Writer: Mike Field
Date:Wednesday February 10 2010
You'd never guess we were playing Man United twice in quick succession would you, apparently ol Red Nose thinks we'll find it easy to get 4th place.
Speaking on the Express and Star Ferguson has claimed 'it's easy to see us getting fourth' and whilst I'm no cynic (well ok, I am....a big one) I can't but read this as an attempt to get our players carried away with success, think maybe the job is done, and to take their eyes off the ball.
Much in the way our attack did against Spurs if you will. So a real cynic would say why has he wasted his effort I suppose?
Anyhoo, it's not the first time Fergie has talked about our credentials for the Top 4 but let's face it, nobody it really expecting a result tonight, most eyes are already on the Carling Cup Final.
And if anybody in the camp gets carried away thinking about fourth place again, like last season, we are likely to blow it. We've done better so far without the fuss from the club, the overhyped PR (that last year was apparently the fault of high expectations of the fans) and we've been taking it match by match.
Whilst our form may have fluctuated wildly at points - mostly due to tirdness you could argue, we haven't see the glaring highs when we've been on a run, and neither have we seen the depressing lows after a bad result.
Taking it match by match, not getting carried away or letting a result fester has served us well - so I really can't see his 'praise' as being anything other than a mind game to relax the players and get them dreaming.
'There is a consistent vein about Villa, there are no dramatic changes with them.'
As for the fourth place battle, Fergie does concede there are other teams who would also 'find it easy' and whilst he's perfectly right, his praising the lads to high heaven and then taking it away with the other hand. If it's easy for everyone to get fourth place, then by default it's not easy for us to get there is it.
But if his aim to throw us off the ball, nobody will pay attention to the latter part of his sentence, the younger player - in so much as they are now - will only be taking in the 'great' Fergie thinks it's easy for us.
'It is very interesting, possibly the most competitive part of the league.'
Either that or I've giving him too much credit.
Date:Wednesday February 10 2010
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