Villa Midfielders Left 'Dismayed'
James Nursey at The Mirror says that both Nigel Hokey-Cokey and Steve Sidwell will play tonight against Rapid Vienna.
The report says the midfielders both went to the manager after Fabian Delph and Marc Albrighton were preferred over them in the match against Wigan at the weekend.
From where I sit (right by the bench) it was clear to see that NRC was far from happy through the game and after young Mac Albrighton was brought on instead of him, with Sidwell by then on the pitch in place of Delph, he looked hopping mad. In fact, to be fair, he looked incredulous.
As the report by James says, both had been in form through pre-season and NRC was captain in the Peace Cup win, the next he is on the bench and a kid is preferred over him!
The report says that the duo were left 'dismayed' which I think accurately portrays how the Hokey Cokey - and to a lesser extent Craig Gardner looked when they remained on the bench with an inexperienced youth player getting on instead. I'd love to say Marc proved the managers decision right but he looked a little out of his depth at that stage of the game, we were 2 down and all at sixes and sevens. Would NRC or Gardner made much difference? Probably not but I suppose they were more interested in how far they had perhaps sunk in the pecking order, especially NRC.
Still, it is a squad game, looks like MON is going to start using more players this season** so I guess they just have to fight to get into the team and once in play to stay in.
** MON Surprised By End Of Season Numbers