Lee Hendrie left Aston Villa after 14 years with a lump in his throat but vowed to prove then-boss Martin O’Neill wrong. The talented midfielder was told his game-time would be limited during O’Neill’s overhaul in 2006. Still only 29, Hendrie donned claret and blue for the final time at the Emirates in O’Neill’s first game before departing to join Stoke City on loan. Hendrie who made his debut aged 18 in 1995 explained just how his memorable Villa Park career ended.
Hendrie said: “I spoke to Martin. I was quite pleased he was coming into the club and I thought to myself, ‘He’s a manager I’ve always admired, he’s very enthusastic. This is my chance. I probably suit Martin’s style of football’. But it just didn’t seem to be. I was hampered with these calf strains. I couldn’t get to grips with them. That was always the problem, fitness-based. I was coming to the age of 30, which is when I left.
“I had a conversation with Martin and he was golden. He was straight up with me. He basically said he was looking to change the whole club around, getting a lot of the older players out and bring a lot of younger players in. I think the budget might have gone up with changes that had gone on around the place. He said, ‘If you think you’re not going to get any football you’re granted to go out and play and I won’t stand in your way’. He was honest with me which I respected. Not all managers are like that.”
/ 22 hours ago
#PLStories- Thomas Tuchel reveals the reason N’Golo Kante missed Chelsea’s victory over Norwich City #CHELSEAFC #NCFC
Thomas Tuchel has revealed that N’Golo Kante’s injury is nothing serious and he will...
/ 22 hours ago
How frustrating was that not to get a win? It was, of course, frustrating...
Rafa Benitez claimed that he and his Everton squad were working on set pieces...
#PLStories- Patrick Vieira gives verdict on VAR decision to rule out Christian Benteke goal against Newcastle #CPFC
Patrick Vieira said the decision to disallow Christian Benteke’s goal against Newcastle United on...
#PLStories- Jurgen Klopp says Man Utd ‘have to learn’ same brutal lesson as Liverpool did from Aston Villa shock #LFC #MUFC
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp admits he forgot how many goals Aston Villa scored against...