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Paul Lambert’s arrival has been a breath of fresh air for Villa fans who has said lots of positive things about the club, the fans and forgetting last season’s disappointment.
Aston Villa today announced that they would be re-introducing the giant screen in the corner between the North Stand and the Doug Ellis stand in between the home and away fans area. Paul Lambert was quick to get the Aston Villa fans onside with deciding to switch his position in the dugout area to be nearer to the home teams beloved “Holte-End”.
This was an instant hit with the Villa fans which meaning he wanted to be nearer and part of one of them, an example of Aston Villa and Paul Lambert working together to bring a positive spin about the place. It is thought that Alex McLeish wanted to do the same as Lambert and switch dugouts last season but his request was turned down.
Aston Villa has struck a new kit manufacturing deal with Italian company Macron, the deal is thought to be a 4-year deal and thought to be worth £15million to Aston Villa. Macron is a company that has many European football teams on their books.
Transfer speculation has been rife of late with Lambert being linked with players he has worked with at Norwich such as Grant Holt, John Ruddy and Ryan Bennett. Paul Lambert has spent two weeks at the club and I’m sure he has been trying to settle into his new office at BMH.
It is really hard for Lambert to be able to orchestrate any deals at this time as the players are all on annual leave and aren’t set to return to training for a few more weeks. One player that has been linked with Aston Villa, who also spent last season at Carrow Road on loan from Tottenham, is Kyle Naughton.
Speculation has gathered that Aston Villa are keen land Manchester City’s forgotten England prospect Adam Johnson. Aston Villa chances of landing Johnson are slim with a large transfer fee but his wages could be a stumbling block and he has potential of attracting attention from other Premier League sides.
It is suggested that Paul Lambert has already made his feelings known to a few players that they don’t feature in his plans at the club such as James Collins and Alan Hutton. Aston Villa have already released Emile Heskey, Brad Guzan and Carlos Cuellar.
Media reports are suggesting that Stephen Ireland is set to hold talks with new manager Paul Lambert following paper talk that he would be used to generate funds with a deal away from Villa Park . Stephen Ireland has had an uneasy time since joining Aston Villa after being frozen out of the club by Gerard Houiller but Ireland showed glimpses of his Manchester City days last season – where he became “Fans Player of the Year”.
Stephen Ireland is also believed to be one of Aston Villa’s high earners with a weekly wage of £70,000, it is thought that Ireland has settled down from his party boy days and antics and is more of a family man. Ireland was voted Aston Villa’s “Supporters Player of the Year” at the end of season awards dinner, during last season Stephen Ireland also won player of the month. Ireland’s best performances came during Villa’s trips to the capital against Fulham in the season’s opener. He scored his first goal for the club in the New Years Eve fixture at Stamford Bridge, this was arguably his best performance in the colours of the mighty claret and blue.
Aston Villa already have a raided Australia for yet another promising player in the form of Brett Holman back in January he pledged to join Aston Villa from Dutch side AZ Alkmaar when his contract finished. Aston Villa will welcome back French midfielder Jean Makoun who has been on loan at Greek side Olympiakos, Makoun helped himself to a Championship medal during his season-long loan and featured in Olympiakos European fixtures.
Aston Villa first game of 2012/2013 season starts away at West Ham United and this could be the last time Villa visit Upton Park before they potentially move to the Olympic Stadium. Lambert’s first home game is Everton. Aston Villa have a good run-up of winnable games until October when the fixtures become tougher until after the new year with top four opposition. Aston Villa round off the 2012/2013 season with a trip to Norwich on the 4th May 2013, a fixture that will have added bite with the managerial changes. Aston Villa then play host to Chelsea in the final home game of the season before the final game of the season away at Wigan Athletic.
Aston Villa will be looking to have a good cup run this season following their FA CUP 5th Round exit at the hands of Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium last season. Villa also hope to improve in the League Cup after their third round exit at the hands of Bolton Wanderer’s last season.
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