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The Week In Villa #52 (14/8/09 - 20/8/09)

Friday, 14th August

It`s the last day before the new season and we have no more new signings so we will have to go with what we have. It`s back… I AM SO EXCITED!!!

Saturday, 15th August

Villa 0-2 Wigan. So much has been written about this that I wont tell you anything you don`t know so I will tell you how I saw it:

Worst performance since MON arrived
Our full-backs are absolutely useless - Bemoaning Luke Young at left-back and NRC/Gardner at right-back? I`d have that over them two clowns any day of the week
Our two central defenders are better at sweeping alongside someone who attacks the ball. They do not work as a duo. A new - dominant - defender is desperately required
Ashley Young believes his own press
The 'MON factor` that went missing towards the end of last season appears to have disappeared forever
4-4-2 doesn`t work when the defence is that deep that the midfield has too much ground to cover
Two 'conventional` strikers isn`t my favourite way to go either, I`d rather see a 5th midfielder that is creative - a second striker type - alongside, well, John Carew
John Carew and MON, despite what has been said, probably are not happy with each other

To my mind, Brad Friedel, Stan Petrov, Fabian Delph and James Milner are the only players that really come out with any credit, although Heskey improved on his first half performance - not that he was good in the second half, but he at least contributed, which he did not in the first half.

I am sure some will disagree about Delph, but to me it is too easy to just say Gareth Barry, blah blah blah. We could have had anyone in the middle and they would have struggled because of the tactical ineptness of the team.

Earlier in the day James Milner is linked to Liverpool. Yeah, that`ll happen!

Sunday, 16th August

I`m still seething.

Monday, 17th August

Rumours emerge that Luke Young is to join Hull. Given recent events, that seems unlikely.

MON says he is surprised by the fact that we used less players than anyone last season. Makes you wonder what else he doesn`t check out.

Tuesday, 18th August

Harry Redknapp says Jermaine Jenas and David Bentley aren`t leaving. Maybe that will put an end to the rumours.

I`m still furious about Saturday. What a joke.

Wednesday, 19th August

The squad for Rapid Vienna is announced, and thankfully it`s a strong one.

Thursday, 20th August

Rapid Vienna 1-0 Villa. Well, a fair bit of what I said about Saturday`s game still applies. I was pleased to see 4-5-1, albeit it was all a bit pointless without a creative midfielder. I think we can get the required result next week. But this was still rubbish.

That`s about it. So this is one year of 'The Week in Villa` and I will end it with a rant.

I`m an optimistic person by nature; heck, every time I buy a lottery ticket I am already making plans for the millions in my head. I also have a realistic element, which means that when I inevitably don`t win the jackpot, I am not that disappointed.

I often apply this philosophy to supporting Villa. I believe we can win most games when I go into them - I say most because I have give up on ManUre! - and I look at the bright side a lot. I have done that often with MON. Rather than concentrate on his transfer shortcomings, I concentrate on two consecutive top six finishes. Rather than worry about the Champions League qualification failure, I concentrate on our record points total for 12 years. Rather than worry about the poor defending, I concentrate on the exciting matches. Rather than worry about some serious tactical questions, I concentrate on automatically qualifying for Europe for the first time in years.

But, in the latter part of last season, something changed. Somewhere along the line, the belief that when we went 1-0 down it almost meant it just made it more exciting disappeared, and I stopped believing. The tactical decisions were getting stranger, the players seemed to care less, MON looked flustered. I put it down to the pressures and hoped we could come back this season stronger. I knew there would still be tactical problems but I hoped that the pre-season break would mean we could come back revitalized.

We have not.

Something is fundamentally wrong at the club, and whatever it is needs to be changed. Last season we proved we were capable of putting up a fight and let`s face it, that fight was ours to lose and we did. With a bit of an improvement we could make a better fight of it. The Barry thing doesn`t overly worry me, but the Laursen thing does. We need to replace him as well as we can, we need to look at more additions in as high a market as we can and we need to look at the tactics.

A few years ago Aston Villa was practically on it`s knees, and it`s been a bit of a rollercoaster ride over the last three years, but the pride had been restored.

It seems ridiculous saying this after one league game and one European game, however I can`t help but feel that if something doesn`t change soon we will be back on our knees.




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The Journalist

Writer: Sheriff Kimbo Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday August 21 2009

Time: 9:00AM

Your Comments

I share your mix of optimism/pragmatism...but don't feel the need to get despondent just yet... Don't forget that following Everton's 1st Euro qaulification under Moyes they were in the relegation zone after about 10 games the following season and still came back to finish 6/7th... We can still come back and have a fine season!
keithlees1978
I share your mix of optimism/pragmatism...but don't feel the need to get despondent just yet... Don't forget that following Everton's 1st Euro qaulification under Moyes they were in the relegation zone after about 10 games the following season and still came back to finish 6/7th... We can still come back and have a fine season!
keithlees1978
I have 100% faith in MON! Alex ferguson lost to burnley 1-0! They've dipped into the transfer market and bought three players! Nobody is calling for his head! One win and we're back up to them in the league! If we don't get that win, I'm not going to be booing or slandering Villa because I have more pride in myself. And because I know MON is a good manager; has the winning mentality at Celtic! Randy Lerner has put cash on the table for transfers and worked closely with MON to bolster the team! Villa seem to be trying to do something better than they previously have and have been getting far better results season wise! They lost a fantastic player in Gareth Barry to MC. I won't be booing him when we play them! He served us exceptionally well for 10 years. I remember where we've come from, I believe in Villa and I believe that we are moving in the right direction! Otherwise I wouldn't have bet my work mates that Villa will finish ahead of MUtd, liverpool and Arsenal :P! €30 in the bank :D :D :D
johnproche
I have 100% faith in MON! Alex ferguson lost to burnley 1-0! They've dipped into the transfer market and bought three players! Nobody is calling for his head! One win and we're back up to them in the league! If we don't get that win, I'm not going to be booing or slandering Villa because I have more pride in myself. And because I know MON is a good manager; has the winning mentality at Celtic! Randy Lerner has put cash on the table for transfers and worked closely with MON to bolster the team! Villa seem to be trying to do something better than they previously have and have been getting far better results season wise! They lost a fantastic player in Gareth Barry to MC. I won't be booing him when we play them! He served us exceptionally well for 10 years. I remember where we've come from, I believe in Villa and I believe that we are moving in the right direction! Otherwise I wouldn't have bet my work mates that Villa will finish ahead of MUtd, liverpool and Arsenal :P! €30 in the bank :D :D :D
johnproche
To be fair I didn't say I've totally given up hope yet - for one thing the window aint closed & MON traditionally does his work late on - but the signs are bad, and this isn't based on two games, it is based on performances since the Chelsea defeat. JP - I wont boo GB either. But I'm afraid you will be paying money out at the end of the season!
Sheriff Kimbo
To be fair I didn't say I've totally given up hope yet - for one thing the window aint closed & MON traditionally does his work late on - but the signs are bad, and this isn't based on two games, it is based on performances since the Chelsea defeat. JP - I wont boo GB either. But I'm afraid you will be paying money out at the end of the season!
Sheriff Kimbo
if i read anything else about Gareth Barry and Martin Laursen, I am going to gauge my eyes out with a spork. THEY WERE LAST SEASON, LETS MOVE ON AND STOP MAKING EXCUSES.
Mikey D-Man
if i read anything else about Gareth Barry and Martin Laursen, I am going to gauge my eyes out with a spork. THEY WERE LAST SEASON, LETS MOVE ON AND STOP MAKING EXCUSES.
Mikey D-Man
Mikey, first of all, how the hell are they excuses? Secondly, if you read it, I actually said I am not concerned about Barry and actually said that anyone saying we missed him are barking up the wrong tree, but Laursen needs replacing. Word it how you like, don't mention Laursen, we need at least one centre-back. So your caps locks rant looks a bit silly doesn't it.
Sheriff Kimbo
Mikey, first of all, how the hell are they excuses? Secondly, if you read it, I actually said I am not concerned about Barry and actually said that anyone saying we missed him are barking up the wrong tree, but Laursen needs replacing. Word it how you like, don't mention Laursen, we need at least one centre-back. So your caps locks rant looks a bit silly doesn't it.
Sheriff Kimbo
LOL I wasn't having a go at you, I was commenting in general. My posts on here are never directed in such a way to pin point people's opinions and judge them. You comment, I comment. Perhaps I placed mine in the wrong place and if I did I apologise and hold my hands up. I'm sure you'd do the same ;-) My issue is that every article I read in papers, forums, website, player interviews etc HAS to contain references to GB and ML which I find frustrating.
Mikey D-Man
LOL I wasn't having a go at you, I was commenting in general. My posts on here are never directed in such a way to pin point people's opinions and judge them. You comment, I comment. Perhaps I placed mine in the wrong place and if I did I apologise and hold my hands up. I'm sure you'd do the same ;-) My issue is that every article I read in papers, forums, website, player interviews etc HAS to contain references to GB and ML which I find frustrating.
Mikey D-Man
I was joking dude, I should have put a wink or something! Thing is that was part of what I was getting at, it's too easy to say "We'd have been better with Barry" when a) I don't particularly agree & b) it is, as you say, irrelevant! As I put, I actually felt sorry for Delph and Petrov, I mean 3 times I saw Delph go for a short pass off the back four but instead it was just lumped down the field, bypassing the midfield anyway.
Sheriff Kimbo
I was joking dude, I should have put a wink or something! Thing is that was part of what I was getting at, it's too easy to say "We'd have been better with Barry" when a) I don't particularly agree & b) it is, as you say, irrelevant! As I put, I actually felt sorry for Delph and Petrov, I mean 3 times I saw Delph go for a short pass off the back four but instead it was just lumped down the field, bypassing the midfield anyway.
Sheriff Kimbo
Mikey D-Man Sorry mate, can't resist this (can you please before reading this post get someone to video you and stick it on youtube)... right, here we go. What do you think about Gareth Barry leaving and Martin Laursen having to retire...!!!!!!!!!!! (just had an email from Mikey D-Man... it reads 'OUCH MY EYES')
The Fear
Mikey D-Man Sorry mate, can't resist this (can you please before reading this post get someone to video you and stick it on youtube)... right, here we go. What do you think about Gareth Barry leaving and Martin Laursen having to retire...!!!!!!!!!!! (just had an email from Mikey D-Man... it reads 'OUCH MY EYES')
The Fear
 

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