Former Liverpool boss Gérard Houllier is reportedly the man earmarked to take over at Aston Villa. The commanding Frenchmen has been out of work since 2007 after leaving Lyon but rumours have it that he is currently considering an offer from Randy Lerner to return to work with the Midlands side. But would Houllier be the right man to step in for Martin O’Neill?
To be frank the answer is no. The right man for Aston Villa was Martin O’Neill. It is an unfortunate saga for football that has seen one of the most charismatic but gifted managers leave the game. Whoever replaces O’Neill will have an almost impossible task.
But Houllier is somebody with vast experience and may be able to slowly make Villa fans forget about O’Neill era. Villa need a manager who can build a new dynasty and maybe somebody who can do something different to O’Neill.
Houllier is the sort of manager who will build a side that focuses on results rather than flair and this will be a big change for Villa fans that will have been used to different things under O’Neill.
But what Houllier can do is get the results. Liverpool fans will look back fondly to the days of success in cup competitions that the Frenchman had at Anfield. In one off games Houllier was very successful at picking up positive results.
However in the league results were not so succesful and Houllier eventually lost his job due to his inability to secure Champions League football. This would be the making of any spell at Villa should he take over and going on history Houllier may suffer for his lack of ability to make his side grind out results.
But the main reason why I can’t see Houllier being a success at Villa Park is Houllier’s transfer policy. Looking on his past at Liverpool this is where he drastically underperformed signing a huge amount of average players. O’Neill reportedly left because a lack of money for transfers meaning that Houllier would have to be immaculate with his budget and how he spent it.
I think Villa will find it very hard on to replace a manager of O’Neill’s stature and I feel the only way they can have any long term to success his to take a short term appointment on to fill the gap and help make fans forget about O’Neill. Because whoever replaces him is unfortunately destined to fail.