A group of Aston Villa supporters have called on Doug Ellis, the club chairman, to listen to offers from potential investors in the company after the collapse of a money-raising deal.
Villa hoped to raise up to £25 million by selling plots of land near to Villa Park, only for planning permission to be surprisingly refused.
The funds were to be spent on upgrading training facilities at Bodymoor Heath and bolstering the squad for David O'Leary, the manager, who constantly bemoans the lack of strength in depth.
Jonathan Fear, a spokesman for Villa Fans Combined (VFC), wants Ellis to loosen his financial control over the club and encourage other investors to provide financial help.
Fear said: "These plots of land were what Mr Ellis based his financial promises on. We now question where the money will come from. We question where the money will come from, not only to update the club's training facilities but also to strengthen the squad.
"The failure of the board's plans to raise much-needed revenue has highlighted the folly of discouraging outside investment into the club for fear of Mr Ellis losing his stranglehold over Aston Villa.
"The supporters of Aston Villa are left with a club failing to match its rivals both on and off the pitch and with no hope of improvement in fortunes unless the short-sighted and self-serving policies of Mr Ellis are reversed.
" VFC believes it is absolutely essential for the future prospects and prosperity of Aston Villa that Mr Ellis immediately signals that he is willing to listen to offers from outside groups or persons to invest in the club.
"The plans to upgrade the training ground were a key element in attracting and retaining top-class players at all stages of their careers from youth to first-team level. Without the revenue to perform the upgrade, those plans are left in tatters."
Fear reiterated that it is the desire of VFC that Ellis should stand down.
"Placing all of Villa's eggs into the property-development basket has failed, as did Mr Ellis's promise of a golden future from our FA Youth Cupwinning team, many of whom have since moved on," he said.
"These failures have shown the inability of Mr Ellis to progress Aston Villa as a football club and as a business. Many supporters feel that a turning point has been reached and that the need for new leadership has been starkly exposed. For the good of the club, Mr Ellis must now be held accountable for the failures and should step down and actively seek new investors."
Ellis was last night unavailable for comment.