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‘Absolutely massive’ Why Aston Villa have finally got their status back


Aston Villa and the Championship just never felt right.

They were like that saggy old steroid user who had given up on the juice and swapped bodybuilding for the beach life in Benidorm.

But now, pumped up and flexing their muscles again, this sleeping giant is starting to remind the nation why, for want of better words, they are ‘absolutely massive’,

Sell-out stadiums in the second-tier are rare these days, so when Villa pack over 40,000 fans into their famous old ground it’s worth a mention.

And judging by the season-ticket sales this summer following promotion to the Premier League, securing two seats together on spec will be a lot more difficult than last term.

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Villa Park before Aston Villa v Everton

 

That the decision has been made to cap the number of season tickets at 30,000 is alarming.

Villa aren’t Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal or Chelsea, remember.

They haven’t got a sparkling new ground like Tottenham Hotspur, either – and there’s certainly no demand from tourists for tickets, although that could soon start to change.

Instead, though, there’s a loyal core of supporters who have been there through thick and thin.

There’s also the returning ‘plastics’ as those who have chosen to stay away during less exciting times are often referred to by the die-hard lot.

Right or wrong? That’s up for debate. Everyone’s got their own thoughts on the matter and opinion is certainly split in the stands.

It frustrates me when the fair-weather friends turn up to my golf club at the first sign of sun. I’ll also mock the January jokers who sign up to the gym and are never seen again when February turns.

But football is different isn’t it?

Surely a collective claret and blue force pulling in the same direction can only help those on the pitch?

A packed-out Villa Park is some sight. Imagine what Bournemouth fans must think when they hear the roar of the Holte End for the first game of the season? The Trinty Road Stand alone holds more than their ground!

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Villa Park

 

But this isn’t the time to be mocking other clubs, and that comparison certainly isn’t aimed at that.

This is the time to celebrate what’s great about Villa as the club enters the most exciting of times on the back of the scenes of joyous celebration at Wembley.

When season tickets went on sale again on Monday, fans flocked to sign up.

More than 20,000 had already been sold during the early bird period which means the club are well on course to smash the current record of 27,709 from the 2008/09 season – and reach that 30,000 milestone, too.

Just 8,000 tickets will be made available for matches if that ends up being the case, and if Villa get off to a decent start those will fly out week by week.

I remember the chants in the closing few games of that fatal Premier League season in 2015 – ‘We want our Villa back’ were the words.

It may have taken longer than hoped, but that wish has now come true.

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Jack Grealish and manager Dean Smith celebrate with the trophy.

 

Here’s what some of the Villa supporters have been saying about the season ticket sales:

@alexav_utv

“A waiting list for season tickets, we are massive #AVFC”

@BradAvfc96

“We’ve currently sold more season tickets than Liverpool did last season, the current champions of Europe, we’re just massive    #AVFC.”

@oimbaii

“Every home game this season is going to be a sellout. Last time we were in the Prem this was reserved for the likes of Man U or Liverpool. 42,785 for EVERY game! Get in there Villans! We are massive! #avfc”

@aaronss94

“Record number of season tickets sold. Loanee players eager to sign permanently. Coaching staff extending their contracts. Love the feel good vibe around the club, at the moment. In Dean we trust! #avfc.”

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@liamrose1

“All these ticket sales for the new season, but where were they at Rotherham away?”

@lewis_codes

“I’m one of the plastics #avfc

“The last two seasons would have been tough (getting ready for; and then having a baby). But the few years before that spent season ticket-less was because it was a **** place to be.

“Couldn’t care less what any other fan thinks though tbh.”

@DEANOFIELD

“Season ticket purchased. Not had one for a few years but have been home and away. Was at Wigan this season Wembley too. Always thought a full Villa park was like having a 12th man. Let’s enjoy full houses and stop ******* moaning at each other #avfc

@htl_00

“Only Villa fans could slate other Villa fans for buying a season ticket.”

@villamatt1874

“Why are villa fans having to justify themselves to other Villa fans over buying a Season ticket? Unbelievable.”

@TheTremontiPick

“What a difference a year makes…

“Small Heath – I want a refund on my season ticket for sacking Garry Monk.

“Smethwick – We can’t afford the paper for our season tickets.

“Aston Villa – We’ve had to stop people buying season tickets, sorry.

“Karma’s a b***h’.”

AUGUST

10: 5.30pm Tottenham Hotspur (a)

17: 3pm Bournemouth (h)

24: 3pm Everton (h)

31: 3pm Crystal Palace (a)

SEPTEMBER

14: 3pm West Ham United (h)

21: 3pm Arsenal (a)

28 3pm Burnley (h)

OCTOBER

5: 3pm Norwich City (a)

19: 3pm Brighton (h)

26: 3pm Manchester City (a)

NOVEMBER

2: 3pm Liverpool (h)

9: 3pm Wolves (a)

23: 3pm Newcastle United (h)

30: 3pm Manchester United (a)

DECEMBER

4: 7.45pm Chelsea (a)

7: 3pm Leicester City (h)

14: 3pm Sheffield United (a)

21: 3pm Southampton (h)

26: 3pm Norwich City (h)

28: 3pm Watford (a)

JANUARY

1: 3pm Burnley (a)

11: 3pm Manchester City (h)

18: 3pm Brighton (a)

21: 7.45pm Watford (h)

FEBRUARY

1: 3pm Bournemouth (a)

8: 3pm Tottenham Hotspur (h)

22: 3pm Southampton (a)

29: 3pm Sheffield United (h)

MARCH

7: 3pm Leicester City (a)

14: 3pm Chelsea (h)

21: 3pm Newcastle United (a)

APRIL

4: 3pm Wolves (h)

11: 3pm Liverpool (a)

18: 3pm Manchester United (h)

25: 3pm Crystal Palace (h)

MAY

2: 3pm Everton (a)

9: 3pm Arsenal (h)

17: 3pm West Ham United (a)

 



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