Tag Archives: Gerard Houllier

Eric Lichaj needs to succeed at Leeds

Elland Road (picured) is one of England's most storied stadiums, and Lichaj will be able to get more first team playing time at Leeds United in the second half of the season rather than sitting out at Aston Villa. Leeds United is one of England's most stories clubs. (Courtesy Auz Flickr)

By Kevin Koczwara

Eric Lichaj found himself in a tough situation at Aston Villa this year. The 22-year-old American defender began making his way into the first team and establishing himself as a young defender to watch in the English Premier League early in the season.

Lichaj started fighting for a spot on the first team because of inconsistent play from Luke Young, Ciaran Clark, and Stephen Warnock. Then Gerard Houllier took the vacant position as the club’s long-term manager and replacement for Martin O’Neil. Houllier brought in Kyle Walker from Tottenham on loan to play right back for Villa, making Lichaj a surplus to requirements. The American has been given a way to get back on track, a chance to catapult his carrier back on the fast track, with a loan move to Leeds United for the second half of this season.

The move to Leeds for Lichaj could be a real boost for his young career, even if he isn’t getting playing time in the Premier League. The American is getting a chance to play for a club fighting back from some hard times in the Championship.

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Time is right for Michael Bradley move to Aston Villa

Michael Bradley's loan move from the Bundesliga in Germany to the English Premier League will help the player keep growing and it will be another challenge for the American midfielder.

By Kevin Koczwara

Michael Bradley made the best of his chances in Germany with Borussia Monchengladbach, but right now, as Gladbach sit in last place in the Bundesliga, and Michael Fink’s arrival at the club on loan, Bradley needs to get out. Aston Villa signed the American midfielder on loan for the rest of the season. It’s about time he moves on and test his American spirit in the English Premier League, a league tailored to his style. .

Bradley will find himself in a similar situation at Villa to the one he leaves behind in Gladbach. Aston Villa is fighting the relegation battle too, but it has better prospects than its German counterparts. Things look brighter these days at Villa Park.

Gerard Houllier has the team fighting again. He has removed a few of the cancers in the side that were sleep-walking through the season (looking at you Stephen Ireland). The one piece Houllier is missing, a hard-working and young holding midfielder who can break up an opponents attack and spring a counter-attack. He gets that missing piece with the arrival of Bradley.

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Bent move makes sense now and Arsenal setting up title challenge

Darren Bent's exspensive move to Aston Villa was highly criticized, but it proved to be the right move last weekend. Bent's goal sealed an important win for Villa over Manchester City. (Courtesy Bad English Flickr)

By Ryan Fleming

It makes you think that maybe, just maybe these managers know what they are doing. A week after acquiring £24 million man Darren Bent from Sunderland, Aston Villa not only played with Manchester City, but beat them thanks to Bent’s first-half strike, not to mention impeccable keeping from American international Brad Friedel.

Personally, I have a soft spot for Sunderland, so after seeing him go, and the way it all happened, I was rather disgusted to see that outcome, but it got me thinking.

Perhaps Gerard Houllier does know what he is doing and maybe Steve Bruce, despite losing his No. 1 scoring threat can still get things done. Aston Villa had to dig deep, but they picked up Bent to assure that the club would remain above the relegation zone. My initial thoughts were skeptical. How could one player ensure that a club doesn’t go off the deep end and begin next season in the Championship? At least for now, the ex-Liverpool manager is looking pretty smart.

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Omar Cummings deserves chance at Aston Villa on loan to prove himself

Aston Villa is in search of a dynamic player that can ease the pain off of Gerard Houllier's injury plagued squad for the second half of the season. Omar Cummings of the Colorado Rapids could be just the type of player Houllier is looking for. (Courtesy Ben Sutherland)

By Kevin Koczwara

Aston Villa fans haven’t had much to cheer for this season. Former boss Martin O’Neil resigned a few weeks before the season started. James Milner sold his soul to the devil, Manchester City, after being the team’s brightest spark last year. Injuries have rampaged through the squad and tested a young and inexperienced bench from the start. Now, Villa sits just two points from the drop zone and a desperate need to turn things around.

With a desperate need for goals, Villa boss Gerard Houllier may look to Major League Soccer for a short-term answer if transfer funds are tight this January. It is believed that Houllier is interested in signing a short-term loan deal for Colorado Rapids forward Omar Cummings if the two teams can agree on a deal. Houllier will look for Cummings to bring some pace into his slogging squad that has been hampered by injuries to players like Ashley Young.

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