Thanks to the stupendous win at Arsenal its a question pundits have been answering on radio, TV and in the news media.
Most I've come across rightly still feel Arsenal will do it but most again feel that Villa have the best chance of finishing 5th until Man City get their act together and again most don't think that will be before this seasons end.
Me . Well I agree with those who said in the excitement of the win Saturday that we are good enough. You can't argue with wins at Arsenal and Prague, and against Ajax. The squad, especially the first XV are capable of a top 4 finish, if any of the usual 4 slip up. Its possibly even good enough if they are not.
Will we though ?
No idea. Like any sensible fan, as some of O'Neill's team selections have left much to be desired and our resulting performances left plenty to be desired. Simply put results against Stoke, Newcastle especially Boro would at least have put us 2 points clear of Utd and 3 over Arsenal. By results I mean a draw. Had we won and not lost any, there would have been even more excitement over our league position after Saturdays game.
It might even have topped the unbeaten run JG had back when we topped the PL who knows. For me the money spent back in the summer, the 3rd biggest spend in Europe, has pushed us on enough allied to other teams starting poorly, to make us serious top 4 contenders, and but for those poor results against sides we should not have lost too, we would be top 4 and with points in hand.
Luckily the injury situation is holding up, although I have doubts about the attitude of some players, but its a fine line between success and failure, and the higher in the league you progress the finer the line gets.
Don't get me wrong, I in no way feel we are yet anyway near the talent level of Utd, Chelsea, Liverpool, or Arsenal, but as Mart said after the game we have some real talent here, we do.
Do we have the managerial ability to bring about the level of consistency needed and enough talent to maintain a season of it.
I think not and I don't think January will improve it enough if at all, which might be our problem. Yes Randy's generosity has helped tremendously but he'll need to fund far more to enable a complete breakthrough
Therein lies the problem. All the best players go to the best clubs and even if we finished in the top 4 I'd question whether we would have the willingness to bring in the really top players.
Still we have to finish top 4 first and cross that argument after. For now yes the squad is good enough, will it finish top 4 I doubt but hope it will.
Manager Tim Sherwood has spoken of his disappointment - and shouldered the blame - for today's one nil loss to Stoke City.
All the stats from Aston Villa (0) vs (1) Stoke, Villa Park, 3/10/15 Att: 33,189
Statistics, damn lies and Aston Villa..
Bit of a mix and match today from manager Tim Sherwood's pre Stoke press conference.
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