The football, Ron Vlaar and an important few days for Randy Lerner

I've enjoyed watching Ron Vlaar during the World Cup, but every time he's had a fantastic performance, it's only made me think, with everything we're led to believe, that he's most certainly off this summer.

It doesn't mean he is going to leave though. Randy Lerner could very well come to the fairly logical conclusion that the club is more valuable and attractive with the best centre back at the World Cup in it and offer him the £100,000 a week he'll be offered elsewhere.


Lerner could also be quite close to a sale and the new owners might very well want to have that same player at the club. I don't think he is close to a sale and after Paul Faulkner was sacked, or should I say forced to resign for those that still think he stepped down for something else, I don't believe he is close to a sale and that no new potential owners have stipulated that Ron Vlaar should stay.

Not just Vlaar

Fabulous Delph

It's also a relevant point for some other players too, notably Fabian Delph, who is also entering the last year of his contract. These two, if Aston Villa are to even look attractive to a potential new owner, let alone stand a good chance of progressing next season, have to stay.

But and this is where it becomes interesting, will Lerner offer them the type of money that they could get at a club with a little ambition or even a club on the brink or even in the top four? You see, I think there is a very good chance both could be playing for a side in the top four, but that's just me.

Blind optimism time

So this is where my blind optimism comes into play as I think Lerner will offer it. Clubs are valued by the squad, as well as supporter base, income and success on the pitch. We need to keep the best players and the biggest factor these days in keeping a player is cash.

I think the football can help too and Roy Keane coming in might be exactly what they need to see, especially when you think about Vlaar. You see, it's been hard for Vlaar and the likes of Baker and Clark and every other player that plays in defence for Aston Villa.

For the most part our game has focused on sitting back and playing a counter attacking style. It's meant that they've had more to do, than say a defensive back line for a side with a more attacking focus. With more to do ... you know where this is going.

But I do believe the football will change this season (more blind optimism I'm afraid) and with that I think we will look a more attractive proposition and who knows, it might even make Randy Lerner think differently about selling.

Really important few days

And there are reports that Lerner is in the UK and that he's spent time with Lambert and Keane. If these reports are true and he has even the slightest interest in football, he'll know he needs to offer the likes of Vlaar and Delph what he has to offer.

And with reports that several players are going to be allowed to leave this summer with those funds getting made available to the manager, there is hope that with the right management combination, supported by the club and owner, if we have a good start, things could start to look up.

But a good start is needed. Lambert has had two seasons and we need to see the football get better and quite quickly. I think it can, but some things do worry me.

Why bring in Senderos and if Lerner is only interested in money, if he has £20mn in the bank (or to come in instalments) that also makes the club a little more interesting to prospective new owners.

But then I try to look at the positives when possible and I do believe, if Joe Cole can stay fit, he's almost the perfect player to play behind the main striker and with Delph and Vlaar behind him, we've got a good spine; something we've not had since Lambert has been at the club.

But Vlaar and Delph need to sign and that sadly means Lerner is going to have to do something he has refused to do so far and that's pay a huge weekly salary (but he can also put in the option that they can leave next summer if a price is met). Like I wrote above, an important few days to come.