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Surprise visitor at Villa Park for clash with Arsenal

For the first time in two years, Randy Lerner will be at Villa Park to watch Aston Villa play.

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Mark Thompson

One of the biggest criticisms of Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner is that he manages the club from afar. It's been, for instance, two years since he appeared at Villa Park for a home match of his club. Well, that streak is apparently ending today as Villa get set to take on Arsenal in a battle of the unbeatens.

It seems as if the visit has nothing to do with the sale of the club, and that can only further our beliefs that perhaps the owner is actually... well, interested. We've seen more investment over the summer than we expected, a new CEO, and new contracts at the club. Maybe Randy actually cares about this club now that Paul Lambert has shown it can be successful again.

And the thought of a Randy Lerner who cares is a tempting one. The last time he did so, before Martin O'Neill stabbed him in the back, Lerner saw the club consistently finishing in places for European competition. Let's hope the visit is a sign of renewed ties between club and owner, because I don't mind him so much in that position when he gives a damn.