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 - 1st August 2003.You're only as good as your last result


VFC note with great alarm the poor results from Aston Villa PLC and the mixed messages coming out of Villa Park.

VFC say “The board have proved that they are not capable of running Aston Villa in the modern era of football. Each season they take our team further away from competing with the top teams, don’t have the popular mandate of either the fans or the shareholders, who have seen their initial investments fall by over 90%, yet in their arrogance remain in control of our club.”

The current results should be a source of great shame as they have managed to increase last years £400 000 loss to a pre tax loss of £11.6million. Turnover also fell from £46.7million to £45.4 million and operating losses before player sales was at £13.5million, up from £9.6million in 2002.

Mr Ellis in his own statement conceded that they are finding the task difficult*, we want to see people on the board that are able to turn this situation around and give Mr O’Leary the platform for success.

If we had posted those sorts of results, after finishing 16th last season on the pitch, we would be hanging our heads in shame, we wouldn’t be taking a bonus and would be making every effort to encourage offers from people who can take this club forward.

We have a board that doesn’t recognise the potential fan base and doesn’t match the ambitions of the shareholders, fans, players or managers who have all focussed on the positives of Aston Villa and the need to build, whilst the board continue to pull in the opposite direction*, the situation simply cannot be allowed to continue.

A full VFC statement will be made next week with reference to the actions we intend to take after comprehensive meetings are undertaken with our contacts, advisers and lawyers.


*Quotes

Quote from Mr Ellis: “The financial difficulties that I forecast in my previous reports regarding excessive playing costs has hit many clubs hard. Aston Villa continues to operate within its resources and this has made the challenge of competing regularly for honours, but remaining financially stable extremely difficult”.

Quote from Mr Ansell: “Nine players in the first-team squad come out of contract in July 2004, some of whom will not be replaced and some will be replaced with reduced amortisation and salary costs”

ENDS


Contacts:
Jonathan Fear
Navid Nazir
info@villafc.com

Notes:

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, The Aston Villa Shareholders Association, Jonathan Fear and a long list of supporters from all sections of the Villa community.

ENDS

Contact info@villafc.com

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Reaction from first meeting:
Paul's response: Remember the day - the 24th of May.
Previous Press Releases:
27th July 2003: Sell, Sell, Bye Bye - Is there a takeover in the wings?
11th July 2003: Football Fans Census - Villa Fans Survey
26th June 2003: Second Rally - The Hodgson Report
18th June 2003: Fans Testimonial for Ian Taylor and Alan Wright
6th June 2003: Second meeting announced.
20th May 2003: New Manager, same core problems.
20th May 2003: Rally 24th May - Update.
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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