The Villa times - 27/02/2009
Unoial Villa News...
You've got to laugh! An atom of hydrogen at right-back! Click Here (thanks for that Nigel!)
The excellent weekly column by Steve Wade: Something For The Weekend (226)
Vital Villan: Spurs and Villa have been criticised by UEFA and Platini after fielding weakened teams in the UEFA Cup. According to French papers (apparently as I don't speak French) Platini is said to be fuming with both clubs for devaluing the competition and it's said if he was able to he would take action over the issue. Apparently Article 3 of the UEFA Cup regulations state that: 'On entering the competition participating clubs agree: d) to field their strongest team throughout the competition.' UEFA themselves believe it would be extremely difficult to prove that either club had broken the rules, or at least sufficiently enough to warrant disciplinary action. Full article: UEFA Get Their Knickers In A Twist
Have you tried AVTV? If not, you can do so for free over the weekend: AVTV Free Weekend Access
An evening with Paul Merson at Villa in aid of the Paul Birch Trust: Click Here
Before moving on to focus on the run in to the end of the season, my opinion on surrendering our chance of silverware. Full article + some song suggestions! From Villa Flags To White Flags - Modern Footie?
Vital Villan: Marc Albrighton has admitted both he and Bannan were nervous before kick off, as they only found out they were both playing 60 minutes before they walked out on the pitch. Speaking on the official site Albrighton explained that he and Bannan thought only one of them would make it onto the pitch to start, and that they were both surprised to find they were in the starting lineup together. 'It was amazing. We both found out an hour before kick-off that we were starting and we were both really looking forward to the game. We were a bit nervous but once we got our first touches everything was fine. We settled in well and gave a good account of ourselves. To make my debut in this stadium - that hosted the Champions League final - was unbelievable. I really enjoyed it.' Full article: Albrighton Admits Nerves
Vital Villan: Barry Bannan isn't letting his start against CSKA Moscow go to his head, and is simply concentrating on the reserves next match against Chelsea. Full quotes: Bannan Staying Grounded
Two more defeats... The youngsters do themselves proud though... This and more with Sheriff Kimbo The Week In Villa #27 (20/02/09 - 26/2/09)
Tickets are still available for the weekend's crunch game against Stoke City at Villa Park. Curtis Davies now wants to see Villa get back to winning ways and push for a top four spot in the League. He told the official site: 'Our priority now is the Barclays Premier League and we have to push on now for that top four spot. Our home form hasn't been as good as our away form this season. We need to pick that up - definitely starting against Stoke.' Full quotes + ticket news: Right, Back To Positive - Villa v Stoke
Video preview Villa v Stoke: Click Here
Martin O'Neill praised the kids for their performances against CSKA Moscow and added, on the official site: 'I thought we were always in the game. We always felt we were capable of scoring a goal and we had one or two opportunities to do so.' Adding, 'We tried our utmost but it wasn't to be. The last goal was dispiriting because I don't think it gave a true reflection on how we did. We were pressing forward to try and get that equaliser. I think in spite of the scoreline it was a gritty display from the team.'
Match stats CSKA Moscow v Villa: Click Here
Stoke boss Tony Pulis is expecting a tough game on Sunday as his side come to Villa Park. He told Sky Sports: 'This will be very tough for us.' After resting players for the Moscow game Pulis said, 'I almost felt like ringing Martin to complain about that! But he knows what he wants for his club and he has handled his squad accordingly.' Adding 'But it means that they will be coming at us with all guns blazing now on Sunday, I have no doubts about that. Finishing in the top four for them is all important and they will have all their big name players back for our game.'
More reports today saying that Villa are to enter contract talks with Stiliyan Petrov.
Luke Young told the Express & Star the players know the pressure is on them now: 'There is pressure on us now - but there has been ever since we were fourth and fifth. Every game there is pressure to win because the top teams win week in, week out and that is what we need to do to stay with them. It is pleasing that the games are coming quickly again and it is important to stop the rot.'
Also in the Express & Star MON said he won't be beating himself up about the decision adding 'I`m disappointed that we have gone out of the competition having started quite some months ago. We had played a lot of games this year. It wasn`t a decision that was taken lightly....The circumstances eventually forced us to make my decision. I am disappointed but I will have to see what the rest of the season brings to see if that disappointment is worsened.'
Thought for the day: 'The right to bear arms is slightly less ludicrous than the right to arm bears. (Chris Addison at the Pleasance)