Incoming Aston Villa CEO Adds Pragmatic Voice to Xia’s Dreams

“I hope that under the ambition and guidance of the Chairman the fans will see progress with deeds and not just words.” – Keith Wyness

Villa Dreams

“My long-term aim is to make Aston Villa the greatest Club in the world,” said Tony Xia, as he made his first appearance in front of the media as Aston Villa owner. Never mind talking about vague bright futures, the new Villa owner was really going for it and even mentioned winning another European Cup.

Ambition is good, but empty hype achieves very little. After all, most dreams tend to be lies. Although saying that, Villa should aim high and getting this club qualifying for Europe again is the kind of ball park we should be pitching up at again. In my time as a Villa supporter, European nights have been a big part of the experience and fabric of the club. The woeful last five seasons, should not distract us from that.

I have little time for fans who now limit Villa’s ambition to being a well-run club who simply survive in the Premier League. This is sport, and sport is about achievement, aspirations and winning. Just ask Leicester City who last season showed Spurs how to fulfil their motto of ‘to dare is to do’.

While Xia continued his wayward optimism, Di Matteo said nothing that hadn’t been said before in the first press conferences of all the new managers Villa supporters have seen come and go in recent years. We will soon receive the first clues about Di Matteo by how his summer recruitment goes.

Wyness Reality

The most pragmatic voice of the initial press rounds of Villa’s new dawn was the incoming CEO Keith Wyness, who hinted that progress of Villa’s new dawn should be measured in actual achievements.

“I hope that under the ambition and guidance of the Chairman the fans will see progress with deeds and not just words,’ reflected Wyness, adding the current focus was on what happens on the pitch.

“The squad is the most important thing and Roberto is working on that. He’s extended the training camp in Austria from four days to seven days to look at the players we have right now.”

It seems any player cull will come swiftly after that.

“He [Di Matteo] will be making decisions pretty quickly. The squad is very key,” said Wyness.

“Off the pitch I will try to get some things in place pretty quickly. We want to get the club moving forward. Obviously I recognise from my experience that there are some issues to be addressed at Villa behind the scenes. Hopefully I can bring the leadership to try and do that.

Consulting supporters groups is on the cards too, although, we’ll have to wait a few weeks for the club to get into its stride.

“I will fully engage at the appropriate time with the supporter groups which is a key strength of this great Club,” concluded Wyness.


Follow MOMS on Twitter at @oldmansaid


  1. ‘ Incredible transitional work done by Steve Hollis who will always have the utmost respect of all the Villa Fans’ – keep seeing this and still don’t understand it. Hollis was Lerner’s KPMG man – hired to cut costs and sell the club. He it was who denied Garde the money promised to change the squad in January.

    Villa had four managers through last season and all of them failed to get the squad working. Four different managers! January was the time to make changes – that opportunity was denied Villa by Lerner and Hollis. Compare that with what happened at Sunderland.

    The fans crowing about Hollis seem to see Lerner as a demon. He was not. He was a fool. A fool who spunked hundreds of millions of his own money on his pet Villa project and only succeeded in creating a team fit for the Championship. They talk as if Hollis ‘got rid’ of Lerner. It is diotic.

    Hollis has done what he was paid by Lerner to do and found a buyer. He will be walking off with a handsome payoff while we, the fans, now enter a new period of the unknown. Lerner may have been a fool, but he was not an asset stripping thief. Only time will tell what Villa’s latest bright new future holds.

  2. The training pitch is always difficult last season we could see that some players could convince the manager of a first team place because of the training commitment where the same application wasn’t aligned on match day performances. Not sure if that was manager or player not getting it right. Still one thing for sure it looks like Matty will take no prisoners, i hope for the reconnection and trust of the supporters that the villains of the dressing room (excuse the pun) are listed for sale and that Paddy Riley departs soon as he has over stayed his welcome by a long long shot (one wonders what is happening there behind the scenes , what hold does have with the current new staff ??) It is perplexing as to his current role ?. Once all those that were the ingredients to the damage caused last season have gone. Then we truly have wiped the slate clean and the new structures can grow into an exciting new season where we can perhaps start to genuinely get our club back. Incredible transitional work done by Steve Hollis who will always have the utmost respect of all the Villa Fans – If all the new staff and especially the playing staff follow his ethos and work commitment then we are going to have a formidable few years ahead of us…Happy Days :O)) For the New Board and the New Management Team – A really warm welcome to The Villa …

    • Please do not speak for all. As this Villa fan doesn’t remember Steve Hollis so fondly. I believe he was appointed just before the Jan transfer window and we did not get any players in. We had a chance then to stay up, Remi had beaten the team into delivering a run of mediocre (as opposed to absolutely rubbish) performances, but when Remi wasn’t backed by the C Suite, the players soon returned to their losing ways. Hollis didn’t bring anything special to the sale, remember Lord King of Lothbury resigned as a director only two months (maybe less) after he was nominated because he thought there was nothing that could be done.

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