00

but i still want mt team to win..
Report Abuse
27/01/2009 10:51:00

One of my best mates is a Villan and am taking him to see PFC at Fulham next week (it's a treat not a punishment) Come on Villa you can spare a few points for a poor old club in its time of need....!
Report Abuse
27/01/2009 11:17:00

i always look forward to the villa games, your a good side with quality players - best of all most are english! the games are usually really good to watch aswell. the past few years, due to my involvement with vital football - and growing friendship with j (the fear) add some extra spice too...
good luck to villa, after tonight of course, hopefully your run can end and a new one for us can start!
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27/01/2009 11:21:00


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