Deal almost done for N'Zogbia and what Lerner will bring

This is basically a reverse of the post from yesterday as the club confirmed that Wigan had finally accepted an offer for N'Zogbia and we have the results from the poll, first asked two years ago.

But first to N'Zogbia - a natural left sided player and if reports are to be believed, for less than £10mn and half of what we got for Stewart Downing - you've got to prefer the deal we made.

It isn't that Downing wasn't our best player last season, but you've got to factor in that he was the best in our side, because we played to his strengths, but you would hope also, that we will still try to play that way and if we do, we'll make N'Zogbia a better player too.

But that all comes down to the manager. Will he play that way or are we going to see something else?

Poll results

So, to the question we asked yesterday and the results are not great. Basically we've gone from 42.2% of people thinking we'd be playing Champions League football under Randy Lerner two years ago, to 53.9% of people thinking we will get occasional European football and 38.7% thinking we've got not much more than mid-table football and the occasional cup run.

Something to remember about this question - it is about expectations, but it isn't asked to start an anti-Lerner campaign, more to point out that maybe, just maybe, change is needed at the club.

Now, I'm also not saying get rid of General PR - some like him and he is a fluffy positive creature and most know he is here to spin and generate positive PR, but when it comes to decisions, philosophy and moving the club forward - maybe change is needed. We appear to be standing still (some would argue going backwards) and despite the club making money on the sale of Downing and getting in a player, quite possibly his equal for half of it - chances are, as a club we are not moving forward from the ninth last season. You have to keep your best players.

So, we seem to be treading water. Hopes have gone backwards and now, only 3.4% of people think we have any chance of regular European football. Truth is, they are probably too optimistic and we do seem to have missed the boat and we went two seasons too long with Martin O'Neill and while that is easy to say now, some were saying it at the time.

But it is only a poll on a blog, but it is clear to this blogger that the club are missing a football man at the club and while we have a new manager and there is renewed optimism because the season is about to start - that will soon fade, unless he surprises the majority.

The poll results are in. Expectations are set. Unless there is a terrific start to the season I fear some will turn on the manager and unless the owner starts to make the right changes at the club, they'll start to turn on him too and when that happens, there will be nothing General PR can say, because actually, Aston Villa supporters are quite smart football fans and we've been managed by a sly old dog in the past and there is very little we haven't seen.