The manager merry go round in the premier league is well and truly in full swing as Aston Villa stand on the brink of appointing Norwich City’s Paul Lambert as the clubs new manager. Some twelve days since the sacking of Alec Mcleish, Lambert has been identified as the candidate which the Villa hierarchy believes fits the credentials necessary to move on from what has been a disastrous two years for Aston Villa.
Lambert began the week insisting that his future was at Norwich and dismissed reports of a move away from the club. Aston Villa had already held talks with Molde manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer without actually offering the former Manchester United striker the job. OGS later cited family reasons behind his decision to snub any advances from Aston Villa. That left Brendan Rodgers, Roberto Martinez and Paul Lambert in the running for the Villa post. Rodgers whom two weeks ago turned down the chance to speak with Liverpool over their vacant position, was a very popular candidate with villa fans due to his successful first season in the premier league with Swansea City and the attractive style of football which they play. However, Rodgers changed his mind and decided to hold talks with Liverpool’s owners who had already interviewed Wigan manager Martinez for the position. Martinez impressed Liverpool during there meeting but the Spaniard was uncomfortable with the proposal of appointing a director of football, believed to be Louis Van Gaal. This ultimately put Martinez out of the running and left Liverpool returning to their original target in Rodgers who will officially be unveiled as Liverpool manager at a press conference on Friday morning.
Martinez had been targeted by Villa twelve months ago prior to appointing McLeish but chose to stay at the Lactic’s. This time around Martinez was reported to be more attracted to the idea of taking the role and his representatives held talks with Villa. On the same night that Rodgers was confirmed as Liverpool boss, Martinez’s chairman Dave Whelan confirmed that his manager would be remaining in his role. All eyes turned to the future of Paul Lambert.
Reports overnight suggested that Aston Villa hoped to appoint their new man by the end of the week. The day began with Villa reportedly seeking permission to speak with Lambert from his club Norwich City. As the day progressed Norwich released a statement indicating that they had in fact turned down a resignation from Lambert and were currently in talks with another club (believed to be Aston Villa) over the Scotsman’s future. It would seem now that a compensation package is all that stands in the way of Lambert being confirmed as the new Aston Villa manager.
The appointment will prove to be a popular one amongst the claret and blue faithful with Lambert very much so falling under the category of the ”new manager who sees the club’s potential and embraces our collective expectations” that chairman Randy Lerner longs for. Lambert”s back to back promotions with the Canaries and solid first season back in the top flight have won many plaudits. With the appointment hoping to be confirmed by the weekend, Lambert will have a long summer ahead in which to reorganise the squad and begin his work at Villa Park