Date: 10th November 2007 at 11:44am
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Aston Villa director General Charles Krulak will NOT be attending the second city derby tomorrow – but his reason has nothing to do with the “pigs in mud” row with Birmingham City chairman David Gold.

Gold took offense with Krulak’s comments surrounding the arguments about ticket prices for Sunday’s game. The former Commandant of the US Marine Corps made a reference to wrestling with a pig in mud on one of the internet message-boards he liases with fans on.

General Krulak said: “Not sure what Mr. Gold is after other than publicity. When you get down in the mud and wrestle with a pig, the pig loves it…and you get muddy. I think I will just let him continue to talk.”

After a series of back-and-forth claims in the press, Gold earlier this week stressed he is still not happy – and claimed General Krulak hadn’t apologised, despite suggestions that the matter had been resolved.

Gold told the Birmingham Mail: “If General Krulak doesn’t come then in a way I will be pleased but on the other hand I would like to confront him and talk to him face-to-face and tell him how I feel and that we are all in this together.

“I feel I have been an orchestrator of good relations and behaviour between our clubs over the last 15 years and then this guy comes from nowhere and insults me.

“I don’t want there to be any bad blood between Birmingham City and Aston Villa but, in this instance, I feel aggrieved. I have been insulted and I don’t deserve it. I have had nothing in the way of an apology, so how does all that work out?”

However, Gold will not get his chance to meet the General – for now – as the former man-of-war told Vital Aston Villa that he is under doctor’s orders not to travel due to a bad back.

He wrote: “I will not be at the game…but not because I wouldn’t want to see anyone from the opposing Club. I cannot make the game because my Doctor does not want me travelling until my back gets better.”

How much of the apparent bad-bloody between the two men (or towards General Krulak from Gold, to be fair) is 100 per cent genuine and how much is pure pantomime is up for debate, but in a way it is nothing more than an unwanted distraction.

Hopefully the Blues will do the talking on the pitch and send a message around the world – to Aston Villa directors everywhere.