UK time is: 12:20:26
Vital Login
Social Login

Choose your club

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's Football, It's Vital'

If only we'd played well...

I`ve saw plenty of our fans saying they were happy with this performance - I have to be honest and say that the most pleasing thing for me is knowing we got a fairly comfortable draw against one of our main competitors with half the team not playing anywhere near their best.

It was a respectable performance. City play nice stuff and have a threatening (albeit slightly overrated) forward line that was always going to push us back at times. Of course, we did our best to help them out with that by dropping too deep far too often, which, as always happens when we play 4-4-2, left large gaps in the middle for our midfield to cover. John Carew, while largely ineffectual again, to his credit worked hard and tried to help out the middle men where he could.

Another problem with 4-4-2 is the tactic of 'Carew flicks it on to Agbonlahor` is all too predictable; there were many occasions where Toure went with Carew and essentially let him win the ball while City doubled up on Gabby. It`s not difficult to defend, and when our wingers aren`t playing well (Young especially was very disappointing) our attacking threat isn`t anywhere near as effective as it should be.

That`s not to say it was all bad. Friedel was solid and all of the back four did well with Dunne putting in an exceptional performance. Petrov was, in my opinion, the best of any of the central midfielders on show, and I thought Gabby played well, especially in the second half.

The first half started with us as the better side. From where I was sitting it looked like we wanted it more and with us defending well, it seemed like it was only a matter of time before we took the lead. That unsurprisingly came from a set-piece; City are one of the worst teams in the league for defending set-pieces. Another point of chagrin for me on the night; if our delivery had been better I believe we could have won the game on that alone.

But back to the goal and what a moment it was, as ex-City favourite Richard Dunne climbed well - beating ex-Villa favourite Gareth Barry in the process - and smashed a tremendous header past Shay Given.

The next ten/fifteen minutes we had the bit between our teeth and I was hoping we would score again because City were inevitably going to get their spell on top. The last third of the first-half saw us defending far too deep and inviting the pressure on us. While there were no real 'heart in mouth` moments, it was clear that something needed to change in the second half.

It didn`t.

The second half was quite an end-to-end affair, but where as City had more of the controlled play, we were looking to play our counter attack game. There is nothing wrong with that plan of attack; if there was, neither Floyd Mayweather nor Lennox Lewis would have ever won world championships! Plus, as MON rightly pointed out, City`s neighbours won more than one trophy playing that way. The problem was, with three of our four forward men not at their best, and Sidwell doing that awol job he sometimes does in the middle of the park - although that, in my opinion, is down to the formation as much as it is my ginger brother from another mother! - it was not overly effective.

City did get the equalising goal, with some nice close passing and a good finish by Bellamy. Again, it was born out of us defending too deep but what can I say? We play 4-4-2, and that is what happens.

If anything summed the night up, it was as we had a little bit of pressure in the final seconds of added-on time and it all vanished with Milner and Heskey getting themselves in a muddle. It was just one of those nights. But that for me is the real positive - we can play a lot better than that (from an attacking point of view at least) and we still got a relatively comfortable draw against a side who, according to Vital Man City yesterday, apparently just needed to not play badly in order to beat us. Well they certainly didn`t play badly, and we were nowhere near our best.

Summary: Friedel and the back four were fine. James Collins does his job well as an individual but he drops deep too often which causes us problems as a defensive unit. Carlos Cuellar as always is not a full-back and it is not his fault that he is playing there, but we really could have done with someone there that offered us more going forward. Dunne in particular was superb, and Warnock had his best game so far for us.

Milner didn`t get on the ball much, and Young had as off a night as I have ever seen him for us. Sidwell doesn`t really want the ball, which is a problem in the middle of the park, but then neither does NRC when he`s in there. Neither, incidentally does De Jong, which meant Petrov and Barry were the two men doing the playmaking for either side until Ireland come on. Barry didn`t play well and I don`t think he revelled in the limelight as some players do. Personally I thought the booing was well out of order but hey, we all have our idiot fans. Petrov had a good game I felt, he was left with too much to do yet again but I don`t think he could have done much more. Carew isn`t playing well and Agbonlahor is!


Chelsea next, and if we play 4-4-2 I really fear for us. But for now, let`s just raise a glass to Richard Dunne…






Use your social login to comment on front page articles. Login using you Facebook, Twitter, Google or LinkedIn accounts and have your say!



*Try Vital Mobile FOR FREE for the latest news, scores, fixtures and so much more*

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Sheriff Kimbo Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday October 6 2009

Time: 12:51PM

Your Comments

Thought Barry played a lot better than either of our two midfielders, he actually wanted the ball and when he had it he looked to play it forward and create, whereas with Petrov he in main players it sideways or backwards and creates nothing.
KRS186
Thought Barry played a lot better than either of our two midfielders, he actually wanted the ball and when he had it he looked to play it forward and create, whereas with Petrov he in main players it sideways or backwards and creates nothing.
KRS186
I'll toss that argument back at you by suggesting if Petrov had an option, he may play it forward. The lack of movement up top was shocking on occasion.
Sheriff Kimbo
I'll toss that argument back at you by suggesting if Petrov had an option, he may play it forward. The lack of movement up top was shocking on occasion.
Sheriff Kimbo
I thought Ba££y had a poor game and it was Stephen Ireland that made them look a better side when he was introduced. The Steve Sidwell enigma is a strange one. When he plays, we goes "missing" but we don't lose, but it's that Ireland type of player that we could do with, someone who can get themselves into an advanced position and have a go from the edge of the box, someone to thread that killer ball for Gabby or Big John to run onto. This is what we require from "The Ginger Ninja". Although we don't lose when he plays, I can't see what he brings to our team???
bazzah
I thought Ba££y had a poor game and it was Stephen Ireland that made them look a better side when he was introduced. The Steve Sidwell enigma is a strange one. When he plays, we goes "missing" but we don't lose, but it's that Ireland type of player that we could do with, someone who can get themselves into an advanced position and have a go from the edge of the box, someone to thread that killer ball for Gabby or Big John to run onto. This is what we require from "The Ginger Ninja". Although we don't lose when he plays, I can't see what he brings to our team???
bazzah
Having watched the game twice now I could pontificate for a long time on how I disagree with many of your assessments - especially the overall comment that we defended too deep. Pushing forward against a team playing with the likes of Bellamy (pace), Wright-Phillips (pace) and Adebayor (pace) would be absolute suicide. Young was injured in a nasty challenge by De Jong midway through the first half and struggled after that - he stayed on because he was still a threat and because he completely nullified the attacking threat of Zaballeta. Milner kept Wayne Bridge quiet all night. Man City's goal wasn't the result of us defending too deep - it was a counter-attack.....
gmvillan
Having watched the game twice now I could pontificate for a long time on how I disagree with many of your assessments - especially the overall comment that we defended too deep. Pushing forward against a team playing with the likes of Bellamy (pace), Wright-Phillips (pace) and Adebayor (pace) would be absolute suicide. Young was injured in a nasty challenge by De Jong midway through the first half and struggled after that - he stayed on because he was still a threat and because he completely nullified the attacking threat of Zaballeta. Milner kept Wayne Bridge quiet all night. Man City's goal wasn't the result of us defending too deep - it was a counter-attack.....
gmvillan
As for Chelsea, 4-5-1 (as Wigan did last weekend) is the way to play against them.
bazzah
As for Chelsea, 4-5-1 (as Wigan did last weekend) is the way to play against them.
bazzah
But the point, GM, is that it makes it too difficult for us to do anything else. I haven't watched the game again so if my memory of the goal was incorrect then I hold my hands up. But there is a difference between holding too high a line and just not defending too deep. Jesus, they aint as good as some people make out, anyone would think they were the other lot in Manchester.
Sheriff Kimbo
But the point, GM, is that it makes it too difficult for us to do anything else. I haven't watched the game again so if my memory of the goal was incorrect then I hold my hands up. But there is a difference between holding too high a line and just not defending too deep. Jesus, they aint as good as some people make out, anyone would think they were the other lot in Manchester.
Sheriff Kimbo
I think that match report sums up my feelings from the top of the Holte. The infantile booing and singing against Barry actually showed Villa in a bad light. So to the morons who sang vile songs to a man who gave us 11 years, cost peanuts and made us £12million, you embarressed yourselves, and unfortunately you embarressed the fans who have a brain. That however is my opinion and fans are as entitled to theirs. Tony Morley, Stan Collymore, Graham Taylor, John Gregory and many more or stated that GB deserved a good reception. Maybe everybody in the game is wrong and the neanderthals who booed were right??Richard Dunne left Man City and let it be known he was unhappy at his treatment. Man City fans responded in a way I believe we should have responded to Barry. As for the game both teams played 442. Both teams had 2 wide men and 2 players in the middle. I can not remember a game with so much space in the middle of the park. Petrov, Dunne, Warnock, De Jong, Barry and Ireland all went on runs of over 50 yards without a tackle in site. Had either team set up with a 433 (451) formation I think they would have controlled the game and won the match. Ashley Young gets "injured" 5 times a game and as such goes missing for 15 minutes. He is plainly not suited to the wide role as part of a 442 formation. He tracked back brilliantly several times but overall his contribution was below the standards we would like. Cuellar will never make right back as long as I have a hole in my backside. Questions must be asked why we would buy a right back (Beye) as cover for Luke Young and then not use him when Young is unavailable. We have already lost one of our 4 centre halfs for several months, there is no logic in playing all three of them when one may be needed as cover at any given moment. As for the old chestnut on formation. Last night summed it up. We got a draw because both teams played the same fomation, but for such an open game it is a real worry that our best (only???)opportunities were from corners. These were Gabbi in the first couple of minutes, Dunnes goal and his header wide in the second half. We have now played 21 games using 442 since the start of last season and have managed just 20 goals and 4 wins in those 21 games. Our best performances, not just last season, but this season as well were playing 451. I fear a long hard winter if M'ON continues this stubborn streak. He has obviously adopted a 442 at all costs despite the proof that is failing for us. One final word on the support, because I know you all hate the constant reminders. Nearly 5000 empty seats???? So not only do we have no decency in remembering past players, we can't even sell our tickets. And the Holte can't even see the irony in singing "s**t support to the Man City fans. Fickle??? I am with O'Deary on that one.
voiceoftheholte
I think that match report sums up my feelings from the top of the Holte. The infantile booing and singing against Barry actually showed Villa in a bad light. So to the morons who sang vile songs to a man who gave us 11 years, cost peanuts and made us £12million, you embarressed yourselves, and unfortunately you embarressed the fans who have a brain. That however is my opinion and fans are as entitled to theirs. Tony Morley, Stan Collymore, Graham Taylor, John Gregory and many more or stated that GB deserved a good reception. Maybe everybody in the game is wrong and the neanderthals who booed were right??Richard Dunne left Man City and let it be known he was unhappy at his treatment. Man City fans responded in a way I believe we should have responded to Barry. As for the game both teams played 442. Both teams had 2 wide men and 2 players in the middle. I can not remember a game with so much space in the middle of the park. Petrov, Dunne, Warnock, De Jong, Barry and Ireland all went on runs of over 50 yards without a tackle in site. Had either team set up with a 433 (451) formation I think they would have controlled the game and won the match. Ashley Young gets "injured" 5 times a game and as such goes missing for 15 minutes. He is plainly not suited to the wide role as part of a 442 formation. He tracked back brilliantly several times but overall his contribution was below the standards we would like. Cuellar will never make right back as long as I have a hole in my backside. Questions must be asked why we would buy a right back (Beye) as cover for Luke Young and then not use him when Young is unavailable. We have already lost one of our 4 centre halfs for several months, there is no logic in playing all three of them when one may be needed as cover at any given moment. As for the old chestnut on formation. Last night summed it up. We got a draw because both teams played the same fomation, but for such an open game it is a real worry that our best (only???)opportunities were from corners. These were Gabbi in the first couple of minutes, Dunnes goal and his header wide in the second half. We have now played 21 games using 442 since the start of last season and have managed just 20 goals and 4 wins in those 21 games. Our best performances, not just last season, but this season as well were playing 451. I fear a long hard winter if M'ON continues this stubborn streak. He has obviously adopted a 442 at all costs despite the proof that is failing for us. One final word on the support, because I know you all hate the constant reminders. Nearly 5000 empty seats???? So not only do we have no decency in remembering past players, we can't even sell our tickets. And the Holte can't even see the irony in singing "s**t support to the Man City fans. Fickle??? I am with O'Deary on that one.
voiceoftheholte
voiceoftheholte spot on, the holte is constantly disgracing itself. the booing of barry was plain ignorant of the minority who chose to do so. We played very well without the killer edge that i beleive we lack in quality anyway. well done villa.
goodb_2
voiceoftheholte spot on, the holte is constantly disgracing itself. the booing of barry was plain ignorant of the minority who chose to do so. We played very well without the killer edge that i beleive we lack in quality anyway. well done villa.
goodb_2
You should of heard a crazy wench who sits behind me in L6 lower Holte that will live me a long time: "Barry you f*?king Judas B*st*rd, m*n*y grabbing c**ks*ck*r!!!" She had kids with her! I dont mind swearing but dear God!! UTV anyways, agree with everyone we should play 4-5-1, definately should of changed to that shortly into the second half
GUMBOAVFC
You should of heard a crazy wench who sits behind me in L6 lower Holte that will live me a long time: "Barry you f*?king Judas B*st*rd, m*n*y grabbing c**ks*ck*r!!!" She had kids with her! I dont mind swearing but dear God!! UTV anyways, agree with everyone we should play 4-5-1, definately should of changed to that shortly into the second half
GUMBOAVFC
Classy girl then gumbo?
voiceoftheholte
Classy girl then gumbo?
voiceoftheholte
I wonder what her reaction would have been if she were his wife, on the day he came home and said "wife darling, I have just turned down a £5million signing on fee and an extra £3million a year in wages for the next 5 years? Makes you wonder if these people have any brains at all doesn't it??
voiceoftheholte
I wonder what her reaction would have been if she were his wife, on the day he came home and said "wife darling, I have just turned down a £5million signing on fee and an extra £3million a year in wages for the next 5 years? Makes you wonder if these people have any brains at all doesn't it??
voiceoftheholte
goodb - I sit at the back of the upper holte and believe me it was no minority! As for the Sidwell question, he ran his wotsits off last night. i prefer 451 and am a big NRC fan but Sidders did the donkey work last night. Unfortunately neither he or Petrov could get forward. Thought the milner header in the second half summed up the night, he'd have scored any other game and Ash's delivery all night was pub league. Thanks to a solid defence (Collins was immense) I take heart from the fact that despite our main creative threat having their worst games for a long time we still matched a team that many see challenging for the top four.
AVbornandbred
goodb - I sit at the back of the upper holte and believe me it was no minority! As for the Sidwell question, he ran his wotsits off last night. i prefer 451 and am a big NRC fan but Sidders did the donkey work last night. Unfortunately neither he or Petrov could get forward. Thought the milner header in the second half summed up the night, he'd have scored any other game and Ash's delivery all night was pub league. Thanks to a solid defence (Collins was immense) I take heart from the fact that despite our main creative threat having their worst games for a long time we still matched a team that many see challenging for the top four.
AVbornandbred
Voice, I love the Villa and the fans in the majority but you get a fair few prats there. Her rants were ever present through the 85 mins she was there (she left early as she always does). Not the worst ive heard, when Heskey signed you should of heard the politically incorrect vocabulary another lump by me was shouting! At least on the away days theres fewer fickle fans!!!
GUMBOAVFC
Voice, I love the Villa and the fans in the majority but you get a fair few prats there. Her rants were ever present through the 85 mins she was there (she left early as she always does). Not the worst ive heard, when Heskey signed you should of heard the politically incorrect vocabulary another lump by me was shouting! At least on the away days theres fewer fickle fans!!!
GUMBOAVFC
KRS186 wtf was you watching? GB played rubbish. That was the worst iv ever seen him play tbh! Heskey is a waste of time, I still think he was a BAD BUY. Yesterday we played well, In my opinion we was the better side. We started well and ended well. Just abit gutted with a draw but BARRY WAS ****.
Blitz
KRS186 wtf was you watching? GB played rubbish. That was the worst iv ever seen him play tbh! Heskey is a waste of time, I still think he was a BAD BUY. Yesterday we played well, In my opinion we was the better side. We started well and ended well. Just abit gutted with a draw but BARRY WAS ****.
Blitz
Sidwell had a bad game.
Blitz
Sidwell had a bad game.
Blitz
gumbo that doesn't surprise me. She slags off an ex player then turns her back on the current ones with possibly the most important 5 minutes of the game to go. However she wasn't the only one. It is unbelievable the amount of people who turned their backs on the players and headed for the exits with 5 minutes to go.
voiceoftheholte
gumbo that doesn't surprise me. She slags off an ex player then turns her back on the current ones with possibly the most important 5 minutes of the game to go. However she wasn't the only one. It is unbelievable the amount of people who turned their backs on the players and headed for the exits with 5 minutes to go.
voiceoftheholte
Anyone hear MON congratulate the fans after the game? I think he liked the booing
PTP
Anyone hear MON congratulate the fans after the game? I think he liked the booing
PTP
not like you to have an opinion on the fans voiceoftheholte!? ;o))) Didn't like the booing last night, thought apart from that the atmosphere was far better than it has been this season.
The Fear
not like you to have an opinion on the fans voiceoftheholte!? ;o))) Didn't like the booing last night, thought apart from that the atmosphere was far better than it has been this season.
The Fear
lol fear. Atmosphere was better although the feeling behind it was ugly. I couldn't believe that some fans tried to sing the song about Adebayor that has similarities to the one that B-lose fans sung about Gabi. Somewhere there is a lack of class amongst some fans or am I missing something??
voiceoftheholte
lol fear. Atmosphere was better although the feeling behind it was ugly. I couldn't believe that some fans tried to sing the song about Adebayor that has similarities to the one that B-lose fans sung about Gabi. Somewhere there is a lack of class amongst some fans or am I missing something??
voiceoftheholte
yeah, that possible also has to do with where you sit, the Trinity wasn't really a hotbed of anything ugly until a few Man City mugs in the hospitality section stood up cheering and giving it large, they were soon told to shut up. Madness football really, we should be able to mix, but you just can't can you?!?!

No, can't argue on that mate, as you know I did the article on the Gabby song, maybe I'm just old fashioned but I can't abide the contorted faces of hatred, the w/nker signs all the time etc, live is too short! Didn't hear what they were singing about Barry to be honest, just the boo's and I still think that was way less than 50% (not that I can measure it really!) BUT obviously when so many do it, it sounds loud no doubt about it. All sounded very handbags at dawn to me, maybe in the Holte it was nastier/uglier.
The Fear
yeah, that possible also has to do with where you sit, the Trinity wasn't really a hotbed of anything ugly until a few Man City mugs in the hospitality section stood up cheering and giving it large, they were soon told to shut up. Madness football really, we should be able to mix, but you just can't can you?!?!

No, can't argue on that mate, as you know I did the article on the Gabby song, maybe I'm just old fashioned but I can't abide the contorted faces of hatred, the w/nker signs all the time etc, live is too short! Didn't hear what they were singing about Barry to be honest, just the boo's and I still think that was way less than 50% (not that I can measure it really!) BUT obviously when so many do it, it sounds loud no doubt about it. All sounded very handbags at dawn to me, maybe in the Holte it was nastier/uglier.
The Fear
Excellent report and summary.
Saurat
Excellent report and summary.
Saurat
I personally didn't boo, I tend to use my energy on cheering the villa boys, (but everyone is entitled to their opinion) but right after the final whistle Barry was clapping towards the holte and doug ellis stand and a good percentage clapped him back. Can I just say I thought all the back 4 played well, but for me thought Collins was terrific.
johnmurphy3112
I personally didn't boo, I tend to use my energy on cheering the villa boys, (but everyone is entitled to their opinion) but right after the final whistle Barry was clapping towards the holte and doug ellis stand and a good percentage clapped him back. Can I just say I thought all the back 4 played well, but for me thought Collins was terrific.
johnmurphy3112
Disgusting .. nearly put me off my cucumber sandwiches and cream tea .. It was the booing that gave this game the best atmosphere of the season
Doug4ever
Disgusting .. nearly put me off my cucumber sandwiches and cream tea .. It was the booing that gave this game the best atmosphere of the season
Doug4ever
Gareth was cak last night. And we DID defend too deep. Carew went missing again, Ash had an off night but was still a threat. Back 4 inc Carlos at RB were cracking. I think we miss Carlos's forward runs when he's at RB though. Milly & Stan rocked. Sideres so-so, Gabby is getting better and better forcing defenders off the ball - great stuff. Still think we need an additional striker NOT in the mould of Carew or Hesky. Imagine a 25 yr old JPA alongside Gabby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ooooooooo, I think I've just wet me pants!!!
ljkal
Gareth was cak last night. And we DID defend too deep. Carew went missing again, Ash had an off night but was still a threat. Back 4 inc Carlos at RB were cracking. I think we miss Carlos's forward runs when he's at RB though. Milly & Stan rocked. Sideres so-so, Gabby is getting better and better forcing defenders off the ball - great stuff. Still think we need an additional striker NOT in the mould of Carew or Hesky. Imagine a 25 yr old JPA alongside Gabby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ooooooooo, I think I've just wet me pants!!!
ljkal
Downing will give us the creative spark we need.
leftfoot
Downing will give us the creative spark we need.
leftfoot
What was the GB song? MMM by Abba? Talking of atmosphere, it was bloody horrible at The Cottage at the end of last year at the Villa end. I heard later Villa fans were fighting between themselves???!!! Really nasty and un-called for. If you can't handle yr pop on the train down to Euston, stick to Kaliber...
ljkal
What was the GB song? MMM by Abba? Talking of atmosphere, it was bloody horrible at The Cottage at the end of last year at the Villa end. I heard later Villa fans were fighting between themselves???!!! Really nasty and un-called for. If you can't handle yr pop on the train down to Euston, stick to Kaliber...
ljkal
 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Aston Villa Articles

Ron Vlaar Going NOWHERE - Concrete News (Monday September 1 2014)

Dreams Come True At Villa Park (Monday September 1 2014)

Man Of The Match - Villa v Hull (Monday September 1 2014)

Transfer Deadline Day Live Blog (Monday September 1 2014)

KEA Is Rejoining Feyenoord (Sunday August 31 2014)

Stats: Aston Villa v Hull (Sunday August 31 2014)

Archived Aston Villa Articles

List All Vital Villa Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

League Results (view all)

Latest Results
Aston Villa 2 - 1 Hull City
Aston Villa 0 - 0 Newcastle
Stoke 0 - 1 Aston Villa

League Table (view table)

Team P W D L GD Pts
1. Chelsea 3 3 0 0 +7 9
2. Swansea 3 3 0 0 +5 9
3. Aston Villa 3 2 1 0 +2 7
4. Man City 3 2 0 1 +3 6
5. Liverpool 3 2 0 1 +2 6
6. Spurs 3 2 0 1 +2 6
7. Arsenal 3 1 2 0 +1 5

Breaking League News

Coates Now a Black Cat Target.
» Sunderland : 01/09/2014 11:53:00
Boyd First In on Deadline Day!
» Burnley : 01/09/2014 11:52:00
Dudgeon Extension And Boyd Exits
» Hull City : 01/09/2014 11:50:00
Duffy Exit Confirmed
» Everton : 01/09/2014 11:37:00
After Alvarez, Defenders a Priority.
» Sunderland : 01/09/2014 11:30:00

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Villa Player Of Month (August)
Suggested By:  JP Fear
Guzan 6%
Cissokho 30%
Hutton 35%
Senderos 5%
Vlaar 5%
Delph 0%
Richardson 2%
Westwood 0%
Sanchez 0%
N'Zogbia 0%
Bent 0%
Grealish 0%
Agbonlahor 15%
Weimann 2%