Aston Villa Sale Stalls
Whatever the details of any planned takeovers of Aston Villa, according to Villa boss Tim Sherwood interview with Sky Sports, the club is set to remain in the ownership of Randy Lerner for the second summer since the Villa chairman’s statement declaring he was selling up and his heart wasn’t in it anymore.
Sherwood told Sky Sports: “I think it’s dead now, to be honest.”
While the Villa boss didn’t elaborate too much, it seems that the momentum to see a sale this summer has all but fizzled out.
“It was fairly live, but I think the people who were talking are now not there,” added Sherwood.
“The chairman is picking it up and running with it now. I’m not sure if anyone is too close now. Until it’s done it’s never there.”
So where does that leave Villa’s ambition?
Villa certainly need to revamp the squad and upgrade the quality of the first team to buck the recent trend of underachievement.
So far Sherwood has done well in clearing deadwood and no one will grumble about the signings of Micah Richards and Idrissa Gueye who will both improve Villa.
So far the net spend has only been around four to five million with Sinclair also coming in, while the club received fees for Weimann, Lowton and Sylla.
Vlaar, Given and Bent’s wages being off the book also gives Sherwood added freedom. With Richards’ wages allegedly around the £60,000-a-week mark and improved terms for Benteke and Delph, Lerner seems open to spending on the right player (after being burnt before).
After keeping Delph, from his recent interview, Sherwood also seems confident that he will retain the services of Christian Benteke for the new season. While Sherwood potentially couldn’t replace Benteke in quality and impact, if he was sold, it would allow a greater scope for improving the squad as a whole with perhaps two or three players being brought in if the money was freed up for transfers.
Most Villans would like to see what Benteke could do in a stronger Villa team, so to take advantage of potentially keeping Benteke, Sherwood needs to be allowed to bring in some proper reinforcements for the season ahead.
While Lerner’s intentions to still sell will mean he won’t be too keen to suddenly splash the cash, the realisation that the club won’t suddenly be any more attractive to buyers if he continues to pussy foot around, may encourage him to open the purse strings a little, especially in view of the huge increase in TV revenue to come in a year’s time.
Certainly Sherwood’s drive and enthusiasm may also rub off on him. The Villa boss isn’t interested in just surviving like previous seasons and insists relegation battles will be a thing of the past.
He said in March: “We aren’t going to be in it next year. Never. Because I will have the opportunity to build something and I won’t let that happen again.”
The Delph scare aside, the expectation of an explosive summer for Villa is beginning to fade. If Benteke does stay, we may all have to be content with a steady and cautious rebuilding job by Sherwood, as opposed to the brash overhaul we were expecting.
Regardless of how it happens though, as long as Sherwood delivers on his promise, progress will finally be made.
Follow MOMS on Twitter –oldmansaid