Poor Aston Villa. After assembling a half decent squad with some top youngsters ready to make their way through, they only go and employ the hapless manager who relegated their biggest rivals, plays dull football and dragged them down the table.
Damian Dugdale, from The Villa Blog, has looked ahead to the coming season.
Scott the Red: What would have to happen this season for you to class this as a successful one?
Damian Dugdale: A successful season would be silverware. Finishing higher than last season or in the top half will be seen by some as success, but for me you count success with silverware. I’m that desperate, I’d even take the League Cup.
STR: How do you feel about your club’s business in the transfer window this summer?
DD: It feels like the owner is getting ready to sell. He seems more interested in getting his house in order and seems unwilling to push the boat out. The players in however were picked by the new manager and they look dependable. Dependable is good and we do have some quality at the club – will be interesting to see what happens.
STR: What did you make of Ashley Young and Stewart Downing’s first season away from the club?
DD: Webcam (as I like to call Ashley Young) did as expected and it was unlucky he just seemed to be injured so much. He took some flack for diving, but that is part of his game but I think Sir Alex will get that out of him. I think most Villa fans would have him back tomorrow. As for Downing – well, what can you say about an attacking player that doesn’t score or create one goal all season; red mug.
STR: If you could pick one United player to have in your squad who would it be?
DD: A 19-year-old Ryan Giggs or maybe even Paul Scholes. But from your current squad; Vidic.
STR: Who do you think will be your most important player this season?
DD: I want to say Darren Bent. If the manager can play to his strengths he will score goals. It all comes down to creating opportunities for him.
STR: How do you rate your manager’s ability to take your club forward?
DD: Not sure yet. You often see a manager do well in his first season in the Premier League only to not do so well the second time of asking. This season isn’t really a test for him – he has a solid group of players that will want to play for him and he has the fans support, but taking the club forward is a big task and only time will tell.
STR: Who do you think will win the league this season?
DD: You lot. Or I hope anyway. I really don’t like the way Manchester City have done it.
STR: Cheers mate.
The Republik of Mancunia has brought out a brilliant downloadable World Cup preview. It contains 20 articles written by football experts on the countries our players will be representing in Brazil. There is also exclusive content from this country's top football journalists, such as Sid Lowe, Martin Lipton, Sam Wallace and Dominic Fifield. All profit is going to charity. More info on the RoM World Cup preview can be found here.
Minimum price is £4. Enter your e-mail address to receive the download and the price you would like to pay.