Aston Villa is a football club in the English Premier League, which was established in the year 1897. It is located in Wiiton, Birmingham. Since inception, Aston Villa has been playing in Villa Park, which is their home ground. The team has been involved in a number of key activities in the history of football. It is among the founding members of the 1988 football treaty that resulted into the birth of the Football League, which includes the famous English Premier League. The club was initially owned by Doug Ellis, but in 2006, Randy Lerner took over its ownership, after it was floated by the previous owner.
Aston Villa is not only among the oldest teams in the English Premier League, but also falls among the football teams that have set a remarkable track record. They have won the First Division Championship and the Football Association Cup seven times. Aston Villa ranks the fourth highest in awards given to English clubs. In 1981-82, the club also won the English Cup, and hence falls among the few English clubs that have won the EUFA League the English clubs. They won the English cup in May 1982, beating Bayern Munich 1-0.
Although Aston Villa has tried to defend its title, it had a massive loss recently; one that cannot be ignored. The 4-1 defeat of October, 2012, at Southampton was humiliating. Although their first half was quite good, Villa was unable to control the game in the second half.
Fans and Rivalries
Aston Villa commands a large fan base from across the globe. Statistics show that over 96% of Villa’s fans are whites. The team has developed several programs to involve their fans into activities that would make them identify with the team they love; Aston Villa. These include Villa community projects and interactive forums, where fans interact and ask questions about their team.
Birmingham city is their arch-rival. The two teams have a fierce rivalry, with each of them trying to gather the highest number of local fans. Birmingham was, however, relegated in 2010-2011, which means that they may have a chance to play in the next season. West Bromwich Albion is also another rival to Aston Villa. Towards the end of the 19th century, it contested three FA finals with Villa. Despite these rivalries, Aston Villa seems to enjoy the midland region since it is the only successful team that has managed to defend their record.
Through out Aston Villa’s history, varied players can be noted. These can be grouped as either, Halls of fame, or Players of the Year. While celebrating the 1998′s 100 years of League football, a list of legendary 100 players was released. Seven out of these were former Aston Villa Players. Trevor Ford, Clem Stephenson, Sammy Hardy and Danny Blanchflower are among the seven players. In July, 2009, Aston Villa’s two teams, two players, and one of their managers entered the Hall of Fame. The National Football Museum which administers the Hall of Fame in English Football listed Villa’s 1890 and1982 teams in the English Football Hall of Fame. Two players, Danny Blanchflower and Peter Schmeichel were also listed. Joe Mercer, a former manger was also among the lucky few that found themselves in the English Football Hall of Fame.
At the close of each football season, a professional body from the Professional Football Award (PFA) board for the Player of the year. Three of Aston Villa’s players have won this Award. Andy Gray won the PFA Player of the year in 1977 and in 1990, David Platt won it. Paul McGrath is the latest winner of the PFA’s Player of the year Award. He won it in 1993. There are also a number of Aston Villa Players, who have been listed under the under 23 PFA player of the year award.