Villa v Bolton Preview
August 13th 2005
Well, well. Here we go. No £20million spent - shock horror - and by my calculations, a squad smaller now than it was at the start of the season. But hey, whats in a player or two!? I'm determined to enjoy this season, last year it became a chore and I refuse to let this one do the same - he says knowing 5 minutes in the ranting and raving will begin.
A great deal rests on DOL this season, it is his 3rd season, he has bedded in, and he know needs to prove he can motivate his players, last season he failed in that respect and the fans won't stand for some of the 'I don't care less' style performances again. As for Ellis, well - least said soonest mended, I was certain he was going this summer, but a return in 2 weeks is the latest thread from the man.
Villa have only finished outside the top 10 twice in the Premiership, this season we are told - once again - that Europe is the aim. If we can keep Delaney, Laursen, Phillips and Berger fit, maybe we can push. A few injuries with a squad this size and we may well have gambled once too often.
Kevin Phillips says: 'Any centre-forward that signs for a new club, you're brought there to score goals. You want to play week in, week out, but ultimately you want to score goals. I want to walk off the pitch having scored the winning goal.'
DOL says 'we are aiming for Europe with our honest bunch of lads.'
Doug says: 'Wibble, wibble, wibble'.
Aston Villa Team News:
Hendrie, the pillock, is available this Saturday before he starts his 3 match ban for being sent off in a pre-season friendly v Tamworth. Laursen has won his fitness race, Delenay however is out. Berger is said to be 50/50 having suffered a thigh strain in pre-season. Villa from: Sorensen, Taylor, Hughes, Mellberg, Ridgewell, Laursen, Cahill, Samuel, Berger, Solano, McCann, Hendrie, Berson, Djemba-Djemba, Barry, Angel, Phillips, Moore.
Player to watch: Kevin Phillips
Give him the chances and he'll score 75% of them.
Bolton Wanderers Team News:
Bolton new boys this season include: El Hadji Diouf, Jared Borgetti, Ian Walker and Abdoulaye Faye. Defender Radhi Jaidi should start. Bruno N'Gotty begins a three-match suspension. Bolton from: Jaaskelainen, Hunt, Ben Haim, Jaidi, Gardner, Okocha, Speed, Campo, Giannakopoulos, Davies, Diouf, Nolan, Walker, Faye, Pedersen, Vaz Te, Kaku.
Player to watch: El Hadji Diouf
Mainly because if you sit in the front row you might get sprayed if he starts spitting at people again.
Match Facts & Stats
Aston Villa last season ended up 10th with 47 points.
Villa finished last season losing 3 in a row, they'll be looking at cementing their impressive home record in case they don't improve their dire away points tally for the past few seasons.
Bolton were 6th with 58 points last season.
Last season Aston Villa 1-1 Bolton Wanderers
(Hierro 26 og Speed 54)
Record in the premiership: Villa 6 wins, Bolton 3 wins, Draws 3
Record at Villa Park in Prem: Villa 3 wins, Bolton 1 win, Draws 2
Villa haven't lost in 5 games v Bolton, 2 wins and 3 draws being the results.
Mystic mug has put his suit case away and has started polishing his balls. He says a tough opening day fixture that could go either way but won't as Villa will come out the eventual victors. Home win. 2-1. Phillips to set his 20 goal haul started with a brace.
August 23rd 2005 (Man Utd)
August 27th 2005 BLACKBURN ROVERS
Septem 12th 2005 (West Ham) (Sky)