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Villa Noise: Vlaarmageddon Ron, Lichaj tache update and Super Stan
Interesting stories from Villa Park.
23rd Nov 2012
Villa Noise: Vlaarmageddon Ron, Lichaj tache update and Super Stan


Paul Lambert
has received an application for the role of assistant manager - from the pint-sized pundit.

Acorns kid Moin Younis is always a bundle of fun at Bodymoor Heath despite suffering from a life-limiting condition called Epidermolysis Bullosa - a very rare genetic condition in which blisters form both internally and externally on his body from the slightest knock or rub, causing painful, open wounds.

The cheeky chappy joined Jack Woodward for commentary of the Villa v Swansea clash and excelled in his role on the microphone, with congratulation messages coming from all over the world.

Good mates with Gabby Agbonlahor, Moin was invited to the training ground on Friday to meet up with the squad as a treat.

And he wasted little time in getting in the ear of boss Lambert.

He said: "I told the manager that I ideally wanted to be a footballer when I was older but that I wouldn't be able to so I would like to be his assistant manager instead.

"It was great meeting him. He's a good man and a top manager!

"I'll wait for an answer on my application in the post!"

Here's some pix of Moin with Marc Albrighton and Jack Woodward.

Moin

 

Moin


Lichaj

As you can see Eric Lichaj's tache is coming on a treat with only a few days left of Movember.

Lichaj has been growing his handlebar effort for the past three weeks and it's really come on sensationally in that time.

Usually such outlandish behaviour would receive stick in the dressing room.

But since he's doing it for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, the lads have gone easy on him.

Brad Guzan said: "He's doing it for a good cause so we'll let it all slide for the month. We'll let him off.

"I'm just looking forward to December when he hopefully shaves it off!"

Barry Bannan says Lichaj wouldn't care one jot even if he had received stick from the players.

He added: "He's not messing about with it - it's a proper handlebar!!

"Other players would be a little worried about the reaction in the dressing room but not Eric. He's not the kind of guy who cares what others think. So fair play to him.

"More importantly, it's for a good cause."


Good to interview Hollywood star Bob Stephenson this week about his affection for Villa.

Sometimes it can be a real chore to get in touch with famous faces but the arrival of Twitter has made it much easier.

A simple DM - Direct Message - to the Seven, Fight Club and Con Air actor and I'd received his email address, sent the request and got a response in double-quick time.

Remarkably for someone who's just in the throes of a new movie with Jason Bateman, a new TV show with Dennis Quaid and just switched management companies, he couldn't have been accommodating.

And more importantly he was absolutely thrilled to contribute to the club website, telling me: "It really is an honour to appear. Thanks for giving me the chance!" Superb!


On the subject of Bob Stephenson, it was interesting to find out from him which Villa player he thought would make the best actor.

I thought it would be a toss-up between Ron Vlaar and Christian Benteke - and Bob opted for the skipper.

He did make me laugh when he said: "Ron Vlaar is clearly Jason Statham's heavy. Him and Vinnie Jones?! What a combo! Hearing Ron's accent just before he snaps a guy's neck...that's a movie I want to see!"

Now, AVTV followed this up with Ron as they tried to find out if it's a career path he'd be interested in.

Smiling, he told Jack Woodward that he'd never thought of it and wouldn't be in the near future because he's focusing on his football.

But surely when he's hung up his boots there'd be room for a film called 'Concrete Ron.'


Petrov

It was an interview we didn't expect to get but we were delighted when we did.

Stan Petrov's tribute game took place on Sunday as the claret and blue football world came together for the skipper who's been recuperating following an eight-month battle with leukaemia.

We knew Gareth Barry and Ashley Young were due to attend the event at Halesowen Town but we didn't know whether Stan would be given the all-clear from his professor to come along.

Thankfully he did and it was great to catch up with him.

It was superb for AVTV to get five minutes with the club captain on camera, not for the exclusivity of the interview, you see, but just so Villa fans can see how he's getting on and what he's got to say.

I thought Jack Woodward did a fine job and it was heart-warming to see the AVTV presenter put Stan in his place!

Stan started talking about how much he'd enjoyed being part of the claret and blue club - speaking in the past tense - but Jack soon put him right, telling him: "You're still part of it now Stan!"

It was both emotional and belligerent from Jack but he got the tone spot on.

Stan smiled before saying that not being able to get down the training ground as much as he'd want sometimes made him feel isolated from everything.

I'm sure I speak for everyone when I say that he'll never be isolated from our thoughts.


As last Sunday's charity game at Halesowen Town proved, the level of support for Petrov has been overwhelming.

Supporters, players and staff have gone to phenomenal lengths to show their backing for Stan.

Villa fan Mike Symmonds has been inspired by the Bulgarian midfielder's battle and has set himself a remarkable challenge to raise money for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research.

Marathon man Mike is preparing to run from the Emirates Stadium - the scene of Stan's last match before his diagnosis - to Villa Park in a gruelling five-and-a-half day charity run in April.

The intrepid claret and blues fanatic plans to stop off at as many football grounds as possible throughout the challenge.

The proposed itinerary will see Mike run an average of around 25 miles per day.

Beginning on Monday April 8, he plans to run from the Emirates to St Albans on day one with visits to Wembley and Watford's Vicarage Route.

Day two will see him go from St Albans to Milton Keynes via the homes of Luton Town and MK Dons, while the day three jaunt from Milton Keynes to Northampton includes a stop off at Northampton Town's Sixfields Stadium.

Day four involves a trek from Northampton to Rugby, while Mike is set to visit the Ricoh Arena during his run from Rugby to Bodymoor Heath on the fifth day.

The challenge is set to finish on Saturday April 13 with a final run from Villa's training ground to Villa Park.

We look forward to hearing more from Mike as he gears up for the incredible challenge.

His official Twitter account for the challenge is @Run4Petrov.


With the release of the critically-acclaimed film Argo, we thought we'd select Ben Affleck movies for #VillaFilmFriday this week.

As you can see below, there were several crackers!

Pearl

 

Holte

 

Earl

 

Vlaar


Westwood

Congratulations to Ashley Westwood who came out on top in EA's Need For Speed challenge.

Westwood faced Darren Bent, Barry Bannan and Gary Gardner and was crowned "Villa's Most Wanted" at the event, which took place at Bodymoor Heath this week.

All four players were given two chances to clock up the fastest time on the newly-released console game, available for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita and PC.

Westwood actually trailed in last place after the first round, behind Gardner in No.1 spot with 1.06.40.

But the in-form midfield ace really turned on the style right at the death to pip Gardner and collect the crown.

In fact, his time - 1.04.91 - is the fastest so-far of all the Barclays Premier League players who have taken part to date.

All of Villa's players beat the previous personal best time, set by Arsenal's Theo Walcott with 1.15.08.

Westwood also starred in AVTV's pre-match show, which was brought to you from the event.

Westwood was a natural on the microphone as he chatted to Jack Woodward, below.

AVTV


Barry Bannan insists that the mood in camp is good ahead of the Arsenal game - despite a cheeky practical joke!

As part of the new website feature - Bodymoor Blog - where players write their own thoughts ahead of the home clashes at Villa Park - Bannan lifted the lid on a devilish prank which took place at the training ground.

He said: "The mood is so positive. We're all so close and really believe in each other. The camaraderie is so good. We're all focused on Aston Villa and we're absolutely determined to succeed as a group of players for the good of this football club.

"I always think it's a good sign if you can have good fun and good banter together when you're not training.

"Only this week, we came in from a good workout to find all our clothes chucked over the floor.

"Someone had gone in and taken all our stuff off the pegs and from inside the lockers and just launched them together in a pile on the floor. It took us ages to sort out socks from pants from jeans from tops. But we were all howling with laugher.

"I don't want to point the finger at anyone. But Shay Given had better watch himself over the next few days!"


Fan

The Barclays Premier League is preparing to welcome the 250 millionth fan through the turnstiles - and it could well be at Villa Park!

The momentous mark is expected to be reached on Tuesday November 27 when Villa take on Reading at Villa Park and Sunderland host Queens Park Rangers at The Stadium of Light .

Since its formation, the Barclays Premier League has been growing in popularity with average attendance figures increasing from 21,125 in 1992-93 compared to 34,646 during the 2011-12 season.

Over the last 20 years stadium capacities have grown across the country allowing an extra four million fans a season to watch their favourite teams.

Statistics for Villa Park reads as follows: 34,803 average and 13,607,940 in total.

To mark the occasion Barclays, title sponsor of the Barclays Premier League, is launching a 'Find the Fan' competition to reward a supporter and three friends from each of the 20 clubs with a VIP trip to see their team in a Barclays Premier League match, including hospitality and first class travel and accommodation.

Barclays photographers will be at all 20 Barclays Premier League fixtures on November 24 & 25 and 27 & 28 and will be taking exclusive pictures of both home and away fans on the matchdays to find a supporter from each club to represent the 250 million fans.

The images will be uploaded on to the Barclays Football Facebook site - www.facebook.com/BarclaysFootball - where fans will be asked to identify themselves to be eligible for the VIP prize draw.

Barclays are also taking a look back at the past 21 seasons by sharing some of the best images of those action packed years across their social media channels and inviting fans to post their memories of these historic moments.

Fans should go to www.facebook.com/BarclaysFootball for more details.

Make sure you're here for the Arsenal and Reading games for a chance to win the prize.


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