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A Change Is Needed At Villa

A Change Is Needed At Villa

McAllister Uses Youth As An Excuse + A Change Is Needed

Gary McAllister has sensationally used the youth academy products for Villa's failure to beat Birmingham.

Taken from the Official Villa Website McAllister said, 'There were a lot of young players in the side,' he added. 'They will learn from the experience of losing a derby match and they will be ready for the next one.'

This is completely ridiculous! Barry Bannan, Jonathon Hogg and Ciaran Clark (who is playing out of position) all played tonight in one of the most important Derby games this club has ever had and all three players were fantastic! 'They will be ready for the next one?' They were ready for this one!!

What have we learnt from Houllier's reign so far then?

1) James Collins and Richard Dunne at the back does not work! Last season it did work because having Cuellar (a centre-back) at right back meant he drifted inside helping out when we were defending because it was his natural instinct as a centre half. We can now finally see the reason why MON always played Cuellar at right back, because Collins and Dunne together are too weak!

2) Barry Bannan, Jonathon Hogg, Ciaran Clark, Nathan Delfouneso and Marc Albrighton are all fantastic players and deserve to be keeping their places in the team when the seniors are fit. Although having Clark go to centre back in place of Dunne and Petrov or NRC coming into midfield would be a sensible idea.

3) Ashley Young is NOT a central attacking midfielder! He is a natural winger! His game is speed, tricks and delivery. His strength is in one on one situations running at a full back. In the middle he will always be pushed off the ball too easily.

4) The formation 4-4-1-1 does not work. So far we have beaten a weaker Blackburn in the cup, a poor Wolves team (currently 19th) by 1 goal, only just beat Burnley in extra time by 1 goal and Blackpool (who made 10 changes) with a last minute winner, winning by one goal.

I am all for Houllier staying on but if he keeps playing Ashley Young in the middle, with Dunne and Collins at the back, keeping Cuellar on the bench when he is fit and always sticking to this formation then it is not a bright future for Villa! We are playing the 'stylish football' Houllier and the fans have wanted to see, but we are not a team that is ready for this style of play because we can't keep the ball for it to work. We are still a side built on counter-attacking so we should play like this until we can change the squad around. Play to our strengths until next season!

When they are fully fit Cuellar, Reo-Coker, Albrighton, Petrov and Heskey need to be starting more games for Villa and the Dunne and Collins partnership needs to be split up unless Cuellar goes to right back again giving them extra support. But blaming the kids is not on! Without them we wouldn't have gotten as far as we have so far this season, it's the seniors that need to get their act together (apart from Gabby, Downing to name a couple who are playing well).

Gerard Houllier, sort it out! Please, PLAY CARLOS CUELLAR!!!! He is our best defender and it is disgusting that even though he has won Man Of The Match in every performance he has made under Houllier he still won't play him when he is fit. The jury is now out and I hope you stay and improve the results Gerard (not the performances) because if things continue then soon the fans will make their feelings known. It's a results game, not how you play but the results you pick up.

But onto Anfield now and Up The Villa!


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

Date:Thursday December 2 2010
Time: 9:14AM


I imagine when they are fit they will be played...agree cuellar deserves a chance, although I feel he has to be played in his rightful position & not right back...think the youth are standing in & competing remarkably well in what is a difficult period & they will become better players for it & not one of them has let us down, in fact quite the opposite as I find a lot of the senior established pro's seem to be the ones not putting in the required performances...I also happen to agree about the formation!
02/12/2010 09:30:00
Its difficult fellow villans, but just hang in their for a while longer & I'm sure we will turn this around...GULP (famous last words)!!!
02/12/2010 09:32:00
astvil123, I'm not sure I agree on your assessment with Ash. For the last year and a half his delivery has been average, on top of that, ever since teams started doubling up on him he seemed, to me, to lose confidence in his ability to run at players the way he was when he first joined. Cuellar is a no brainer. Collins is an average player who gets by on work rate and Dunne is making mistake after mistake at the moment. The sad thing to me at the moment is our losing streak has co-incided with Albrighton being out. If Gabby is going to start at the moment, then let's see the Fonz up front. His movement in and around the box is very good for a player his age. Gabby was drifitng out wide last night, as he likes to do, and no one was really replacing him through the middle when he did. Play the pair of them and I truly believe the goals will come.
02/12/2010 09:39:00
i agree with the foration and Carlos being playedalot more. i fact of the matter is we can only play the younger ones as we have no squad do you really thing GH would play the kiddies if he had the whole senior squad avalible, But on the flip side im glad heis as he is doing somink that MON never did put his faith in the youth and thrown them into the deep end, there are so many posotives to take out of this for the young ones it will only get better for us. i bet you all now as soon as all players are fit and new signings in the Jan and we are winning games you people that moan about GH will eat your words. HAVE FAITH WE HAVE BEEN IN WORSE
Ted 369
02/12/2010 09:40:00
astvil123 I could not agree more and that is exactly what I said weeks ago. Downing is proving an excellent player for us and could be extremely influencial from the middle, maybe not to the extent of Milner but similar to the role Barry used to do. It's frustrating as we absolutely dominated that second half and we're playing the best passing football I've seen in a long time... but what's the point in saying that and not killing teams off every week
Valiant Villan™
02/12/2010 09:44:00
I must admit that watching the game on the box I couldn't understand why GH played the formation that he did. It was not working and if the disallowed, but good, goal had stood you would not have had a sniff. I wonder if he doesn't rate Cuellar because I have always thought that he was a strong part of your teams heart/backbone.
SFC Forever
02/12/2010 10:00:00
Christs sake, I can't even read that... We got done by a lucky blues side. How many times has that happened in reverse the last few years? This kind of ***** makes me want to smash my own face
02/12/2010 10:20:00
Since when has Cuellar been fit under Houllier? To my knowledge it was his first appearance on the bench last because he has just regained full fitness.
Bobby Norman
02/12/2010 10:33:00
Some really good points... I completely agree that Ash doesn't have a roll in the centre midfield. But at this point would you drop a fit downing or albrighton for him to play on the wing? I actually at this point wouldn't - teams know that if you double mark him his delivery becomes very poor. I think maybe our best setup might be Cuellar Clark Collins L.Young. Not going to be great going forward but it will be rock solid.
02/12/2010 10:33:00
A superb article.... Bang on the money. Dunne must be dropped... He is a total liability.
02/12/2010 12:17:00
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