Robert Pires signs 6 month contract. Interview on SSN coming up.
We knew this was coming, and now that I've calmed down a bit, it's easier to see this as a positive development. Pirès is 37 years old. Unless Gérard Houllier is much stupider than I've given him credit for, he's not going to be a starting player. While Pirès has featured mostly on the wing, there's no way he's taking the place of Stewart Downing or Marc Albrighton. If he moves into the center, which seems likely, he can provide much-needed cover for a dying midfield.
And that's the point. He'll be cover. He won't be displacing our youth. I'm not going to lie--in fact, I think it's quite evident that we on 7500 love the youngsters of AVFC--it's the fact that we're playing those with little first-team experience that gets me out of bed for the early matches. I love the passion and excitement that these kids bring to the match. But if Pirès is here as cover, if he's here simply to provide a solid option to help the youth continue in their development, then why not?
It's the January, and then the summer, transfer windows that will tell us more about Houllier. At this point, he seems to have faith in the fact that Villa's future rests in its younger players. If he starts bringing in old, tired stars of the past during either of those windows, that's when Villa fans should get concerned.