Not the 39th game, if there is any truth in the Vlaar story, something on Liverpool and Delph and finally Senderos

On days like today I like to pretend that there hasn't been an international break and we just beat a side that nobody thought we would beat. Then it's only six more days until the next match. Is it just me or do these international breaks seem to come around a lot more often these days?

And seeing there hasn't been much in the way of Aston Villa happening this week and I've just checked the club website to confirm that, I guess this post is about other stuff that is in someway linked to our great club.


And it wouldn't be right and proper, on that basis, if I didn't start on the story this week that there are plans for one game to be played overseas every season. Or what it actually boils down to is three home games over six years overseas.

Not the 39th game

Now, it's clearly a better idea than the 39th game that was proposed a while ago, but it still doesn't make it right and the entire concept just seems to be about money and you know what, I appreciate that in this day and age, it's about money, but isn't this just a game. Can't the rules of the game be changed so maybe we can change the direction the game is heading?

What happens if our home game is against Everton, but we're playing it in Norway. At Villa Park, with out home support, we would stand a good chance. Playing in Oslo, with maybe 3,000 Aston Villa supporters, our chances of winning wouldn't be the same. How can that be fair?

Football is about one home game and one away game a season. For the home team, the advantage is that they play at home. The away side and Aston Villa is a great example of this, possibly the best in the league, they have supporters who travel to away games to ... do I really need to go further? It's supporters travelling. It's in the sentence and if a game is played overseas you're not going to get the same support.

In the spirit of football it's wrong. In the spirit of capitalism and milking the game for everything you can get, it's a good move. But that is why the game is broken and where the authorities need to spend time fixing it.

In my humble opinion, if the game isn't fixed, it's going to look very different in twenty years time and I'm not sure that's going to be something I'm that interested in. The kids these days are already not really interested and with all the data and the insights the clubs have, I'm sure they know this too.

It's not like it used to be when I was a kid and I can understand why the kids don't care that much for it these days.

Click here to answer a very quick question on the proposed overseas game. Actually, it's two questions, because we sort of need to confirm you're an Aston Villa fan too.

News or speculation

Fabulous Delph

First up is the story that Senderos could be out for a while. He came off with twenty minutes to go while on international duty and talk is he could be out for a few weeks. Now, this isn't great news, but there is also talk that Vlaar is back and with Baker playing so well recently, it might not be a major loss.

And Vlaar will want to be back and playing because talk today is that Manchester United are going to be making moves in January. This isn't new news or speculation, from as soon as Louis van Gaal took over, there were stories about Vlaar going and as soon as the World Cup ended and Vlaar came out as the best centre back of the World Cup, those intensified.

Vlaar is out of contract at the end of this season and he'll get over £100,000 a week and a likely four year deal if he signs for Manchester United. That's over £20,000,000 for his last big contract and if Manchester United really are interested, I don't think anyone can blame him for going. My point is, if there is any truth to this, expect Vlaar to go, because we all would.

But there is more speculation today and it focuses on Liverpool showing interest in Fabian Delph and in this case, I think we could be hugely disappointed if Delph went. He's still young, he's loved at Villa Park and playing on a regular basis and you'd like to hope that he felt some loyalty.

Vlaar had earned relatively little until he moved to the Premier League, but Delph has earned and will likely be offered a deal in the region of £15,000,000 for the next four seasons and at 24 years old, he still has that last big pay day or two to come.

But, cash is king and sure, there are other elements, but that is going to be a thing for a player like Delph, who has just broken into the England side.

And I did hear a rumour in the summer that Delph thought he was off all for it to be called off after he returned for pre-season. If that is true, maybe his heart isn't at Aston Villa and if that's the case maybe it's best we cash in if we can, but he will be missed.

But the Vlaar and Delph stories are just speculation and we're going to have to wait to see what happens, but it will be good news if they agreed to new deals before the transfer window opened. But as I wrote above, if there is any truth in the Vlaar story, expect him to go.

And after all that, it's done

So, with all that written, I'm going to go do what I should be doing on a Sunday and all the things that have been piling up every other weekend while the football has been on. But it would be interesting to know your thoughts on this game getting played overseas.

Me, I can see why it's a good idea when think about the money, but I'd rather the game was made honest and fair for all teams and supporters, but I can't see that happening. I mean, if a cow is going to produce milk and you're in the business of milking, why stop?