Not a (Stamford) Bridge Too Far!
So, we're drawn against Chelsea at 'the Bridge' in the fourth round of the FL Cup.
This match should raise considerable interest, and for several reasons.
It's only recently that we've visited 'the Bridge' and obtained a highly creditable draw. And it was less than three years ago that Villa obtained that marvellous quarter-final win at VP over the Pensioners, with a glorious goal from Juan Pablo, the quality of which he's probably never got near to equalling since. His execution of that goal was sublime, and it may well have been as a result of that goal, and the general effort in that match, that Villa finished the season with a fine run and finished sixth in the League.
However, since then, Chelski have won the League twice, whilst the Villans have slipped downwards - until the arrival of Mr. Martin O'Neill. And what a transformation there's been since.
Unbeaten so far, we have a potential banana-skin to watch for at Anfield this week and other matches of equal concern before we go to 'the Bridge' to determine whether we have a right to expect this cup to arrive at Villa Park this season. But one thing is certain - we will go to 'the Bridge'with much confidence that we'll at least show them (again) that we're not attending at their ground just for the ride.
The match at 'the Bridge' will probably be worthy of a final in its own right, and perhaps Chris Sutton will want to show his former bosses that he's still got something to offer. If we don't win, then another draw will not be a surprise (to me at least) - and then a repeat of that 2003 match, when, we hope, JPA will re-perform that magic of that previous cup encounter.
Up the Villa,
Article submitted by John Lerwill