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O'Neill's Everton Verdict

O'Neill's Everton Verdict

Martin O'Neill has described todays attacking display as an 'absolute dream' as we took a point in a thrilling 3-3 draw against Everton.

Easter commitments got in the way of me watching the match today, but judging by the comments on the message board we can consider ourselves unlucky to not have taken all 3 points, although it appears on reflection a draw was the fair result even if it was the result we didn't want.

Speaking on the official site O'Neill explained the obvious, that taking 4th place now was going to be extremely difficul, but that we were in no way going to give up on the fight.

'I thought we were fantastic. Going forward we were an absolute dream but defensively, we were not-so-clever.

'It was high entertainment and a fantastic game - and we should have won it at the death with a great chance.

'We fought back from both 2-0 and 3-1 down. In terms of character and determination, in the run we have been in, it was fantastic.

'We went to Old Trafford and played how we have most of the season away from home. We got great confidence from that and took it on this afternoon - at least going forward. However, we conceded three goals at home. You shouldn't need to score four goals to win a game at home.

'In terms of catching Arsenal, we are certainly not going to down tools and give up the fight.

'If I look at it after their win at Wigan, I accept it is going to be hard. But we won't give up because Arsenal still have some very difficult games to play.

'I certainly haven't given up hope - not at all.'

Nice to see our attackers back in the grove, but as O'Neill rightly points out we should not be conceeding 3 goals at home if we have dreams of the Champions League.

It has to be addressed, but I'm thankful of attacking form is coming back now. What we need are more performances like this to tally with 3 points taken in games.

Writer:Mike Field
Date:Sunday April 12 2009
Time: 7:13PM


'Lerner, committed to a programme of investment in his American football franchise Cleveland Browns, would also like to see the average age of the squad reduced.' saw this in a mirror article and it made me laugh. and apparently half our squad are going to be sold this summer! shows what absolute tripe some journalists write. can't believe they are allowed to print lies
12/04/2009 19:46:00
ric112 There are forums to post on , why don't you use them ? this is a match verdict by MON !
12/04/2009 19:54:00
I was all set to come on here and give MoN absolute pelters after reading headlines that he'd conceded 4th place to Arsenal. But I shouldn't be surprised to read that actually that isn't the case at all - further evidence that ricc112's point about journalists writing tripe is time and again self-evident. Going on my predictions for each sides remaining fixtures, if Villa were to prove me wrong again next week and beat West Ham, having drawn today, that would overturn the 2 point lead I predicted Arsenal would have at season's end. What I'm trying to say is that should we gain maximum points from 6 eminently winnable games, we have a chance (and it's a greater chance than it otherwise would be if Arsenal hadn't lost both Gallas and Djourou). That said, I think we have no chance. And lastly, in my view, if we do finish 4th, it'll be in spite of MoN, and the many inexcusable mistakes he's made, rather than because of him. Much improved performance today - though defensively still inept - against a far superior team to the one we faced a week ago. For that, the players, and I stress it is just the players, deserve credit.
12/04/2009 20:19:00
I thought this write up worthy of a larger audience, so here's the link: Barry WAS inspirational. He's had technically superior games to be sure, but he still showed great all-round football ability, and more importantly, and more impressively, the heart and desire the article writer emphasised. How anyone has ever doubted Gareth's love for the club is beyond me, because in every game he's played he's given absolutely everything (even if the vagaries of a team sport sometimes make that difficult to discern). He is unquestionably a Villa great (and given the calibre of player to have earned that tag, that is a wonderful achievement in itself). Had he not found himself serving the club during some of its darkest days (even given the descent into the old 3rd division), we would be witnessing the unfolding of the most distinguished playing career in Villa's modern history. If there is one man who is beyond rebuke, it is this man. I'm going to have to stop there because I'm beginning to well up...
12/04/2009 20:28:00
Saw the match live and have watched on Setanta since. Setanta made some good observations pre match namely the record before and after the Laursen injury. We need him back playing for the run in, and we need to find a replacement for the future, cos we have not got anyone close to him yet. Also the Cahill goal should have been disallowed for fouls on Brad and Curtis, and we should have had at least one of the penalty claims in the first half. Should have been 4-2 to villa - at least.
12/04/2009 21:06:00
Can't wait for MOTD2, few more beers and I might think is was 4-2 to villa!
12/04/2009 21:07:00
Albarnista totally agree about Barry, thought he was immense today. Battled to the end, won more headers than I think I've seen him win in a game before and was technically, clearly the best player on the pitch. When he wriggled through two players and played a peach of a ball to Young with the outside of his foot was quite the moment. The pen was never in doubt (despite setanta tempting fate by changing the score before it went in!) And to finish his reaction when he scored that pen should be enough, his passion for us is clear. I for one can only wish him well if he gets the chance to play at the very top at what will be the near twilight of his career. In a complete non related point, a friend of mine ripped off a Villa bracelet I had kept on for two seasons and since then we haven't won a game. I know a lot of people blame the change of tactics and lack of squad size but I honestly think I might be to blame, and for that I am sorry. UTV.
13/04/2009 03:09:00
MON summed it up perfectly, very good going forward, shaky at the back. I think that a draw was a fair result, in a game between the undisputed fifth and sixth best teams in the land. Both clearly someway below the 'top four' though.
13/04/2009 05:44:00
Thank god MON recognises we need some quality defenders. Cahill and Fellani get on my nerves. Both dirty cheats to make up for their lack of ability
13/04/2009 12:28:00
Agree with almost everything you say - possibly including the business with your bracelet! However, may I suggest that Barry won't be nearing the twilight of his career for a while yet. He's just turned 28, but given he's never been blessed with pace, has a masterful footballing brain, and is a model professional, I can see him playing at the very top at least until he's 35, which is another seven years! Tragically, I think 'at the top' looks like it won't be with Villa. But eighteen points left to win, so you never know...
13/04/2009 13:37:00
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