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Following the end of the 2009/2010 season the directors of Aston Villa decided that 2010/2011 was going to be a change in the way that the club was directed. Their main aim was to bring in youth and develop a team that will one day bring great profits to the club both on and off the field. This lead to the board forcing Marin O'Neill into resigning from the club to ensure that no players had any push over the staff and would ensure that the club would be starting a new.

The board hired a young, inexperienced, Australian Manager in the form of Bob Hope who came through as a big shock with many thinking that Gérard Houllier was the leading candidate for the job. When the signing was announced at Villa Park Hope announced that he had been watching Villa for a long time and announced that he had big plans for youth players Marc Albrighton, Barry Bannan, Gabby Agbonlahor, Nathan Delfouneso, Chris Herd, Shane Lowry and Ciaran Clark. These youth players, Debrincat indicated, will form a major part of the Villa line up for the 2010/2011 season. Hope also made clear that he will be willing to spend the money given to him by the board he will focus on mainly youth signings.




 
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Following the preseason matches Villa entered the Premier League full of confidence. Villa manager, Bob Hope, decided to offer captain Stillyan Petrov, John Carew, Richard Dunne, Habib Beye, Carlos Cueller, Luke Young, Emile Heskey, Isaiah Osbourne, Andy Marshall, Moustafa Salifou, Jonathon Hogg, Eric Lichaj, Andy Weimann, Nathan Baker, Arsenio Halfhuid and Benjamin Seigirst to rival clubs. John Carew was snapped by Liverpool, Habib Beye was signed by OM and Richard Dunne signed with Chelsea. Loan agreements were made with Stiliyan Petrov, Elliott Parker, Nathan Baker, Shane Lowry and Carlos Cueller. This allowed Debrincat to enter into the transfer market with 28 million pounds to spend.

Hope first moved in on snapping up Jo from Man City and setting up a loan with Man United for Federico Macheda to establish a formidable front attack for Aston Villa. The signings continued throughout the pre season with Gai Assulin (Free Agent), Stuart Taylor (Man City), Alex Billington (Blackburn Rovers), Jordan Spence (West Ham), Matthew Briggs (Fulham), Michael Potts (Blackburn), Scott Jamieson (Sydney FC), Courtney Husband (Man City) and James Tomkins (West Ham). These signings were nothing compared to the signing of Park Ji-Sung from Man United for 4.3 million. The other long term domestic loan spot went to Dedryck Boyata from Man City.

Results also went the way of Villa with impressive victories over Aston Villa Reserves (3-0 - Agbonlahor (2), A. Young), MVV (3-2 - Macheda (2), Ireland), BV Vendeem (1-0 - Reo Coker), SC Cambuur (2-0 - Albrighton, Park Ji-Sung), Volendam (1-0, Jo), St. Johnstone (1-0 - Ashley Young), Hamilton (4-0 - Park Ji-Sung, Warnock, Boyata, Assulin) and Fulham (2-1 - Agbonlahor, Ireland)

This was an impressive 3 weeks for Villa with 17 goals scored and only three against.

Villa manager Bob Hope made a shock announcement only 4 days before their opening Premier League Match against Chelsea with the signing of Ryan Shawcross from Stoke. Villa's already impressive defense grew stronger with the signing.

Final Squad Numbers before first League Match

1 Brad Friedel
2 Luke Young
3 Stephen Warnock
4 Steve Sidwell
5 James Tomkins
6 Stewart Downing
7 Ashley Young
8 Jo
9 Stephen Ireland
10 Federico Macheda
11 Gabby Agbonlahor
12 Marc Albrighton
13 Park Ji Sung
14 Nathan Delfouneso
15 Curtis Davies
16 Courtney Husband
17 Gai Assulin
18 Emile Heskey
19 Jordan Spence
20 Nigel Reo Coker
21 Ciaran Clark
22 Brad Guzan
23 Moustapha Salifou
24 Ryan Shawcross
25 Barry Bannan
26 Andy Weimann
27 Isaiah Osbourne
28 Matthew Briggs
29 James Collins
30 Stuart Taylor
31 Chris Herd
32 Alex Billington
33 Andy Marshall
35 Daniel Johnson
36 Michael Potts
37 Jonathon Hogg
38 Dedryck Boyata
40 Eric Lichaj
61 Fabian Delph

Stay tuned for more news on Aston Villa's start of the season.

 
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