The sudden willingness of Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner to drop the selling price of Aston Villa due to relegation certainly has changed the landscape in terms of who will be the next Villa boss.
Originally, it was felt that Lerner would first try to get the club promoted back into the Premier League before selling the club. Getting chairman Steve Hollis in to prune the club’s structure and also to create a football board with David Bernstein and Mervyn King, looked like Villa’s focus was getting their house in order first.
Nigel Pearson was the obvious front runner. A manager who had won the Championship before, who had team spirit at the core of his football teams and would sort out the fools in the Villa dressing room. David Moyes was also favoured amongst some board members.
The sudden willingness of Lerner to slash the asking price for the club has thrown everything off kilter. Both Bernstein & King resigned and plans to bring in a new manager were put on ice, because obviously any new owner will want a say in who would come in.
Currently Hull City manager has replaced Pearson as the bookies favourite, with Paddy Power having him at evens for the job.
Previous press talk about Steve Bruce is largely believed to have been rubbish. For starters, he’s currently the boss of Hull City, who are destined for the Championship play-offs. He’d require a compensation payment; would a new owner want to waste money right off the bat? Then there’s the fact he doesn’t seem to keep his teams in the Premier League, once he’s got them there. His blue nose credentials also don’t work in his favour either.
For me, appointing Bruce would shrink Villa’s outlook as a club and have us swimming up-stream before a ball is kicked next season. If results don’t go well from the off, the supporters will turn against him swiftly and he’ll lose the dressing room’s respect as a result. I look at Bruce and think ‘journey man’ in terms of management.
While there’s no guarantees with Pearson, I’d take him over Bruce. Straight away you’d feel that Villa were on a mission and he’d sort the squad out and have them pushing in the right direction.
Lets hope that the bookies installing Bruce as favourite is nothing more than a red herring.