Now Or Never For Aston Villa?
Now or never!?
Last week was almost as heart lifting on reflection, as it was heart breaking watching the inevitable 3rd goal go flying in! Whilst sat in a pub in my home town, alongside two friends who were cheering on the enemy, I was left crushed as we once again surrendered to the team everybody loves to hate from Manchester. It is hard to recall times in my pretty short life when I have witnessed a Villa win against Manchester United, and once again I was left disappointed.
However on reflection things weren't quite so bad. Yes, we had lost. Yes, I had to sit through the taunts of my friends. Yes, we dropped further behind L'Arse. BUT at least I could gain some solace from a pretty good performance. Over the week I have on a few occasions had to coax my dear old Dad away from the 10th storey window ledge of his work place, and asked him to try and remember a performance like that one against United. Because on reflection, I honestly cannot think of one such occasion. Yes, they were fielding a side weakened through injury and suspension, but that side and many of its players are still excellent, and we were on top for most of the game. And after all we only lost because of 2 excellent goals from the World Player of the Year (wrongly so in my opinion as he isn't fit to lace up Lionel Messi's very small boots!!), and an excellent goal from a young lad who is widely tipped for big things. Where is the shame in that!?
I have been very positive (unusually so for me if I'm honest) this season, and I will continue to be so. Although O'Neill makes mistakes ie. NEVER SIT BACK AND ALLOW UNITED ON TO YOU JUST BECAUSE YOU'VE GAINED A LEAD!! NEVER!, he has in general been excellent this season. And before everyone jumps on the farce that is a right back at left back, a midfielder at right back and a Brad junior as the midfield lynch pin (I realise it hasn't happened yet, but hey there is always the Everton game! :D), it was by using these slightly mad professor-ish tactics that MON took us up the table, and on one of the best run of results in recent years! He makes mistakes, of course. He gets results, I would have to say nearly 3 full years into his reign, yes. We are once again a side challenging for Europe, and are on the ascent.
A performance like the one at Old Trafford is surely an indicator of a return of some confidence. Barry was epic in the middle, Young was at times terrifying, and Gabby and Big John looked dangerous. A vast
improvements on recent performances, and in my humble opinion, if we play like that tomorrow we win, simple as that, maybe :S !
They may have lost, they may have made errors in allowing United too much space towards the end, they may have broke my heart once more, but the boys done good. Now here's to a victory against Everton. Maybe, just maybe, the dream of the pinnacle of European football being at Villa Park next season will still be alive on Monday. And if not? Well there is always next year! :D
We'll get there, by hook or by crook! :D UTV!!