Heroes & Villains, the Aston Villa fanzine

Heroes & Villains => Heroes Discussion => Topic started by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 09:55:48 PM

Title: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 09:55:48 PM
It sometimes feels like we're never getting away from it.

14th place, barring a miracle of miracles, how many of us would have fancied that at the start of the season (remember we were laughing at the idea of taking ESR from Arsenal?). A decade of not finishing in the top half of the premier league.

It isn't Gerrard's fault at all, but it's a mindset at the club that we need to struggle away from, and I am not sure how long it is going to take us to achieve that.

Or if we ever will.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: cdbearsfan on May 19, 2022, 09:56:59 PM
Is this the post-match thread?
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: AlexAlexCropley on May 19, 2022, 09:57:02 PM
We've got too many mediocre players.This will be addressed I'm sure.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 09:58:08 PM
Is it maybe that we are using the wrong definition of mediocrity, and that really, we've got a load of players who really aren't as good as we might have thought they were?
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: PaulWinch again on May 19, 2022, 09:58:30 PM
Itís a weird one, like tonight we were the better side but lacked precision. I think youíre right that itís a mentality thing and we need to break it. You look at the attacking talent on the pitch at the end, we should be consistently scoring more goals.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Steve67 on May 19, 2022, 09:59:11 PM
I hope Gerrard is as good as he thinks he is because we are full of mediocrity, benevolence and lacking in guts and he needs to alter the look of the club.  Our motto is Prepared.  Needs changing to 'just happy to be here'.   I wouldn't care one bit if most of these players don't play at Villa Park next season.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: AlexAlexCropley on May 19, 2022, 09:59:16 PM
Is it maybe that we are using the wrong definition of mediocrity, and that really, we've got a load of players who really aren't as good as we might have thought they were?
Sorry,that's too Albert Camus for me
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 10:00:25 PM
Itís a weird one, like tonight we were the better side but lacked precision.

Absolutely, this is what I mean.

We watch a match like that and we see the positives (in the context of what we are used to) but ultimately, we've just failed to beat a side who are probably going down, at a time when we have no pressure on us.

It is the acceptance of the pedestrian that has built up over 10 years. Ten entire years.

Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Goldenballs on May 19, 2022, 10:01:00 PM
Not Gerrard's fault at all?  2 home wins in 11 (I think that's what Sky said) I think he has to take some blame for that shocking record.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Goldie.7 on May 19, 2022, 10:01:23 PM
Is this the post-match thread?

Pope - man of the match.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ROBBO on May 19, 2022, 10:02:34 PM
Two wins in the last ten games is not good enough. The money that has been spent and yet we do not look even close to a team. We have a group of players some with a lot of talent but there is no structure about the way we play. I looked at the Burnley supporters faces toward the end and thought how many times have we been there, fighting for survival.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Baldy on May 19, 2022, 10:02:47 PM
No intensity, desire, will or want.

Mediocrity is the word.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 10:03:42 PM
Not Gerrard's fault at all?  2 home wins in 11 (I think that's what Sky said) I think he has to take some blame for that shocking record.

He is just the latest bringer of mediocrity. The problem runs way deeper than a manager with half a season under his belt.

I wonder how Sawiris and Edens feel, pouring hundreds of millions into this and seeing shite like tonight (and, let's be totally honest here, tonight was miles off being one of our worst showings, but was still half hearted crap).
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Nelly on May 19, 2022, 10:05:41 PM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ldavfc4eva on May 19, 2022, 10:05:55 PM
There are a lot of international players in the squad, so not too sure the mediocre ones are.

Martinez, Mings, Digne,Coutinho, Luiz, Ings, Watkins all have played at the highest level and for highly ranked nations.

Add Cash, McGinn, Ramsey (England U21) Olsen, Traore etc for lesser nations in the FIFA Rankings or U21, and I donít see too many poor quality players.

Getting them to gel and play consistently together seems to be the issue rather than individual player quality.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: eamonn on May 19, 2022, 10:06:51 PM
BBC 5 Live said Pope pulled off five or six worldie saves. Doesn't sound like a lack of intensity, desire or even ability. Ironically the last two home games are the shitty 1-1 VP draws that I've been raised on as a fan for a lot of the last 30 years. We've rarely inspired.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 10:08:14 PM
BBC 5 Live said Pope pulled off five or six worldie saves. Doesn't sound like a lack of intensity, desire or even ability. Ironically the last two home games are the shitty 1-1 VP draws that I've been raised on as a fan for a lot of the last 30 years. We've rarely inspired.

It's not about this evening, it's the entire season - and the last ten.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 19, 2022, 10:08:31 PM
Too many ordinary players. Watkins, McGinn, Luiz, nowhere near good enough.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 10:09:00 PM
Too many ordinary players. Watkins, McGinn, Luiz, nowhere near good enough.

If we get offered stupid money for those, I'd let all three go.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 19, 2022, 10:09:26 PM
I can't believe Spurs want McGinn, can't wait to see how they react to the pedestrian, casual giving away of the ball.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: PaulWinch again on May 19, 2022, 10:09:36 PM
BBC 5 Live said Pope pulled off five or six worldie saves. Doesn't sound like a lack of intensity, desire or even ability. Ironically the last two home games are the shitty 1-1 VP draws that I've been raised on as a fan for a lot of the last 30 years. We've rarely inspired.

He did make some amazing saves. I actually have some hope that Gerrardís mentality might help, but he needs a bit of time.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: eamonn on May 19, 2022, 10:10:59 PM
BBC 5 Live said Pope pulled off five or six worldie saves. Doesn't sound like a lack of intensity, desire or even ability. Ironically the last two home games are the shitty 1-1 VP draws that I've been raised on as a fan for a lot of the last 30 years. We've rarely inspired.

It's not about this evening, it's the entire season - and the last ten.

I know, hence the last part of my post. Just rebutting the previous poster's comments as they didn't seem to pertain to tonight.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Oklahoma on May 19, 2022, 10:16:25 PM
Not his fault at all?

He's been Manager for nearly 3/4 of the season.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: KevinGage on May 19, 2022, 10:22:14 PM
Such is the depth of the squad now we're in a situation where we can bring either Coutinho, Buendia or Ings off the bench. 

Yet we still look mostly laboured and short of ideas in midfield and attack.

At some stage the manager might need to cop the blame for how we're set up.

Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Rudy65 on May 19, 2022, 10:24:30 PM
There are a lot of international players in the squad, so not too sure the mediocre ones are.

Martinez, Mings, Digne,Coutinho, Luiz, Ings, Watkins all have played at the highest level and for highly ranked nations.

Add Cash, McGinn, Ramsey (England U21) Olsen, Traore etc for lesser nations in the FIFA Rankings or U21, and I donít see too many poor quality players.

Getting them to gel and play consistently together seems to be the issue rather than individual player quality.

So how much longer will you give them. Bang average most of them. I love Oli but he isnít international quality
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Rudy65 on May 19, 2022, 10:25:52 PM
I can't believe Spurs want McGinn, can't wait to see how they react to the pedestrian, casual giving away of the ball.

Great assist but agree, cash in. The media love him
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Stu on May 19, 2022, 10:30:11 PM
It sometimes feels like we're never getting away from it.

14th place, barring a miracle of miracles, how many of us would have fancied that at the start of the season (remember we were laughing at the idea of taking ESR from Arsenal?). A decade of not finishing in the top half of the premier league.

It isn't Gerrard's fault at all, but it's a mindset at the club that we need to struggle away from, and I am not sure how long it is going to take us to achieve that.

Or if we ever will.

I wonder if some of us are feeling our age a bit and getting impatient to see us do something before we shuffle off. I saw us win the League Cup in Ď94 and Ď96, when I was 13 and 15 years old respectively, and Iím 42 at my next birthday.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Brazilian Villain on May 19, 2022, 10:31:25 PM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty.

Agreed, we've won one league title and one FA Cup in the last 100 years. It's hardly a recent development.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: OzVilla on May 19, 2022, 11:05:09 PM
We're not clinical enough up top and prone to stupid errors at the back.  In between we can play some decent stuff and when we click we're a more than decent outfit.  Trouble is this describes pretty much every game we play.  End result, 14th finish.  Desperately need some physical presence in the side.   
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 19, 2022, 11:11:45 PM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.

In the 90s we were generally a top 6 club. Made three cup finals, 2nd, 4th, 5th regularly in the prem/division one and had some good european runs.

Losing the 2000 cup final was the turning point as obviously in those days likes of Chelsea and Liverpool weren't miles clear of us and we were better than likes of Spurs and Newcastle.

Since then it has been mediocrity personified.

Only real point we've looked a genuinely top club at prem level was 18 months under O'Neill.

These owners and CEO mean well but ultimately we've started from a much lower base.

I'm not sure it's mentality per se. Martinez has the air of a winner and I really don't think Coutinho + Digne are going to be satisified with mid table but we are at the point now where we need to probably cull some more of the players who've helped establish us as a prem mid table team e.g. McGinn.

Bigger issue for me is I don't think the style of football is going to get us up at right end of the league anytime soon. Bar Buendia on the ball it was all very pedestrian tonight and already well structured teams have already nullified our style in games (Arsenal, Wolves, West Ham and Palace).
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Goldie.7 on May 19, 2022, 11:12:21 PM
Newcastle are going to finish above us this season despite being in the relegation zone from September to mid February. Targett significantly improved their defence.

What a shambles of a season.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 19, 2022, 11:16:14 PM
There are a lot of international players in the squad, so not too sure the mediocre ones are.

Martinez, Mings, Digne,Coutinho, Luiz, Ings, Watkins all have played at the highest level and for highly ranked nations.

Add Cash, McGinn, Ramsey (England U21) Olsen, Traore etc for lesser nations in the FIFA Rankings or U21, and I donít see too many poor quality players.

Getting them to gel and play consistently together seems to be the issue rather than individual player quality.

So how much longer will you give them. Bang average most of them. I love Oli but he isnít international quality

Just bench them more.

McGinn has practically played every single minute under Gerrard when he's started yet bar the odd good pass he's miles off dominating games at this level. He can still do a job for selected games but need to get beyond this thinking he has to start every week as he's simply not that good anymore.

Same for Oli. Not a terrible goal return this season but I just don't see him having that ruthless air the very best strikers at this level have so would be surprised if he tops last season's form.

They can still be very good squad players for us....if they want to.

Luiz will be the one cashed in on you'd suspect.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Brazilian Villain on May 19, 2022, 11:18:38 PM
Same for Oli.

Can we stick to calling him 'Ollie', just in case he gets mistaken for Mr. McBurnie? :)
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ASHTONVILLA on May 19, 2022, 11:19:03 PM
Too many ordinary players. Watkins, McGinn, Luiz, nowhere near good enough.

If we get offered stupid money for those, I'd let all three go.

Me too, although I like McGinn and Watkins they are being linked with moves for fees way above their value. Luiz I do not rate, and would take the money and run if anyone offered to buy him.

Think the real challenge is in shifting on Wesley (surely our worst ever big money signing), Trez, El Ghazi, Traore, Sanson and other fringe players that are unlikely to see much gametime next season.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 19, 2022, 11:37:41 PM
Too many ordinary players. Watkins, McGinn, Luiz, nowhere near good enough.

If we get offered stupid money for those, I'd let all three go.

Me too, although I like McGinn and Watkins they are being linked with moves for fees way above their value. Luiz I do not rate, and would take the money and run if anyone offered to buy him.

Think the real challenge is in shifting on Wesley (surely our worst ever big money signing), Trez, El Ghazi, Traore, Sanson and other fringe players that are unlikely to see much gametime next season.

Doug only has one year left on his deal so he'll be sold anyway.

Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: tomd2103 on May 20, 2022, 12:16:54 AM
If we end up finishing 14th, then I think it would have gone from being mediocre to a poor season really.  Just feels like a disjointed season, where we have never really got going over a consistent period of time and we just seem to produce exactly the same lacklustre performance that has haunted us for the past decade, particularly at home.  We have changed every aspect of the club multiple times in that period, but we still just can't seem to shake that malaise off.

We're now looking at another major overhaul in the summer and Steven Gerrard has got to get it right, because he can't really afford a poor start next season. 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 20, 2022, 12:20:49 AM
If we end up finishing 14th, then I think it would have gone from being mediocre to a poor season really.  Just feels like a disjointed season, where we have never really got going over a consistent period of time and we just seem to produce exactly the same lacklustre performance that has haunted us for the past decade, particularly at home.  We have changed every aspect of the club multiple times in that period, but we still just can't seem to shake that malaise off.

We're now looking at another major overhaul in the summer and Steven Gerrard has got to get it right, because he can't really afford a poor start next season. 


I don't think it will be major overhaul at all. Yes culling of some squad players but pretty much every club from 3rd downwards will be doing that.

Keeper and most of backline don't need replacing given we've just signed a full back for 25m and other has new 5 year deal.

The key is to stop messing around with the DM position and sign someone with the profile we desperately need there and try to use pre season to work out a consistent forward line up as not convinced Gerrard has worked it out bar deciding Coutinho/Buendia can't really function on pitch at same time.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: tomd2103 on May 20, 2022, 12:27:35 AM
If we end up finishing 14th, then I think it would have gone from being mediocre to a poor season really.  Just feels like a disjointed season, where we have never really got going over a consistent period of time and we just seem to produce exactly the same lacklustre performance that has haunted us for the past decade, particularly at home.  We have changed every aspect of the club multiple times in that period, but we still just can't seem to shake that malaise off.

We're now looking at another major overhaul in the summer and Steven Gerrard has got to get it right, because he can't really afford a poor start next season. 


I don't think it will be major overhaul at all. Yes culling of some squad players but pretty much every club from 3rd downwards will be doing that.

Keeper and most of backline don't need replacing given we've just signed a full back for 25m and other has new 5 year deal.

The key is to stop messing around with the DM position and sign someone with the profile we desperately need there and try to use pre season to work out a consistent forward line up as not convinced Gerrard has worked it out bar deciding Coutinho/Buendia can't really function on pitch at same time.

Agree about the DM position.  I think he needs to sort the midfield out properly, as I just don't think the shape he plays in there is working.  Coutinho and Buendia are dropping too deep and he needs to work out a way to set the team up so they can get in the ball in the final third and hurt teams.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Ads on May 20, 2022, 01:48:54 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Rory on May 20, 2022, 02:20:49 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.

Beautifully concise and entirely accurate. If anything, the first half of last season was against the trend. Like it or not, we're still re-establishing ourselves in the top division.

After Gerrard's initial success, some people were posting that they expected a top 8 finish. It's not been three years since the PO final. We have made huge progress.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Hillbilly on May 20, 2022, 02:34:40 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.
A good point. We've spent a few years aspiring to mediocrity and now we've achieved it.

Think of the stress that fans of Burnley, Leeds, Forest and Huddersfield are going through, think back to what it was like, take a deep breath and relax. Bathe in warm puddle that is mediocrity and focus on future improvements. Picture yourself running through a sea of claret and blue flags. See the confetti cannons explode in a mass of claret and blue. Imagine the trauma for Baggies and Bluenoses. Villa are good. Life is good. This is our future.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: adrenachrome on May 20, 2022, 02:49:44 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.
A good point. We've spent a few years aspiring to mediocrity and now we've achieved it.

Think of the stress that fans of Burnley, Leeds, Forest and Huddersfield are going through, think back to what it was like, take a deep breath and relax. Bathe in warm puddle that is mediocrity and focus on future improvements. Picture yourself running through a sea of claret and blue flags. See the confetti cannons explode in a mass of claret and blue. Imagine the trauma for Baggies and Bluenoses. Villa are good. Life is good. This is our future.

Stuff and nonsense

We want blood and thunder, Sturm und Drang, Larwood aiming at Bradman's Adam's Apple with a leg side field.

Or just some fast bowlers that are not injured, or some strikers that score more goals.

And a DCM if poss. 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ldavfc4eva on May 20, 2022, 06:53:01 AM
As SoccerHQ says, bench more players more often, rotate the squad better.

Add to the group a quality CB to play with Tyrone, a quality DFM and another option up front ad we have all the makings of a top 8 team, if Gerrard makes those buys and spends a fortune in doing so though, next season we must be in a European place at this point next season.

My point was, the overall players we have are international class, so must be far from mediocre, how they are used though and how often is another matter.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: sid1964 on May 20, 2022, 07:01:14 AM
Listening to Garry Thompson on WM last night on the way back from the ""bore fest" he said that for Villa to progress they need a whole new spine of the team, Centre Halves, DM and a striker - that is going to cost a lot of money

The players we have now are okay for mid table to 15th in the league, if we are to really have a go at getting into a European competition in the next 2 seasons (5 year plan) we do need far better quality than we have.

Hopefully the owners will back the manager in the transfer market.

Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ChicagoLion on May 20, 2022, 07:21:11 AM
Listening to Garry Thompson on WM last night on the way back from the ""bore fest" he said that for Villa to progress they need a whole new spine of the team, Centre Halves, DM and a striker

Hopefully the owners will back the manager in the transfer market.
Gary Thompson is completely right.
We are deficient in those 3 key positions.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Ian. on May 20, 2022, 07:21:12 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.

Excellent point.

Itís slow progress, much slower than we all would like to see but itís a good few step away from stinking the league out.

Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Drummond on May 20, 2022, 07:32:03 AM
Too many ordinary players. Watkins, McGinn, Luiz, nowhere near good enough.

If we get offered stupid money for those, I'd let all three go.

Me too, although I like McGinn and Watkins they are being linked with moves for fees way above their value. Luiz I do not rate, and would take the money and run if anyone offered to buy him.

Think the real challenge is in shifting on Wesley (surely our worst ever big money signing), Trez, El Ghazi, Traore, Sanson and other fringe players that are unlikely to see much gametime next season.

You see I don't agree with this valuation thing. Some of our fans see the worst rather than the best. Can we name better players worth less?
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ROBBO on May 20, 2022, 07:32:55 AM
Gerrard said that after thirty seven games the league position doesn't lie, 14th is where we're at. He says he knows that we need to strengthen, I would not be unhappy to see some of the so called better players be sold at decent prices, the likes of McGinn and Luiz, simply because I see little improvement to come in them. Gerrard has to be given a chance at least to the middle of next season.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: algy on May 20, 2022, 07:37:41 AM
Listening to Garry Thompson on WM last night on the way back from the ""bore fest" he said that for Villa to progress they need a whole new spine of the team, Centre Halves, DM and a striker - that is going to cost a lot of money

The players we have now are okay for mid table to 15th in the league, if we are to really have a go at getting into a European competition in the next 2 seasons (5 year plan) we do need far better quality than we have.

Hopefully the owners will back the manager in the transfer market.
I tend to agree with Sid/Garry Thompson on this. It's been a slightly disappointing season - not "Gerrard out" level, but the side gross like it's taken a step back for the first time in a few seasons.

Think the squad will need to be rebuilt over the next couple of seasons of we're to break in to Europe. I think we could actually challenge West Ham with a few relatively small changes, but getting in to the group of sides above those needs some radical changes & players who are well above the level of all bar maybe half a dozen players in the current squad.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Meanwood Villa on May 20, 2022, 08:07:36 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.

Beautifully concise and entirely accurate. If anything, the first half of last season was against the trend. Like it or not, we're still re-establishing ourselves in the top division.

After Gerrard's initial success, some people were posting that they expected a top 8 finish. It's not been three years since the PO final. We have made huge progress.

I'm not a fan of using one of our historic low points as a barometer. It's a bit like comparing ourselves to the Blues. However it did get me thinking about how we have performed compared to other promoted teams. Based on last five years:
2017
Newcastle 10th 13th 13th 12th 10th-13th
Brighton 15th 17th 15th 16th 9th-13th
Huddersfield 16th 20th
2018
Wolves 7th 7th 13th 8th-10th
Cardiff 18th
Fulham 19th
2019
Norwich 20th
Us 17th 11th 14th
Sheff U 9th 20th
2020
Leeds 9th 17th-18th
Albion 19th
Fulham 18th
2021
Norwich 19th-20th
Watford 19th-20th
Brentford 10th-12th

So while we have clearly made a better fist of things than most it is quite sobering to see we are about the level of Mike Ashley's Newcastle and worse than Wolves.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Gareth on May 20, 2022, 08:21:36 AM
I think mediocre describes pretty much every team below the top 5/6 this seasonÖfor us we are top end of the spending charts of those below the top 6 and our home record which the majority judge us on has been largely appalling.

I am still where I was after the Watford defeat that other than Martinez, Digne, Ramsey & now Coutinho Iíd be perfectly fine with any of the other seniors being sold/replaced in the summer.

Team lacks height & true physicality which is why continually we give away stupid fouls in areas of the pitch where we shouldnít. 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Ads on May 20, 2022, 08:39:39 AM
We've finished with our 2nd highest points tally since 2011. We've finished midtable for the 2nd time since then and achieved a boring end of no relegation fight and no European fight.

The club has to now kick on. But the idea we have been mediocre for years is fanciful. We've been shit for a decade, following a brief bit of mediocrity, before being pretty good actually.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Beard82 on May 20, 2022, 08:57:03 AM
This is our 2nd season of mediocrity in a decade.

Beautifully concise and entirely accurate. If anything, the first half of last season was against the trend. Like it or not, we're still re-establishing ourselves in the top division.

After Gerrard's initial success, some people were posting that they expected a top 8 finish. It's not been three years since the PO final. We have made huge progress.

I'm not a fan of using one of our historic low points as a barometer. It's a bit like comparing ourselves to the Blues. However it did get me thinking about how we have performed compared to other promoted teams. Based on last five years:
2017
Newcastle 10th 13th 13th 12th 10th-13th
Brighton 15th 17th 15th 16th 9th-13th
Huddersfield 16th 20th
2018
Wolves 7th 7th 13th 8th-10th
Cardiff 18th
Fulham 19th
2019
Norwich 20th
Us 17th 11th 14th
Sheff U 9th 20th
2020
Leeds 9th 17th-18th
Albion 19th
Fulham 18th
2021
Norwich 19th-20th
Watford 19th-20th
Brentford 10th-12th

So while we have clearly made a better fist of things than most it is quite sobering to see we are about the level of Mike Ashley's Newcastle and worse than Wolves.
I think thatís a really interesting post - it shows how difficult it Is to make promotion stick

But it also makes you see that itís not impossible.  Think this next season is a big turning point we need to see some progress as otherwise all our big talk starts to sound very hollow
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: cdbearsfan on May 20, 2022, 09:26:39 AM
We are also spending more money than any recently promoted side ever, I imagine. There can be no excuses for not challenging for Europe next season. We shouldn't be finishing below nonsense clubs like Brentford and Brighton.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: algy on May 20, 2022, 09:32:26 AM
We've finished with our 2nd highest points tally since 2011. We've finished midtable for the 2nd time since then and achieved a boring end of no relegation fight and no European fight.

The club has to now kick on. But the idea we have been mediocre for years is fanciful. We've been shit for a decade, following a brief bit of mediocrity, before being pretty good actually.
Yep, this. Mediocrity is a massive improvement on the majority of the last decade or so. Not saying that I'm overly enamoured by how this season has panned out, but a bit of perspective is needed here. We also needed to completely rebuild the squad in the 1st season back, then effectively rebuild on top *that* base last season to not be embroiled in another relegation battle.

This season has been a bit disappointing because we've not taken the next step, but in honesty that bothers me far less. Joe leaving was a huge blow & always going to end up with us struggling to move forward.

Don't get me wrong, 14th shouldn't be, and isn't, acceptable for a club like ourselves. But it's also far from the outright disaster given we were playing the likes of Rotherham 3 years ago.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 20, 2022, 09:34:24 AM
Well Gerrard's points per game if extrapolated over the course of the season would have us on 51 points. Not brilliant, but would see us in 8th this season on the same points as Wolves.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Rigadon on May 20, 2022, 09:38:17 AM
It really does depend on what mediocre means to you.  Is top half good enough to be better than mediocre?  Not for me.  If our aim isn't CL (and please, a bloody cup win along the way), then I don't really see the point in our owners putting the money they have into the club.   Top 8?  Nah, that's still mediocre.  Top 6, close but still ultimately a bit underwhelming (remember the MON years feeling like an anticlimax when we didn't make top 4). 

Like others have said though, we have been much less than mediocre for a decade, so progress is still progress.   
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 20, 2022, 09:49:20 AM
Maybe only a minor point but I thought it was really poor that Purslow and Lange didn't stick around to watch the lap of appreciation last night. They disappeared in about a minute after the final whistle, having sat there looking glum all evening. The only club related person who waited and applauded the players was Sir Brian.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Sexual Ealing on May 20, 2022, 09:51:24 AM
Maybe only a minor point but I thought it was really poor that Purslow and Lange didn't stick around to watch the lap of appreciation last night. They disappeared in about a minute after the final whistle, having sat there looking glum all evening. The only club related person who waited and applauded the players was Sir Brian.

Perhaps one (or both) of them is off shortly?
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: kippaxvilla2 on May 20, 2022, 09:53:01 AM
Weíve got billionaire owners that donít spend billions in the same way the sky six do.  Our level of spending gets you Ollie Watkins.  Still learning his trade at this level nothing bad just never going to get you to where you want to be.  Coutinho is the game changer and we need a few more like him.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: kippaxvilla2 on May 20, 2022, 09:54:10 AM
Itís rumoured that Purslow is retiring but only speculation.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: kippaxvilla2 on May 20, 2022, 09:54:29 AM
Paul FaulknerÖ..
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 20, 2022, 10:04:36 AM
In four home games against Spurs, Liverpool, Palace and Burnley, we've had 63 shots, and scored 3 goals. It's pretty obvious therefore, where the main problem lies if we want to break the cycle of mediocrity.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Smithy on May 20, 2022, 10:05:53 AM
Mid-table mediocrity in the Premier League seemed a million miles away three or four years ago. A Pipe dream.  I distinctly remember us getting hammered 4-1 by Sheff Utd in one of Bruce's last games as manager, and thinking, "This is it. This is our level now. Jesus Christ."  If you'd told me then that we'd be ending our third consecutive season in the premier league in mid-table mediocrity less than four years later, I would have laughed.

But the reality is, that's where we are now.  We ARE a mid-table premier league side, a bit too good to be seriously troubled by relegation, not quite good enough to challenge for Europe. I think the players we have should be capable of a little better, but there are obvious glaring gaps in our squad of the quality needed to sustain a top 6/7 challenge.

For me, I came into this season with the expectation that staying still (i.e. 11th) would be a good result given we were losing our best and most influential player and captain.  That we will finish lower than that is dissappointing, but given how things have turned out during the season, I'm not pointing any fingers or calling for anyone to be fired.  No one is "happy" with this season, but it's undeniable the results have been better, points-wise since Gerrard took over.  Not by much, but still better.

But the excuses have to stop at the end of the season.  Gerrard has been backed well so far, and his signings HAVE improved the strength of our squad and first 11.  I expect the same will happen this summer.  Three new signings down the middle of the team who are 100% ready and willing to play the Gerrard way could do wonders for us.

Three seasons of mid-table mediocrity is probably just about the limit for the owners, so I do think Gerrard might find himself under pressure if we reach the January transfer window and we are still in the 12th-14th positions. A full year and two transfer windows should be enough to demonstrate clearly noticeable improvement. I do think we'll all be a little happier when January comes around... well, some of us.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Beard82 on May 20, 2022, 10:12:34 AM
Mid-table mediocrity in the Premier League seemed a million miles away three or four years ago. A Pipe dream.  I distinctly remember us getting hammered 4-1 by Sheff Utd in one of Bruce's last games as manager, and thinking, "This is it. This is our level now. Jesus Christ."  If you'd told me then that we'd be ending our third consecutive season in the premier league in mid-table mediocrity less than four years later, I would have laughed.

But the reality is, that's where we are now.  We ARE a mid-table premier league side, a bit too good to be seriously troubled by relegation, not quite good enough to challenge for Europe. I think the players we have should be capable of a little better, but there are obvious glaring gaps in our squad of the quality needed to sustain a top 6/7 challenge.

For me, I came into this season with the expectation that staying still (i.e. 11th) would be a good result given we were losing our best and most influential player and captain.  That we will finish lower than that is dissappointing, but given how things have turned out during the season, I'm not pointing any fingers or calling for anyone to be fired.  No one is "happy" with this season, but it's undeniable the results have been better, points-wise since Gerrard took over.  Not by much, but still better.

But the excuses have to stop at the end of the season.  Gerrard has been backed well so far, and his signings HAVE improved the strength of our squad and first 11.  I expect the same will happen this summer.  Three new signings down the middle of the team who are 100% ready and willing to play the Gerrard way could do wonders for us.

Three seasons of mid-table mediocrity is probably just about the limit for the owners, so I do think Gerrard might find himself under pressure if we reach the January transfer window and we are still in the 12th-14th positions. A full year and two transfer windows should be enough to demonstrate clearly noticeable improvement. I do think we'll all be a little happier when January comes around... well, some of us.
A very good level headed summary that I agree with fully. 

We've come a long way, but this next steps was always going to be harder.  I think SG has laid some solid foundations, and I think we have turned the corner over the last 5 games - Digne being in the squad helps, Mings looking more solid, Emi has been excellent, strikers have scored a couple. 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: curiousorange on May 20, 2022, 10:17:36 AM
I think there's an argument that mediocrity is self-perpetuating: if you go out of the cups and are mid-table, you'll see football that's neither too good not too bad. When we went up from the Champ we played some excellent, thrilling stuff which gathered its own momentum. When we were getting relegated, we could barely go ten minutes without screwing up. When we survived, the game we played barely qualified as football but somehow got us over the line.

For me, we lack the ambition to be anything other than mediocre right now. There's no target other than to be 'big'. We're in a stage where we expect to lose to City but are incandescent when we can't beat Burnley. What are we? What's the next step? Answer those properly and you'll start moving.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Brazilian Villain on May 20, 2022, 10:23:00 AM
For me, we lack the ambition to be anything other than mediocre right now.

Quite the opposite for me, it's the first time in my lifetime that I've felt we've had first rate, ambitious owners. 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Jon Crofts on May 20, 2022, 10:25:22 AM
In four home games against Spurs, Liverpool, Palace and Burnley, we've had 63 shots, and scored 3 goals. It's pretty obvious therefore, where the main problem lies if we want to break the cycle of mediocrity.

Wow is that right? To be fair, Pope played out of his skin last night, we could have won that 5-1 easily.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Brazilian Villain on May 20, 2022, 10:27:45 AM
In four home games against Spurs, Liverpool, Palace and Burnley, we've had 63 shots, and scored 3 goals. It's pretty obvious therefore, where the main problem lies if we want to break the cycle of mediocrity.

Wow is that right? To be fair, Pope played out of his skin last night, we could have won that 5-1 easily.

Someone's going to get a hammering from us soon (erm...next season).
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: mike on May 20, 2022, 10:34:08 AM
I think finishing below Crystal Palace, Brighton and even fucking Brentford is the definition of mediocrity. Especially as one of those were promoted last year and they all have way less money than we do. What's worse is that we seem to have signed several players who are the spiritual children of Micah Richards and Concrete Ron which is funds wasted and we are carrying their wages for years to come.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: curiousorange on May 20, 2022, 10:52:25 AM
For me, we lack the ambition to be anything other than mediocre right now.

Quite the opposite for me, it's the first time in my lifetime that I've felt we've had first rate, ambitious owners.

I agree in terms of ownership, but not on the playing side. It's almost as if somebody's saying, "look, you don't know how this works; we have to be crap for a bit for reasons you don't understand". FFP is partly to blame for that, I guess.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: eamonn on May 20, 2022, 11:40:15 AM
Finishing below Brentford and Newcastle is...a load of shite and inexcusable really.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Chris Smith on May 20, 2022, 12:17:50 PM
I suppose mediocre is about right if you take an average of our performances this season. Iíve seen us play above that level a number of times but also at times where reaching mediocrity seems like an impossible dream.

It has to improve quickly as otherwise this time next year weíll be arguing once again about a new manager needing time to get his own players in.

As The Stranglers said, Something Better Change.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: nick harper on May 20, 2022, 01:40:00 PM
Interesting that our 55 points last season would have us 8th pushing 7th now and European qualification so that does reflect how disappointing this season has been. Like it or not, losing our best player in a generation has set us back.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Rigadon on May 20, 2022, 03:09:41 PM
Thatís right Nick.  Though Iíd say our best player possibly ever (I know thatís a massive claim, but itís difficult to think of another individual who stood out so much), but certainly since the 90s.  Him leaving was a huge blow. 

I think weíll give it a really good go next year, so Iím optimistic that we will at last do better than expected.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: dave.woodhall on May 20, 2022, 03:26:52 PM
There just seems to be something about the Villa over the past twenty years that drags everyone down who comes into contact with us. Even when O'Neill was spending big, the football was rarely more than workmanlike.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: charlatan on May 20, 2022, 03:34:48 PM
That was his method. At least now we see flashes of brilliance. It's not the consistent mediocrity (at best) of our pre-relegation years.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: clash city rocker on May 20, 2022, 03:59:57 PM
So many points off the top 4 this season. Yep we will make changes this summer but so will everyone else. We are 14th and 2 additional players won't put us 4th. We have a few world class players and a lot of 14th in the league players. If I had to pick our best 11 players I could have a stab at it but ask me to pick the best 11 team players who could play in certain system or shape and I would be struggling and I think that's where Gerrard finds himself.We just don't seem to he the sum 9f our parts.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: chrisw1 on May 20, 2022, 04:40:56 PM
Players who I think could get a decent amount of game time in a top 6 team:

Martinez
Digne
Ramsey
McGInn
Coutinho
Buendia

Ramsey is still a bit raw and McGinn can be hit and miss, but I can see both doing a job at the likes of Arsenal, Spurs or Man Utd and think both would benefit from better players around them.

Lots of work to do.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: dave.woodhall on May 20, 2022, 04:59:20 PM
As I said after beating Arsenal in 2020.

Then tonight happened. Because no matter how much you try to pretend you donít care anymore, sooner or later you realise that youíre only fooling yourself. It doesnít matter what the level, how good, bad or indifferent, or Ďow many times they break yer Ďeart, once theyíve got you, youíre theirs for life. They can make you feel like youíve just been kicked in the guts repeatedly (often), or looking for the nearest bridge to jump off (sometimes), but no matter how many times that happens, itís all worth it for nights like this.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: algy on May 20, 2022, 05:01:05 PM
Players who I think could get a decent amount of game time in a top 6 team:

Martinez
Digne
Ramsey
McGInn
Coutinho
Buendia

Ramsey is still a bit raw and McGinn can be hit and miss, but I can see both doing a job at the likes of Arsenal, Spurs or Man Utd and think both would benefit from better players around them.

Lots of work to do.
My take too, although I might add Matty Cash to the list.

Think either way we're about ten players off being able to really put the willies up the top 6 sides. Probably 3-4 seasons of strong recruitment. Tho Europe might be achievable before then, think we could catch up West Ham next season, but the gap above them is far larger than it currently looks.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: olaftab on May 20, 2022, 05:01:55 PM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.
Not 30 years but close. 1996 was a very competitive season end for us. Won the League cup, semi final of the FA cup and 4th place in the League. it was the "love it" season but after that Doug decided to prune us down a little like his roses and restricted the fertiliser and here we are.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Stu on May 20, 2022, 05:09:02 PM
There just seems to be something about the Villa over the past twenty years that drags everyone down who comes into contact with us. Even when O'Neill was spending big, the football was rarely more than workmanlike.

I think the promotion season and then the first two back in the Prem were some of the most optimistic I've been in that timeframe. The whole club was united behind a common cause with Villa men as captain and manager. Ratboy leaving has had a serious effect on the club's morale as a whole I think. We need new heroes.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: clash city rocker on May 20, 2022, 05:32:28 PM
As I said after beating Arsenal in 2020.

Then tonight happened. Because no matter how much you try to pretend you donít care anymore, sooner or later you realise that youíre only fooling yourself. It doesnít matter what the level, how good, bad or indifferent, or Ďow many times they break yer Ďeart, once theyíve got you, youíre theirs for life. They can make you feel like youíve just been kicked in the guts repeatedly (often), or looking for the nearest bridge to jump off (sometimes), but no matter how many times that happens, itís all worth it for nights like this.

Totally.  Like the most beautiful woman you have ever seen. You can't forget them or get over them.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Sexual Ealing on May 20, 2022, 05:46:20 PM
There just seems to be something about the Villa over the past twenty years that drags everyone down who comes into contact with us. Even when O'Neill was spending big, the football was rarely more than workmanlike.

We need new heroes.

Very much this.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Beard82 on May 20, 2022, 05:55:36 PM
There just seems to be something about the Villa over the past twenty years that drags everyone down who comes into contact with us. Even when O'Neill was spending big, the football was rarely more than workmanlike.

We need new heroes.

Very much this.
Exactly - I think this is why I and many other have found this season frustrating - we thought we had our new hereos and there gone
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: darren woolley on May 20, 2022, 06:17:32 PM
I'm convinced we will improve in the coming season's if West Ham can challenge the top six then so can we.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: dave.woodhall on May 20, 2022, 06:41:32 PM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.
Not 30 years but close. 1996 was a very competitive season end for us. Won the League cup, semi final of the FA cup and 4th place in the League. it was the "love it" season but after that Doug decided to prune us down a little like his roses and restricted the fertiliser and here we are.

Brian Little would tell you that the money was there, he just bought the wrong players. I think history has shown that the big mistake was appointing John Gregory; however well you may or may not have thought he did, a bit more imagination from all concerned could have been massive.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Clark W Griswold on May 20, 2022, 08:23:20 PM
Breaking our transfer record two seasons in a row with Sasa Curcic and Stan Collymore were huge mistakes. We totally lost momentum and although we signed some good players between 98 and 2002 we also lost quite a few. Doug then pretty much gave up by 03 and took 3 years to sell us.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: brontebilly on May 20, 2022, 10:51:15 PM
Breaking our transfer record two seasons in a row with Sasa Curcic and Stan Collymore were huge mistakes. We totally lost momentum and although we signed some good players between 98 and 2002 we also lost quite a few. Doug then pretty much gave up by 03 and took 3 years to sell us.

They were two absolute disasters. Should he have put a bit more faith in Milosevic at the time instead of going all out for Collymore? Arsenal signed Vieria the same summer we got in Curcic!
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 20, 2022, 11:02:12 PM
Interesting that our 55 points last season would have us 8th pushing 7th now and European qualification so that does reflect how disappointing this season has been. Like it or not, losing our best player in a generation has set us back.

Big shoes to fill but Buendia has been much improved since January at least and at least positively impacts on majority of matches he plays compared to first three months when he was really struggling.

Coutinho fizzled out but we saw his quality in first 5-6 games.

We need pre season to try to figure out how to get them combining effectively on the pitch at same time. If we can achieve that I think that gets us past 50 points next season as for all the criticism our defence gets we've largely conceded similar number of goals to a few teams in 5th-8th positions.

Key is getting DM right. If we do then I think matching points total of 20/21 is realistic and who knows how high we could finish.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: ChicagoLion on May 20, 2022, 11:04:14 PM
We also have to solve the striker problem.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 20, 2022, 11:07:56 PM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.
Not 30 years but close. 1996 was a very competitive season end for us. Won the League cup, semi final of the FA cup and 4th place in the League. it was the "love it" season but after that Doug decided to prune us down a little like his roses and restricted the fertiliser and here we are.

Brian Little would tell you that the money was there, he just bought the wrong players. I think history has shown that the big mistake was appointing John Gregory; however well you may or may not have thought he did, a bit more imagination from all concerned could have been massive.

Gregory was fine for first 18 months. Was in danger of getting sacked when we had that poor run in early 1999 season but then we responded with incredible run of form that should've got us to two cup finals and also a solid league position.

At the start he thought big with the signings but mistake was giving him a new contract just before the cup final (reminds me of Arteta getting one and Arsenal immediately implode to miss out on top 4).

Should've waited and perhaps we could've still kicked on after the trauma of the Chelsea match with new manager and group of players. Instead we've never recovered at all from losing that game.

22 years today btw, a few 6th place finishes is all we've mustered in the league since then and two cup finals.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 20, 2022, 11:11:19 PM
Breaking our transfer record two seasons in a row with Sasa Curcic and Stan Collymore were huge mistakes. We totally lost momentum and although we signed some good players between 98 and 2002 we also lost quite a few. Doug then pretty much gave up by 03 and took 3 years to sell us.

We gave up straight after losing the cup final.

James, Ugo, Southgate, Merson all put in transfer requests IIRC and Dion was never quite the same force after his neck injury so our spine was massively weakened and we went from a top 6 team to one just treading water in premier league.

2003 I actually thought the O'Leary appointment was a masterstroke but other than that nice run in his first season we again flattered to deceive.

Then didn't quite believe we were good enough to really kick on under O'Neill which is a common failing with the club, hopefully one day it will change.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: dave.woodhall on May 20, 2022, 11:36:36 PM


Gregory was fine for first 18 months. Was in danger of getting sacked when we had that poor run in early 1999 season but then we responded with incredible run of form that should've got us to two cup finals and also a solid league position.

At the start he thought big with the signings but mistake was giving him a new contract just before the cup final (reminds me of Arteta getting one and Arsenal immediately implode to miss out on top 4).

Should've waited and perhaps we could've still kicked on after the trauma of the Chelsea match with new manager and group of players. Instead we've never recovered at all from losing that game.

22 years today btw, a few 6th place finishes is all we've mustered in the league since then and two cup finals.

Gregory started to fall apart after his first Christmas, at the time when Stan went AWOL. We had a bad end to his first full season and the start of the next one, then we recovered to get to the cup final. From then on it was, as you say, a case of treading water. He did okay, and in hindsight he did a better job than we realised given that he was dealing with a chairman who was waiting for him to do something sackable. The trouble was that we were in such a good position and for the first time in decades money was available yet he spent so much time, as he put it, fighting fires and most of the money on average or past-it players. A more imaginative appointment who made imaginative signings and we could have been well set.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: LeonW on May 21, 2022, 12:25:37 AM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.
Not 30 years but close. 1996 was a very competitive season end for us. Won the League cup, semi final of the FA cup and 4th place in the League. it was the "love it" season but after that Doug decided to prune us down a little like his roses and restricted the fertiliser and here we are.

Brian Little would tell you that the money was there, he just bought the wrong players. I think history has shown that the big mistake was appointing John Gregory; however well you may or may not have thought he did, a bit more imagination from all concerned could have been massive.

I could not agree with this more. I liked John Gregory as a bloke and was angry when he left but neither get away from the fact that he was the wrong appointment at that time. I remember being shocked when he walked into that press conference.

If thereís anything that sums up the Villa for me, itís undertaking the wrong action at the most critical junctures.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Percy McCarthy on May 21, 2022, 06:19:33 AM
We are also spending more money than any recently promoted side ever, I imagine. There can be no excuses for not challenging for Europe next season. We shouldn't be finishing below nonsense clubs like Brentford and Brighton.

Not much of a net spend last summer though.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: N'ZMAV on May 21, 2022, 06:55:44 AM
appointing McLeish was the moment we decided to cement our place in mediocrity forever
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: LeonW on May 21, 2022, 07:12:10 AM
appointing McLeish was the moment we decided to cement our place in mediocrity forever

Iíll always remember how my blood ran cold upon hearing the news about that appointment (Iím sure it was a Sunday). It wasnít so much that heíd been at SHA as much as it was that he was clearly a mediocre manager who set out sides to play awful football. That was when Lerner truly gave up.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: N'ZMAV on May 21, 2022, 07:38:14 AM
I was thinking 'this surely can't happen, Lerner and Faulkner can't be that stupid...'

oops.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Goldenballs on May 21, 2022, 08:08:41 AM
I remember reading on here at the time, it started with us laughing that the press could up with such a stupid rumour. Then his odds started to tumble but we still laughed it off, then it slowly started to look like it was actually happening....
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Lucky Eddie on May 21, 2022, 08:25:58 AM
If only a few thousand more had felt strongly enough to turn uo for that protest.


Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Steve67 on May 21, 2022, 09:14:04 AM
Brian Little, Ron Atkinson and Martin O'Neill are the only appointments I have ever really been excited about.  I was a tad young when Ron Saunders was appointed, God bless him.   The appointment of Lambert, I thought at the time was a good one but turned our to be poor.  McLeish, wow, just wow!
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: N'ZMAV on May 21, 2022, 09:16:07 AM
Lambert made sense at the time.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: olaftab on May 21, 2022, 09:29:19 AM
Brian Little, Ron Atkinson and Martin O'Neill are the only appointments I have ever really been excited about.  I was a tad young when Ron Saunders was appointed, God bless him.   The appointment of Lambert, I thought at the time was a good one but turned our to be poor.  McLeish, wow, just wow!
I would agree with you Steve but add Graham Taylor to that list. The appointment of Ron Saunders was anything but exciting. We appointed Ron when he was struggling at Man City. Believe it or not I got excited at DOíL but truly detested him towards the end.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 21, 2022, 09:53:07 AM
Breaking our transfer record two seasons in a row with Sasa Curcic and Stan Collymore were huge mistakes. We totally lost momentum and although we signed some good players between 98 and 2002 we also lost quite a few. Doug then pretty much gave up by 03 and took 3 years to sell us.

I was living in Wigan and working for the firm that did Bolton's travel arrangements at the time, and saw a lot of Bolton games as a result. Curcic was absolutely brilliant for them, a bit like Kinkladze for Manchester City in that he could run with the ball seemingly glued to his feet and go past people at will. I was hugely excited by his signing, which was only heightened by his debut in which he was absolutely superb.

Ssimilarly with Collymore, he was seen as the fabled "last piece in the jigsaw" and a real statement of intent. That it all went so wrong, is still a massive shame. For two seasons under Sir Brian we looked absolutely brilliant, and those two had the talent to really make us contenders. Sigh.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 21, 2022, 10:00:42 AM
Lambert made sense at the time.

As did David O'Leary at the time. I feel sick just typing that, but his first season was very good indeed, especially the second half, and even in his second season we were top 6 at the start of December. All massively down hill after that, the pug nosed twat.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: dave.woodhall on May 21, 2022, 10:03:46 AM
Breaking our transfer record two seasons in a row with Sasa Curcic and Stan Collymore were huge mistakes. We totally lost momentum and although we signed some good players between 98 and 2002 we also lost quite a few. Doug then pretty much gave up by 03 and took 3 years to sell us.

I was living in Wigan and working for the firm that did Bolton's travel arrangements at the time, and saw a lot of Bolton games as a result. Curcic was absolutely brilliant for them, a bit like Kinkladze for Manchester City in that he could run with the ball seemingly glued to his feet and go past people at will. I was hugely excited by his signing, which was only heightened by his debut in which he was absolutely superb.

Ssimilarly with Collymore, he was seen as the fabled "last piece in the jigsaw" and a real statement of intent. That it all went so wrong, is still a massive shame. For two seasons under Sir Brian we looked absolutely brilliant, and those two had the talent to really make us contenders. Sigh.

They had an even greater talent of ruining the dressing room. Collymore, Curcic, Milosevic and Bosnich in the same team. No wonder the manager went grey.
 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Meanwood Villa on May 21, 2022, 10:39:17 AM
Lambert made sense at the time.

As did David O'Leary at the time. I feel sick just typing that, but his first season was very good indeed, especially the second half, and even in his second season we were top 6 at the start of December. All massively down hill after that, the pug nosed twat.

I think it's perfectly acceptable to hold both the view that O'Leary is a self serving cocksocket of the highest order and that he did well in his first season with us
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Meanwood Villa on May 21, 2022, 10:43:06 AM
Also agree that Lambert looked a good appointment on paper. Liverpool got Rodgers at the same time and I thought we'd got the better deal. Close run thing who I detest more out of Lambert and O'Leary but I think Lambert edges it because the football was more soul destroying.

Interesting points made about appointing Gregory and it being a mistake. I think I like him more now than I did when he was our manager. It always seemed like he preferred dull and functional over exciting and innovative. Not unlike O'Neill in that respect.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 21, 2022, 10:50:17 AM
Also agree that Lambert looked a good appointment on paper. Liverpool got Rodgers at the same time and I thought we'd got the better deal. Close run thing who I detest more out of Lambert and O'Leary but I think Lambert edges it because the football was more soul destroying.

Interesting points made about appointing Gregory and it being a mistake. I think I like him more now than I did when he was our manager. It always seemed like he preferred dull and functional over exciting and innovative. Not unlike O'Neill in that respect.

It was a mixed bag with Gregory. True he signed dullards like Steve Stone, Steve Watson and Alan Thompson, but he also bought in Merson, Carbone and Angel.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 21, 2022, 01:19:15 PM


Gregory was fine for first 18 months. Was in danger of getting sacked when we had that poor run in early 1999 season but then we responded with incredible run of form that should've got us to two cup finals and also a solid league position.

At the start he thought big with the signings but mistake was giving him a new contract just before the cup final (reminds me of Arteta getting one and Arsenal immediately implode to miss out on top 4).

Should've waited and perhaps we could've still kicked on after the trauma of the Chelsea match with new manager and group of players. Instead we've never recovered at all from losing that game.

22 years today btw, a few 6th place finishes is all we've mustered in the league since then and two cup finals.

Gregory started to fall apart after his first Christmas, at the time when Stan went AWOL. We had a bad end to his first full season and the start of the next one, then we recovered to get to the cup final. From then on it was, as you say, a case of treading water. He did okay, and in hindsight he did a better job than we realised given that he was dealing with a chairman who was waiting for him to do something sackable. The trouble was that we were in such a good position and for the first time in decades money was available yet he spent so much time, as he put it, fighting fires and most of the money on average or past-it players. A more imaginative appointment who made imaginative signings and we could have been well set.

IIRC when we sacked SBL Ruud Gullit was available and Evening Mail polls were having him as landslide favourite.

He went to Newcastle and totally flopped.

Did Gregory really waste as much money as O'Neill?

In the early days it was exciting getting in big time players like Merson and Dublin and David James was a superb signing at 1.5m to replace Bosnich. Also had Delaney coming in at about 400 grand who was a good player for us and Boateng at 4.5m was good value for a few seasons aswell.

Think problem was the squad punts like Alan Thompson and Steve Watson didn't offer much at all but name me a Villa manager in last 30 years who hasn't signed dud squad players at some point.

Where I thought Gregory was really unlucky was losing Yorke six months into his reign. Can you imagine him playing slightly off Dion Dublin for a full season? And we also lost Bosnich to injury for half of 98/99 which meant our defence starting shipping 2-3 on regular basis.

I still see O'Neill era as more of a wasted opportunity given what we were spending in that 3 years. We all knew Man. City were coming so we really needed to get into CL at least once as Spurs in that period to give us some chance of building a side capable of staying top 6.

It's a bit like Grealish two years ago having to pass the ball to Borja Baston or Jota, too often we have a world class player in the team and the quality simply isn't there around them. Signing Darren Bent and then losing Young and Downing six months later is another example.

To stop being mediocre we need to keep signing good players when we have some so DM is critical this summer, let's hope we get a good one in.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 21, 2022, 01:24:11 PM
Lambert made sense at the time.

Brendan Rodgers was also available that summer although think Liverpool quickly tapped him up.

Lambert was decent but six months later Southampton got in Pochettino who was completely unknown to UK audience at the time but completely transformed them so that was example of time of forward thinking club who thought outside the box and had 4-5 really good seasons as a reward.

Too often we go for safe appointments which restricts us. Even Gerrard I think could be deemed as safe given Purslow knows him so well.

I think this side is crying out for an experienced continental coach to come in and implement a modern style to it, perhaps that's the plan post Gerrard. Let's hope we're not miles off it in premier league when time comes.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: eamonn on May 21, 2022, 01:33:11 PM
I doubt there is a plan post-Gerrard. Feels more that we've given him the keys to the place to do whatever the fcuk he wants.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 21, 2022, 01:39:54 PM
Lambert made sense at the time.

Brendan Rodgers was also available that summer although think Liverpool quickly tapped him up.

Lambert was decent but six months later Southampton got in Pochettino who was completely unknown to UK audience at the time but completely transformed them so that was example of time of forward thinking club who thought outside the box and had 4-5 really good seasons as a reward.

Too often we go for safe appointments which restricts us. Even Gerrard I think could be deemed as safe given Purslow knows him so well.

I think this side is crying out for an experienced continental coach to come in and implement a modern style to it, perhaps that's the plan post Gerrard. Let's hope we're not miles off it in premier league when time comes.

There's no guarantee with any coach. Look at Man U, rightly got rid of OGS, only to replace him with an experienced continental coach who did even worse. Then there's Mourinho and Nuno at Spurs, Benitez and Ancelotti at Everton, Ranieri at Watford, Bielsa at Leeds, Pellegrini at West Ham, etc etc. There's no guarantees at all, and I'd strongly argue that a good ownership team is the most important part of having a successful club.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Sexual Ealing on May 21, 2022, 01:43:29 PM
I doubt there is a plan post-Gerrard. Feels more that we've given him the keys to the place to do whatever the fcuk he wants.

It does indeed feel like that.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: clash city rocker on May 21, 2022, 02:09:44 PM
I doubt there is a plan post-Gerrard. Feels more that we've given him the keys to the place to do whatever the fcuk he wants.

It does indeed feel like that.

I think he will have some testing kpi's set for him. People like our owners don't give management a carte blanche and put up with them under achieving
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Chris Smith on May 21, 2022, 02:43:09 PM
I doubt there is a plan post-Gerrard. Feels more that we've given him the keys to the place to do whatever the fcuk he wants.

It does indeed feel like that.

I think he will have some testing kpi's set for him. People like our owners don't give management a carte blanche and put up with them under achieving

Weíll see, and hopefully itís not a problem we have to address, but you get a hint that Purslow is a bit in awe of Gerrard and heíll get more leeway than others might have.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Risso on May 21, 2022, 03:43:59 PM
I doubt there is a plan post-Gerrard. Feels more that we've given him the keys to the place to do whatever the fcuk he wants.

None of the top 6 clubs or indeed any other appear to have a plan for what happens when the current man in charge departs, and why would they? Other than "appoint a good manager" what is it that you think they could do? Unless your team is Watford, you have no way of knowing how the current guy is going to pan out or how long he'll be in charge, or who might be available once he's gone.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Flin5tone on May 21, 2022, 04:38:50 PM
The Football Club is being used by Purslow to achieve his own personal desires. Bringing in Steven and he looked like a child in a sweetshop when he announced Philipe to the "most dedicated of our supporters" at the awards night.

 
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Brazilian Villain on May 21, 2022, 04:45:34 PM
The Football Club is being used by Purslow to achieve his own personal desires. Bringing in Steven and he looked like a child in a sweetshop when he announced Philipe to the "most dedicated of our supporters" at the awards night.

You're just peeved that Brazilian he's brought in is called Phil instead of Fred.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: wince on May 21, 2022, 04:49:45 PM
 Still think we will come good. I remember the 94-95 season and staying up on the last day. Then the following season, best time in my lifetime being a Villa fan. Iím sad it isnít Deano with us and that it didnít work out but I do feel good for next season. Other than first bit of season I never felt we would go down nor did I think we would get into Europe.

A frustrating season but we are still in top flight where we deserve to be
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: N'ZMAV on May 21, 2022, 05:16:42 PM
The Football Club is being used by Purslow to achieve his own personal desires. Bringing in Steven and he looked like a child in a sweetshop when he announced Philipe to the "most dedicated of our supporters" at the awards night.

 
what do you want him to do? look like a miserable bastard?
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: wince on May 21, 2022, 05:54:05 PM
The Football Club is being used by Purslow to achieve his own personal desires. Bringing in Steven and he looked like a child in a sweetshop when he announced Philipe to the "most dedicated of our supporters" at the awards night.

 
what do you want him to do? look like a miserable bastard?
Donít bother mate he is trolling harder than a limp bizkit tribute act
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 22, 2022, 06:14:33 PM
Think that game sums up our mediocrity in last 20 years.

O.k it meant nothing to us and everything to Man. City but still.

We played great for 70 minutes and yet to implode like that afterwards is simply unacceptable whoever the opposition is.

And twice in six months given the same happened v Wolves is terrible standards so I think a few of them today have played themselves out of being a part of next few seasons in Gerrard's mind.

Given Liverpool won in the end I think he would relish kung fu kicking a few of them in the dressing room if he was allowed.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 22, 2022, 06:18:08 PM
(https://i.giphy.com/media/3Mhoq0UJFm1EwNL6Ug/giphy.webp)
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Villan82 on May 22, 2022, 06:19:27 PM
Collapsing at home to Wolves with 10 minutes to go is one thing. Collapsing away to Shitty when they need a win to win the title is another. Maybe some perspective is needed?

*runs for cover*
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: pauliewalnuts on May 22, 2022, 06:20:16 PM
Collapsing at home to WOlves with 10 minutes to go is one thing. Collapsing away to Shitty when they need a win to win the title is another. Maybe some perspective is needed?

*runs for cover*

Yeah, they are two different things entirely.

Only, we managed both of them.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 22, 2022, 06:35:06 PM
Collapsing at home to Wolves with 10 minutes to go is one thing. Collapsing away to Shitty when they need a win to win the title is another. Maybe some perspective is needed?

*runs for cover*

For it to happen twice in six months under different managers simply cannot be acceptable if we ever want to be a serious team in prem again otherwise you just accept low standards.

Today we could've signed off on a disappointing season on a relative high. Instead we pretty much s**t ourselves when they got it back to 1-2.

We used to do this most seasons against the other Manchester team of course.

Think back to mid 90s and we had the backbone to go to the best teams like Man. United and grind out 0-0s. And indeed come back from 2 down v Arsenal in the league cup SF. Under O'Neill we had a decent record against the five teams that regularly finished above us back then aswell.

If we want to be serious team in premier league again in feature we simply have to stand up at these moments given we were 2 up with 15 minutes left and by their very high standards Man. City had played a terrible game up to then. I'm not really convinced other teams around us in league like Newcastle or Brentford would've folded in similar situation.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Ads on May 22, 2022, 07:31:22 PM
Newcastle got humped 5 here a few weeks ago.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 22, 2022, 07:35:52 PM
Newcastle got humped 5 here a few weeks ago.

Different context.

I meant if one of those teams had gone 2 up today. For example Palace went 2 up at Man. City in late October.....and won 2-0. They also held Man. City 0-0 at home to prove it wasn't a fluke. And finished above us.

We're just a nearly team in these scenarios I'm afraid too often and that gets reflected in the league position at the end of the season.

Hopefully it changes some day but we need to sign players who relish being 2 up v teams like Man. City and don't get scared of winning.

As much as he feels too old now Suarez has that type of mentality and that sort of character would be huge in these type of games next season to rattle opposition and do the dirty stuff necessary to get us over the line.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: N'ZMAV on May 22, 2022, 07:36:48 PM
huge lack of leaders in this squad isn't helping us be as average as we are
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Ads on May 22, 2022, 07:37:05 PM
But they weren't 2-0 up. And they got battered, 5. In fact they conceded a few goals after 90 minutes, so yes there is a different context. They were shite and weren't playing against the best side in the country in their most important game of the season.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: Rudy65 on May 22, 2022, 07:37:25 PM
Collapsing at home to Wolves with 10 minutes to go is one thing. Collapsing away to Shitty when they need a win to win the title is another. Maybe some perspective is needed?

*runs for cover*

For it to happen twice in six months under different managers simply cannot be acceptable if we ever want to be a serious team in prem again otherwise you just accept low standards.

Today we could've signed off on a disappointing season on a relative high. Instead we pretty much s**t ourselves when they got it back to 1-2.

We used to do this most seasons against the other Manchester team of course.

Think back to mid 90s and we had the backbone to go to the best teams like Man. United and grind out 0-0s. And indeed come back from 2 down v Arsenal in the league cup SF. Under O'Neill we had a decent record against the five teams that regularly finished above us back then aswell.

If we want to be serious team in premier league again in feature we simply have to stand up at these moments given we were 2 up with 15 minutes left and by their very high standards Man. City had played a terrible game up to then. I'm not really convinced other teams around us in league like Newcastle or Brentford would've folded in similar situation.

I think weíve gained 4 points out of 42 against the top 7 teams. All points against Man U. Pathetic
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 22, 2022, 07:49:23 PM
huge lack of leaders in this squad isn't helping us be as average as we are

I thought Mings was great today for most of the game. He lead by example.

Think Martinez would've made a difference aswell and may have tipped one of the goals around the post.

Last quarter of today just showed how lightweight and brittle our midfield can be when it comes to the crunch.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: SoccerHQ on May 22, 2022, 07:51:50 PM
But they weren't 2-0 up. And they got battered, 5. In fact they conceded a few goals after 90 minutes, so yes there is a different context. They were shite and weren't playing against the best side in the country in their most important game of the season.

O.k West Ham then, 2 up last week and scrambled to a 2-2 at least (I know mainly down to Mahrez).

Can't see us finishing above Newcastle tbh with the momentum they have now next season.

We simply must be closer to likes of Wolves, Leicester and West Ham though.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: danno on May 22, 2022, 07:56:17 PM
Two goals clear with not long left, away from home in a game with so much riding on it and then a dramatic collapse.
No not us! Man City a few weeks ago against Real Madrid.

Its football it happens, and to much better sides than us.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: wince on May 22, 2022, 08:35:24 PM
Two goals clear with not long left, away from home in a game with so much riding on it and then a dramatic collapse.
No not us! Man City a few weeks ago against Real Madrid.

Its football it happens, and to much better sides than us.
This. Need some perspective. Nobody is saying it wasnít shit but we just donít have the quality the likes of oil fc have.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: mr-villa on May 22, 2022, 08:44:41 PM
We need a bit of perspective, Leicester finished in 8th 7 points ahead of us which are the four points we just dropped at home against both Palace and Burnley this past week and one win against relegated Watford.  Hardly a massive gap to bridge in my opinion.
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Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: BC Villain on May 23, 2022, 08:35:47 AM
I hate to say this, but being honest, we've been mediocre for way more than ten years. More like thirty. Not that I care, but I think the general public's consensus of Villa would be a middling, do-nothing club, because a whole generation has grown up with us being also-rans. I'm not sure how to change that.

Saying that, in this timeframe we've lost more cup finals than some clubs will see forth-rounds.
Not 30 years but close. 1996 was a very competitive season end for us. Won the League cup, semi final of the FA cup and 4th place in the League. it was the "love it" season but after that Doug decided to prune us down a little like his roses and restricted the fertiliser and here we are.

Brian Little would tell you that the money was there, he just bought the wrong players. I think history has shown that the big mistake was appointing John Gregory; however well you may or may not have thought he did, a bit more imagination from all concerned could have been massive.

Gregory was fine for first 18 months. Was in danger of getting sacked when we had that poor run in early 1999 season but then we responded with incredible run of form that should've got us to two cup finals and also a solid league position.

At the start he thought big with the signings but mistake was giving him a new contract just before the cup final (reminds me of Arteta getting one and Arsenal immediately implode to miss out on top 4).

Should've waited and perhaps we could've still kicked on after the trauma of the Chelsea match with new manager and group of players. Instead we've never recovered at all from losing that game.

22 years today btw, a few 6th place finishes is all we've mustered in the league since then and two cup finals.

I always thought Gregory's downfall was post cup final when he got rather preoccupied in fighting with Ellis (the infamous time warp comments).  Love him or loathe him, there was only ever going to be one winner of that battle.
Title: Re: Mediocrity.
Post by: LeonW on May 26, 2022, 05:01:13 AM
The Football Club is being used by Purslow to achieve his own personal desires. Bringing in Steven and he looked like a child in a sweetshop when he announced Philipe to the "most dedicated of our supporters" at the awards night.

 
what do you want him to do? look like a miserable bastard?
Donít bother mate he is trolling harder than a limp bizkit tribute act

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