The Week In Villa (15)
Wednesday, 7th November
The U-19's got a much needed win in the NextGen series against PSV. Graham Burke and Michael Drennan got the goals in the 2-0 victory. We're now in with a good shout of making the next stage, the next and final game for us being Weds 28th against Sporting Lisbon.
Thursday, 8th November
17 year old Aoife Mannion declares that she is 'over the moon' at being selected as Villa Ladies captain. Being a teenage girl clearly doesn't stop the footballing clichés coming out in interviews!
Dougie Freedman says he wants to keep Stephen Warnock; fine by me.
Friday, 9th November
It's a day of previewing tomorrow's game against Man U. Inevitably it's mostly about our poor record. It has to end sometime, right?
Saturday, 10th November
Wrong. For long stages it looked like we might win, but I was never confident. It was Man U, we have a bad record, we lost. It is easy for me to point out the faults but I am trying to stay on a positive vibe so I will do what I can. For large parts the defence was excellent, once again Bannan and Westwood did a grand job in the middle of the park, Benteke was an unplayable beast and either side of him, Weimann and Gabby worked hard and did their jobs. Hopefully them goals will give the WeeMan a great boost.
Stephen Ireland was fine, long-term though I would not be amazed to see Bannan moved forward to his position and El Ahamadi partnering Westwood. Still, he has been a bit better and he is even trying to get stuck in. The fact is I don't think Ireland has anywhere near the talent that many Villa fans do, but as I have slagged him off on here plenty, fair is fair, and he's done fine over the last couple of games.
As for the 19th minute stuff; I have often said that I have never been able to get on the Man United hate train, I actually prefer them to the other top clubs… I've never hated Roy Keane, I don't hate Fergie (although I thoroughly enjoyed the picture of Fear behind him during the watch checking!) and both Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs are two of my favourite ever (non-Villa!) footballers. But I have always, always despised their 'fans', and absolutely nothing surprised me about it. Genuinely, the only surprise would have been them being respectful. I am not saying it was all of them - I am not suggesting that at all - but those that were disrespectful are just typical of that mentality.
On to our own fans, and I don't understand the booing of Ashley Young. I obviously understand why he is unpopular with his diving and all that jazz but he never let us down, his work rate was excellent, he never hid in games (cough cough, Stewart Downing, cough cough) and overall, he was an excellent servant who just happened to move to a bigger club like when he joined us from Watford. Yeah he's a bit of a pillock but to boo him? No, sorry, don't agree at all.
Sunday, 11th November
With reference to the above, fair play to the apology from the editor over at Man U's Vital page.
The ladies won 2-0 at Barnet, with Dani Petrovic and Kate Wilkinson grabbing the goals. Barnet finished the game with just 8 players - 2 were sent off in a ruck after the second goal and then another got a straight red for a violent challenge. Blimey.
Monday, 12th November
Marc Albrighton and Graham Burke scored as the U-21's beat Sunderland 2-1. Goalkeeper Craig Hill deserves a mention as reports generally suggest he kept our lead intact. Well done that man!
Tuesday, 13th November
I mentioned last week that we had Swedish youngster Khalid Abdo on trial for a week. He clearly has a lot of faith in his own ability, he suggested he wanted to move up from youth to reserves quite quickly, and then into the first team. Sadly, he then added that he would then like to a bigger club! We'll put it down to him being a stupid teenage lad…!