Supporters and shareholders of Aston Villa have joined together to fight what they see as the “endless cycle of under-achievement” their club has suffered for the past 20 years.

PRESS RELEASE: May 20th 2003IMMEDIATE

Villa Fans Combined are delighted to announce that a protest meeting has been arranged for 24th May 03, between 2-4 pm at Aston Villa Leisure Centre, 8 Aston Hall Road, Aston, B6 7LB (just below Aston Parish Church). The fans have asked for a way to express their views and feel a part of VFC and we have acted on their requests.

VFC can confirm that Carl Chinn has kindly agreed to compere the meeting and has said "Aston Villa belongs to its fans. If the fans want change they must act and do so for the good of the club that we all love so dearly"

VFC are also very excited to announce that Dennis Mortimer has agreed to attend the meeting and to be a guest speaker, showing once again, that the Villa community is united in its quest to replace the current board. We would like to make it clear that this is not a personal witch hunt against Mr Ellis or any other individuals. We wish Mr Ellis no ill, but the message to the board is a clear one, Club For Sale, Time For Change.

VFC have also had a message of support from Brian Travers of UB40. He said "As a musician who has spent the last 23 years touring the World I have always been extremely proud of Aston Villa's International reputation. The respect given to the team from all corners of the globe never fails to make me feel very homesick. As Birmingham makes its bid for the title of European capital of culture in 2008 one of our greatest ambassadors, Aston Villa, is not receiving the attention or the accolades we all feel they are entitled to. The league cup victory in 1996 is a very distant memory. That's why I fully support the VFC initiative currently being employed and with the commission of a report into the business workings of Aston Villa PLC by Howard Hodgson, it looks like we may finally see the changes that are desperately needed to put our team back where they belong, at the top of the Premiership, playing in Europe and prominent on the world stage of football"

VFC have been working tirelessly approaching businessmen and advisors and momentum is building, especially with the backing of such well respected figures as Carl Chinn, Brian Travers and of course our most illustrious former Captain Dennis Mortimer.

Jonathan Fear, a spokesperson for VFC says "every single Villa fan is an integral part of this club, the apathy has got to stop and the fans have got the perfect opportunity to back the campaign to remove the current board and very clearly demonstrate their feelings. It is our aim to bring about radical change, to press for a new board made up of business people who have flair and vision and who care for Aston Villa, and to press for a representative of the fans on any new board."

VFC have made contingency plans, in full consultation with the police, in order to enable us to move the meeting if fan numbers exceed expectations.


Contacts:
Jonathan Fear
Navid Nazir
info@villafc.com

Notes:

Directions to Aston Villa Leisure Centre
From M6 - Follow signs to Villa Park - along Lichfield Road, 2nd set of lights turn right - follow road round - under bridge take left fork - it is about 200 yds along Aston Hall Road opposite the Vauxhall Dealership Garage.

VFC (Villa Fans Combined)
VFC is an umbrella group that includes independent websites such as Holteenders.com (Mike Field), VillaTalk.com (Peter Bosworth and John Cresswell), astonished etc, Navid Nazir of Avisa, The Aston Villa Shareholders Association, Jonathan Fear and a long list of supporters from all sections of the Villa community.

Howard Hodgson
Bought family funeral business 1975 for £14k. Grew business from 1 branch to 546 by 1990. Floated USM 1986. Market cap £7.5m. Voted Entrepreneur of the Year 1987. Full Market quote 1988. Market cap now £125m. Merged with Kenyon Sec (part of Lyonnaise des Eau, France) 1989. Sold out 1991. Appointed CEO Ronson plc 1993. Appointed CEO Colibri International Corp 1998. Retired 2000 in order to concentrate on writing and broadcasting.

ENDS

Contact info@villafc.com

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Previous Press Releases:
18th May 2003: Potential investors identifed - Report commissioned.
14th May 2003: GT Resigns. The Board Must Go Now.
12th May 2003: Another wasted season, another opportunity missed.
4th May 2003: VFC Update - The right moment?
10th April 2003: Treffick Shareholding, Uncertainty and the Fear.
4th April 2003: Club for Sale - Time For Change.

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