Newcastle cult hero Mick Quinn believes that Aston Villa are capable of dropping right through the divisions if they don’t now sort their club out.
Quinny cites his former clubs Coventry and Portsmouth as examples of how initial relegation from the Premier League can spiral into something far far worse.
Owner Tony Xia said on Tuesday that Aston Villa will unveil their new manager today.
It is a badly kept secret as all of the media are reporting that it will be mackem reject and supposed Newcastle fan, Steve Bruce, who will become their fourth manager in a year.
Villa fans have seen Sherwood, Garde and di Matteo all manage and leave in these past 12 months and a classic characteristic of many clubs who plunge through the divisions, is an ever desperate search for the right man.
If Steve Bruce is indeed the new messiah for Aston Villa fans, then you can assume he will have only taken the job with significant funds to spend.
With the strict FFP (Financial Fair Play) rules now in place, this is an added danger for any ‘big’ club who falls on hard times, as even if you have an owner like Tony Xia who is prepared to keep on funding transfers, it can only last so long.
If Villa don’t quickly sort it out and compete for promotion, then in the not so distant future they could find themselves not even allowed to try and buy their way out of trouble. As clubs such as Fulham found out, incoming transfers were abruptly brought to a halt when a transfer embargo was placed on the Cottagers due to spending beyond what was allowed.
With Aston Villa only two points above the relegation zone you feel this season could go either way for them, either a relative bounce back or plunged into even worse (better!) chaos if Steve Bruce doesn’t work out.
Mick Quinn looks for the silver lining and says that if Steve Bruce is a success, then hopefully he might help Villa take some points off Newcastle’s promotion rivals…
Mick Quinn talking to The Chronicle:
“I have seen two of my old clubs fall from grace in the way Villa could if they don’t get things right and it’s a horrible, horrible sight.
“Their former manager Roberto Di Matteo said the whole club had a losing mentality. Who wants to join a club like that?
“You can only get rid of that if you’re winning games. Di Matteo couldn’t do that and it cost him his job.
“I know from two of my old sides, Coventry and Portsmouth, what happens if you can’t snap out of that pretty quickly.
“They were poorly managed and fell through division after division – in Pompey’s case all the way to the bottom.
“Once teams like that fall from grace it’s hard to get out of it.
“It was massive for Newcastle to keep hold of Rafa, whereas Villa are about to get their fourth new manager since they sacked Tim Sherwood just under a year ago.
“Hopefully it (employing Steve Bruce) can work to Newcastle’s favour because they’ve already been to Villa Park, and maybe under Steve Bruce. Villa will be able to take points off some of their promotion rivals.’
“As a Newcastle United fan, I’ve got mixed feelings about the idea of Steve Bruce managing Aston Villa .
“Brucie is tried and tested when it comes to getting teams out of the Championship.
“He can sort that club out in the same way Rafa Benitez has with Newcastle.”