Aston Villa Club Chairman ‘Cleans House’ Before Chelsea Match

Farandu Life is reporting that Aston Villa’s striker/winger Gabriel Agbonlahor was left off the squad before facing Chelsea this week, for apparently being seen smoking a Shisha pipe in Dubai.

This following reports that Aston Villa had just lost their second manager for the season, as Remi Garde who reportedly left the club on “mutual consent” earlier in the week was replaced by his former assistant Eric Black.

The Guardian published an article about Remi Garde’s departure, touting his professional record but also providing more details as to why he left.

Aston Villa premiere league team
Aston Villa's Remi Garde, right, watches from the touchline during his team's English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Aston Villa at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Saturday March 5, 2016. [image by Jon Super | AP Photo]

“Garde is the latest high-ranking figure to leave Villa in recent weeks, following the departure of chief executive Tom Fox and sporting director Hendrik Almstadt. It is all part of a cleaning up process at the club which is being led by the recently appointed chairman, Steve Hollis, and includes a thorough investigation into how one of English football’s oldest and largest institutions find themselves in such a mess.”

Tom Fox, mentioned in the article, had been with Aston Villa since 2014 when he agreed to help them put a board together with Steve Hollis to get the team back in shape, but in a statement made on the Aston Villa site — when he realized the changes being made to his role — he said he felt it was best for him to “seek other challenges.”

Another article by The Guardian, which writes of Hendrik’s leaving, refers to Aston Villa as ending up at the bottom of the premiere league for losing its previous five matches.

Aston Villa pays for their mistake
Aston Villa's Jordan Ayew, centre, reacts after a missed opportunity during his team's English Premier League soccer match between Manchester City and Aston Villa at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, England, Saturday March 5, 2016. [image by Jon Super | AP Photo]

The Farandu Life article referenced earlier also makes mention of the various names on the list to replace Garde for the long term.

The Aston Villa F.C. club is in the Premier League which is considered the highest level in English football.

It isn’t known if the sacking of Gabriel Agbonlahor is permanent as the Aston Villa clubs board is currently conducting an investigation on the image, which has extensively made its rounds through social and traditional media.

The player was on holiday in Dubai last week where the image was taken.

The Express And Star originally reported on the story and quotes Eric Black when he was asked about the situation.


“There’s an internal investigation, the club have taken that decision. I’ve taken the decision from the footballing side to remove him from the squad just for this game, purely because I don’t want anything to distract the players and their surroundings for the game. I want that to be purely their focus for the Chelsea game. I will speak to him again on Monday morning and I will take it from there. He will be back reporting for training on Monday. The investigation is into the things you have seen in the media. I won’t go into details because the investigation is still on-going and once those results have come in and the club have made a decision you will find out. I’ve spoken to Micah, it’s slightly different circumstances. He’s in the squad.”

It’s been reported that Aston Villa’s on-field captain Micah Richards was also spotted on the same field with Agbonlahor, but was not subject to the same disciplinary action and will still be in the game against Chelsea.

For the better part of his life, the 28-year-old Agbonlahor has been with the Aston Villa club since 1994, where he came through as a youth player before he signed a professional contract with the club in 2005.

Gabriel Agbonlahor of Aston Villa in 2013
Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho, right, vies for the ball with Aston Villa's Gabriel Agbonlahor during the English Premier League soccer match between Aston Villa and Liverpool at Villa Park Stadium in Birmingham, England, Sunday, March 31, 2013. [image by Kirsty Wigglesworth | AP Photo]

The Express And Star source also refers to Stan Collymore, a former Aston Villa striker, who strongly suggested that they not bring back the player, as he has been at the club for too long and hasn’t been challenged enough, even stating that he would say this to Agbonlahor himself.

The decisions made by the Aston Villa chairman, Steve Hollis, are certainly a sign of how serious and important it is for the team to remain in the premier league, and to improve its reputation, especially against tomorrow’s game with Chelsea FC.

[Featured image by Jon Super | AP Photo]