Preview - Or Me Gone Mad?!
Ok, hands up, I'm losing interest. I can't wait for this season to be over, then like a lot of fans, I've got to decide whether I'm going to renew my season ticket or find some other way to waste my money and be miserable. The Ellis and O'Leary double act (tweedle dee and tweedle dum as I so unlovingly call them) have driven thousands of fans away this season and if they remain next season, I can only see things getting worse, especially as there is so clearly little money for transfers in the summer.
Anyway, this game against Fulham is a crunch game. Aitkin has said the fans need to back the team - in other words don't chant for O'Leary's sacking - as he knows the importance of the game. Well, nice of him to point it out, after the useless displays this season, I don't think the six pointer situation of tomorrow has been lost on the fans.
With Fulham just below us in the league, a win for Villa will all but guarantee their safety. A loss and we might be in for an uncomfortable run in with Arsenal away (we rarely if ever win), two local derbies (anything can happen), Wigan away just two days after the Blues game, Man City (who have the hoodoo over us) and Liverpool away (we don't win at Anfield period!). Our final game might be the home banker we need as it is against Sunderland, but then again, football is a funny old game and they will be relaxed and so who knows!?
All doom and gloom? Maybe I am these days, but can anyone seriously say they have any faith in the way we have been playing? Has anyone REALLY enjoyed this season and its many humiliations? Do the fans enjoy listening to the non-media-friendly-O'Leary OR the sight of a very ill old man still struggling to make it to the games but still ruling the mighty Villa with an iron fist? Villa have a kids for a quid type promotion, it might just get the attendance over 30 000, but only just.
I must remember to take my knitting with me, give me something to do during the game. DJ, do you need a new hat to keep that shiny bonce warm?!! ;-p (Yes, I know, kettle and black).
Aston Villa Team News:
The defensive crisis goes on as Olof Mellberg misses the game with a hamstring. Aaron Hughes will be favourite to deputies. Delaney is still unfit so DLC should fill in on the right. Phillips and Angel return, but Milner, Jlloyd Samuel and Milan Baros are all out. Agbonlahor could be on the bench having impressed with a goal v Man City. I tell you what, I'd have put Hercules in the squad, he might not be very quick, but he is 100% Villa! I might take my boots to see if I can get a game. Mind you, what good kinky boots would do I don't know. (from): Sorensen, Taylor, De La Cruz, Hughes, Ridgewell, Bouma, Hendrie, McCann, Davis, Barry, Whittingham, Moore, Phillips, Angel, Agbonlahor, Jumper Jumper, Gardner.
Player to watch: Gareth Barry.
Some may boo him, but I think if he hadn't been on the form he has been this season, we would be going down. He is quality.
Fulham Team News:
I'll be honest, I'm not really interested, all I want is three points from Villa and as this preview is descending into something quite bizarre, I'll pass on Fulham and neatly side step the fact they played like a compact unit last week to beat Chelsea. Wayne Bridge, Antti Niemi and Papa Dapa Duper Diop are all out.
Player to watch: Boa Morte.
On his day he can be deadly.
Lee Mason, 1 match, 4 yellows.
Sky Sports predict 1-1, Mystic mug concurs. He has stopped polishing his balls now, he is more interested in predicting the next manager of Aston Villa and the potential date that Ellis will leave. At the moment he says 2309 as he is convinced that Ellis is in-fact Mr Burns from the Simpson's and that he will go on forever. As the Baggies might say, yam gorra laff.