Saintly Aston Villa chairman Randy Lerner will lay on and pay for a fleet of coaches to take about 6,000 claret and blue fans down to Stamford Bridge for the November 8th League Cup tie with Chelsea.
Whatâ€™s really great about this is that the fans had already paid for tickets, and so were going anyway. Can you think of anything less Doug Ellis like? The gesture is apparently a â€œthank youâ€ to Villa supporters and is guaranteed to cement Lernerâ€™s place as the Premiershipâ€™s most popular American owner (the Glazers have some catching up to do at Manchester United) and maybe even the best Chairman in the Premiership.
And Villa fans will be even more grateful to Lerner come January should the billionaire open up his (presumably weighty) cheque book for Martin Oâ€™Neill, and in a few years Aston Villa could well be the counter argument for those who suggest that an English owner is fundamental to success.