Fox has created the new role to enhance the development of players, both current and future, so that Aston Villa can fight for a place at the very top of the Premier League. Paul Lambert is expected to stay and assist with Fox's hunt for a professional capable of steering Villa's management on the right course. This follows Fox's recent scouting revamp and is likely to be the next stage of nurturing talent for Aston Villa's future.
So, what exactly is a 'Director of Football'? The term can mean almost anything, to be quite honest. Directors of Football are usually head scouts, who find talent and send teams off to analyse said talent. Some directors act as the middleman between the coach and the chairman. It's quite akin to the structure of football in the U.S.A where a head coach will manage a NFL team at the x's and o's level, whilst the general manager will deal with scouting, drafting and contracts. This structure means the coach can focus on one thing - the game.
Villa's Director of Football looks set to be appointed in the summer before the start of the next season and will not be helping out with scouting and transfers, as Villa already have a 'Head of Recruitment', but will be taking on a far more modern and interesting role. He/She will be managing the sports analysis and sports science for AVFC, so Villa can finally become a 21st century footballing team.
The 'sports science/sports medicine' portion of the job role is extremely interesting as it follows the example set by the Milan Lab. The Milan Lab have made it possible, through various degrees of research and analysis, for players 'past their peak' to play at the very top level of Italian football for the past ten years. People like Paolo Maldini and Pipo Inzaghi have benefited from this, playing for AC Milan well into their 30's. The research into diet, sports data and sports science has enabled even the most average players of the Milan team to find their true potential and fit into a role that according to analysis and data, suits them. This kind of information is invaluable to a person like Paul Lambert, who has bitten off more than he can chew with square pegs/round holes. The hiring of a Director of Football should make Aston Villa more of a appealing deal to a potential owner as this role will reap rewards for the club in the next ten years. This news should be of massive interest to not only Aston Villa fans, but fans of modern football.