So it’s a short and sweet video, with no sound, but it’s just the sort of thing I like to see. Anyone who says “Up the Villa” is okay by me.
Tony Xia is confirmed as our new owner then and is due for a press conference, along with Roberto Di Matteo this morning.
It was nice seeing pictures/video of him walking around the ground and while I’m not sure if it was his first time, he couldn’t have failed to have been impressed with what he saw.
While my dream as a kid would have been to play for the club, now it would be to actually own it.
The ground is a great sight when it’s empty, but imagine sitting watching an important game, in front of a full house, where we’re winning and the crowd are really rocking.
And then thinking “I own this”. How good would that be?
But it isn’t going to happen, so while I’m coming back to reality, I’m starting to think about what Mr Xia might be thinking.
We’ve seen the reports where Xia is going to hand over £30 million to RDM, but I’ve also seen opinions that we shouldn’t look to buy our way out of the Championship and should look to use our kids.
Ive talked about the latter point before and it’s a nice idea. But it won’t work.
We have to look at the competition we’re going to face this season and there are some serious clubs in this league.
Newcastle are going to spend, Derby have a decent starting point with a good manager in Pearson and I could cite lots of other examples, which don’t need explanation.
My concern is that if we try to play with an average championship league outlook, from a club point of view, there are much more experienced clubs than us that already know what it’s about.
So while it goes against my instincts, I have to confess that I want Mr Xia to go all out for promotion.
Which means we have to get rid of the rubbish, get in some proper quality and then, secondarily, bring in some experienced grafters and maybe introduce the kids if we’re doing well, come the winter.
Yes, I know. It means root and branch change, where we risk a bunch of players not knowing each other.
But we can’t keep most of the squad we have, as I believe it’s beyond saving, as a whole.
If that’s true, a couple of top-ups is going to achieve nothing, is my point.
Of course, this is going to cost serious money and while I wouldn’t profess to have clue about how contracts work in reality, I’d like to think that with massive incentive-based contracts, it won’t cost ridiculous amounts if we don’t get promotion at the first attempt.
For clarity, I’m talking about double your basic wage with a win bonus, type thing and halve it if you lose.
Wouldn’t that be a good incentive to any player who is confident in his ability?
Or perhaps I’m still dreaming.
The point is, I have concerns that if it takes too long to get promoted, Xia will quickly get bored with us.
Okay, I’ve read that he’s going to buy a house in the Midlands and base himself 50/50 in Birmingham and China.
How long will he be happy making that little commute?
I’d suggest not long, given that he has a young daughter.
Hence I think he has no option but to go all out to get us up straight away and will provide RDM with pretty much what he wants.
Which is the acid test I mentioned in the headline.
If he tries to do things on the cheap, by signing cheap, old hacks, lower league players and introducing the kids too quickly, I think I’ll come to a pretty quick conclusion as to what he’s all about.
But I seriously think he’s the real deal and that isn’t going to happen.
It’s going to be a real roller coaster couple of years, where I expect major highs and lows.