That’s it then.
The inevitable has happened and we find ourselves in search of a new manager.
From what I’ve read, compensation was agreed at around the £1,000,000 figure and if that’s true I think we got off lightly even though I’ve thought for weeks that Garde wasn’t the right man for us.
So where did it go wrong?
Well, I keep reading that Remi Garde is a really nice man and that says a lot to me. A nice bloke and a bunch of petulant players as we have at the club were never going to be a good mix and it seems at least some of them just didn’t respect the manager. Garde’s failure to bring his favoured right hand man in was probably instrumental in his not being able to keep control and Richards calling a fan a “clown” via social media is just a typical example. Things like that just don’t happen under tough managers and if they do, they get stamped on hard.
Will Richards be fined for slating a fan? I doubt it.
Fundamentally, what went wrong was that Garde couldn’t get the players to perform for him and the result was a 10% or whatever win ratio. And it’s as simple as that.
He had to go.
So now what?
Eric Black will take over and I find myself dismayed.
Ok, he’s the number two and logical next in line until we sort something more permanent out.
But I worry about his appointment, as under Garde there must have been one of two situations, in my opinion.
Either he agreed with the way Garde was trying to do things and supported him. If that’s the case, what’s going to change?
Or he didn’t agree and just went along with things. Which doesn’t make him a very good number two in my eyes, as he should be advising/assisting the manager and telling him if he’s being too soft. Either way, this is probably the better situation of the two, as perhaps he’s a bit more of a disciplinarian. I doubt that’s the case though, as if it was, I’d have expected him to take over the training.
I suppose we have to have someone though although I’d have liked it to be Brian Little, as with his experience, he’d have soon sussed this lot out.
Hence my opinion says we have to get the next manager in as quickly as possible, so he can take a look at the rag-tag bunch we call a squad and instantly weed out the worst offenders, with the aim of getting rid at whatever cost.
Make no mistake, I believe that this is the single biggest priority of all. It even comes before how good I think a footballing manager he is.
Because trying to achieve anything will prove pointless if you have trouble-makers.
Even the great Brian Clough couldn’t do it at Leeds Utd because of some of the “personalities” there and while I’m not comparing Garde and Clough, I’m sure you know what I mean.
I said “at whatever cost”. And I mean it.
Pay them off, give them away, put them on gardening leave if we have too.
I don’t care. Just get rid of them, as they’ll drag the kids down with them if we don’t and we can kiss any hopes of promotion goodbye.
Alienate them and show the kids that unprofessional behaviour, whether on or off the pitch just cannot and will not be tolerated at the mighty Aston Villa.
Which all in all, means I’m leaning to Nigel Pearson.
Note I said “leaning”. I’m not convinced, by any means.
Although I do think he’s the sort of strong personality we need and he has been through the promotion mill. I can’t see his favoured backroom team leaving Leicester to join him though, which might make him a “doubtful”, if I’m being realistic.
I think Moyes is the fans’ favourite, but I’m not sure he will have the appetite for the challenge that any prospective manager faces.
That said, this is exactly what we’ve got the new board in for, isn’t it?
But they have a tough task in choosing a new manager. He’ll need to be given a lot of control and he’ll also need money, because if we weed out say half a dozen of the worst perpetrators, they’ll need replacing with decent quality and not kids from the squad.
And that’s where I worry even more.
Will Lerner be willing to fund the “root and branch” change that is needed for the club to genuinely move on?
I seriously have my doubts.
Still, if the board are as good as they’re being made out, they’ll convince Lerner that we have to go down this road won’t they?
And hopefully they’ll have been on the case for weeks and are close to making an appointment.
Or do we think our main target is currently employed and obliged to see the season out?
Questions, questions and as been said, this is a massive appointment; the one that could either save us or see us in a tailspin.
I can’t really leave this post without a poll can I?
And it has to be a nice sunny theme, as I’m sick of this rubbish weather.