Houllier/KevMac V Martin O'Neill (First 14 Games)
It is too early to say yet whether Houllier is better or worse than Martin O'Neill but considering that a few fans are starting to get on Gerard's back already I thought I would point out something fairly interesting and compare this years start compared to Martin O'Neills start in his first year.
Look at the stats below:
This season's first 14 games (Kevin MacDonald's 7 games + Houllier's 7 games) from all competitions:
The Fixtures: West Ham (H), Rapid Vienna (A), Newcastle (A), Rapid Vienna (H), Everton (H), Stoke (A), Bolton (H), Blackburn (H), Wolves (A), Spurs (A), Chelsea (H), Sunderland (A), Burnley (H), Birmingham (H).
Won - 5 (3 of which were won under Houllier)
Drawn - 4
Lost - 5 (Only 2 out of 5 losses were under Houllier)
Scored - 17
Conceded - 19 (14 of which were conceded whilst Kevin MacDonald took temporary charge)
Martin O'Neill's first 14 games in all competitions:
The Fixtures: Arsenal (A), Reading (H), Newcastle (H), West Ham (A), Watford (A), Scunthorpe (A), Charlton (H), Chelsea (A), Spurs (H), Fulham (H), Leicester (A), Liverpool (A), Blackburn (H), Chelsea (A).
Won - 6
Drawn - 6
Lost - 2
Scored - 19
Conceded - 16
Under MON by this stage of the season we were already out of the Carling Cup and only won 1 more game than we have this year despite the fixtures this year being more challenging than the start of the 2006/2007 season not to mention the league has generally become a lot stronger since 2006.
Also so far this year we have our third manager, adjusting to a new style of play and have yet another small squad but we are doing just as well as when MON first arrived.
But this is where it gets really interesting, after the first 14 games MON then went on a terrible period with Villa where his squad picked up just 3 wins in the next 21 games!
I'm more than confident Houllier can better that abysmal run!
The point to this article being that MON didn't exactly have the best season in his first 12 months at Villa so we can't be expecting miracles from Houllier working with Martin's squad after 7 games but when you look at it with the injuries we have and the fact we've lost Milner, I think we're doing very well!
And if this is Villa still adjusting to a new formation and becoming fitter and tactically more aware with a few arrivals coming in this January I have to admit I am looking forward to a great future under Houllier.
Time to push on though in the League Cup and climb the table.
Next up Fulham away.
This fixture in MON's first season was 1-1, lets hope Houllier can go one better.
Oh and can I just add one more fact .... Seven in a row! Seven in a rooooowwww!
We're unbeaten, seven times in a row!!!! UTV!!!
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