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Manchester Untied vs. Aston VIlla

Wembley Stadium

Sunday

1500GMT

On Sky

Aston Villa Cup Final Preview!

Possibly the greatest ever "outside of the shin" strike on goal started what became one of my best ever memories to date as an Aston Villa supporter.

Oh Dalian, son of Ron, why did you ever leave us?

Aston Villa have made it, all the way to Wembley for their first tournament final since the Peace Cup victory over Juventus. In more sensible terms, since the dismal defeat in the 2000 FA Cup match, the last of its kind at Wembley`s old incarnation.

Thousands of Villans will be taking to their cars/coaches/trains/horses/magic carpets or piggybacks on fringe squad players to London for a grand day out, and let us hope that lightning can strike twice, albeit not via Dean Saunders and Stan the man Petrov can lift the famous trophy once more.

It`s Villa
United
LEAGUE CUP FINAL! (Nobody cares Terry/Bridge, nor about your marriage Ashley)
Preview!

Vital Quotes:

It`s the kind of quote craziness you would naturally expect from such a momentous occasion. Everyone past, present and perhaps future have been discussing their views on the game and I`m not sure I could accurately cover However, naturally, we will crack on with the League Cup expert Martin O`Neill. The boss spoke to the official site, and still found time during a special occaision to be classic O`Neill:

"We are going to try and win the game - that would be lovely."

Yes, yes it would Martin. I`m glad you`ve noticed.

"Winning a trophy is obviously the ultimate. There's no getting away from that. It would be fantastic to do so.

"I hope getting to these stages of competitions will become a regular feature. It's not that easy but it's something the players are striving for.

"If you saw their performances recently, they are putting everything into the games. And they are playing very well. It's great to see. They are doing everything possible for this football club.

"I would just love if the scenario which is happening to us at this moment could become a regular February, March, April thing at this football club."


Villa captain Stiliyan Petrov, who should be fit for Sunday, has told his team-mates to enjoy the occaision. The dude that will clearly be lifting the League Cup trophy on Sunday again spoke to avfc.co.uk:

'I think the boys are really relaxed,' said the captain. 'Obviously they know the importance of the game.
'The boys are going to have time together before the game, they are going to relax and they are going to enjoy it.
'Manchester United will be tough but it is a one-off game and anything can happen."


An experienced cup winner having played for a Glasgow team (although we all know that Scottish titles don`t count for much,) he added:

"It will be a proud moment for me. A lot of good players have been through their careers and not had the chance to play in a final or to win things.

"It doesn't matter where you play - in every cup it is hard for teams to win something.

"I've won things in Bulgaria and Scotland. If I can win something in England, it will be really great."


Ok, so it will be lovely, and great. I can think of a couple of better ways of wording it but nevermind!

Now for a blast from the past. I`ve had a few to pick from, but I`ve gone for the man with the greatest hairdo in sport, with the exception of perhaps Brad Friedel and Jason Lee (it really was a pineapple you know!)

Tony Daley said of the chance to re-live Wembley history:

"The final was fantastic. It was incredible. We were the complete underdogs and went out there at Wembley with no fear.

"Big Ron made a couple of surprise inclusions on the day. He left out a few players who you thought might have been playing, like Ray Houghton and Dwight Yorke.

"I am still Villa through and through and in my opinion this season has been unbelievable. What Martin and his coaching staff have done is incredible. Martin has really turned the club around. There are superb players here now playing to their peak. I am so impressed with them.

"Villa are just awesome at the moment."


*****

Ok a brief word about Manchester United I believe it is required by Fear for some form of impartiality (COME ON VILLA!)

Well seemingly Sir Alex hasn`t said anything worthwhile yet, so here is Graham Taylor instead! From a BBC blog:

"If Rooney does start alone up front, then I would expect Ji-Sung Park and Antonio Valencia to provide some support going forward. Park is a manager's dream. When I saw him play against AC Milan, he was absolutely first class.

A lot of the work he does is the kind that can go unnoticed. When Milan had possession, he looked to mark Massimo Ambrosini. When United had the ball, he was free to go where he wanted.

Park does exactly what Ferguson asks for - and if he is needed to fulfil a hard-working role, then not many players are better than him. With Young and Downing looking to attack at every opportunity, he will have another chance to prove his worth on Sunday."


That`s enough talk of the losing finalists I think!

Manchester Untied Team News:

United are technically the home team, so it seems best to speak about them I guess. United are struggling with a few injuries and suspensions. Anderson and Ferdinand will miss out, as will Nani who is currently suspended after trying to murder Stan Petrov in the league fixture between United and Villa recently.

Ryan Giggs also has a broken arm having run into steely Steve Sidwell!

Player to watch: Shrek

Nobody can look at anything other than Shrek himself to cause a mischief. Preferably if perhaps someone can kick him, or sit on him, anything, it`d be brilliant!

Aston VIlla Team News:

A couple of dilemma`s aside, Villa have a reasonably full-strength side. The usual long-term absentee`s are around. Stan Petrov should be fit despite the fact he has been suffering from a virus.

The main issues I guess are who plays in goal, who plays right back and who plays upfront! The Friedel/Guzan, Cuellar/Young and Big/Bigger debates will rage all the way through to Sundays game. If I was a guessing man, I would er…well guess: Friedel, Warnock, Dunne, Collins, Cuellar, Young, Milner, Petrov, Downing, Heskey, Agbonlahor.

Player to watch: All 11

It has been an awfully long time since glory, COME ON VILLA BOYS YOU CAN DO IT!

Match Facts & Stats

I thought I would bring back a classic for such a big occasion, the sing-a-long version:



Villa are looking to go to within 1 win of becoming tied for the all time winningest League Cup winners. For both Manchester United and the winners, Sunday will be their 8th final appearance in the tournament.

Manchester United have won an awful lot more than Villa in recent years, however have never won the Inter-Toto Cup.

In your face Sir Alex!

Wembley Stadium can officially fit 90,000 supporters in for a game of football. On top of this they can also include 9 trillion prawn sandwiches.

Roy Keane isn`t a fan.

The last time the two clubs met in the final, it was notable in the absence of Peter Schmeichel, who was suspended. Rudolph later went on to play, and indeed score for Villa.

Kevin Richardson vied with Shaun Teale for Aston Villa "top tache" 1994, a feat that hasn`t been matched by a Villa squad member since.

Ref Watch:

I don`t think in all my time writing these previews I`ve ever described a referee as 'showy,` however Phil Dowd certainly is the most dramatic if you should search Google Images for him! Never afraid to pose him it up, Mr Dowd has 3.4 yellow cards a game! He regularly books at least 6 players!

Match Prediction:

It`s time for me to be serious and remind everyone of my dream. The score is 0-0, it`s the 89th minute and we`re heading for extra time and potentially penalties with a tiring squad. The ball bounces kindly 25 yards out, centre of goal and is rocketed past Van Der Sar by none other than Emile Heskey to win it.

1-0 Villa.

Next Fixtures:

Who cares, come the final whistle we`ll be too busy celebrating.

Well, that`s it folks. The talking from me has been done. We can all enjoy our Saturday of doing nothing in preparation for the greatest weekend in Villa for years.

UP THE VILLA!






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The Journalist

Writer: Murph Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday February 26 2010

Time: 4:11PM

Your Comments

another murph classic. 1-0 would do. Got a feeling we are going to win on penalties though - won't matter, I'll be dead from the stress before the final one goes in! lol
The Fear
another murph classic. 1-0 would do. Got a feeling we are going to win on penalties though - won't matter, I'll be dead from the stress before the final one goes in! lol
The Fear
I don't think they have won the peace cup either !!
sirdennis
Some things are written in the stars.... the cup is coming home! C'mon Villa!
bazzah
good luck lads from all at Vital Chelsea!
merlin
good luck lads from all at Vital Chelsea!
merlin
we're getting way ahead of ourselves and i love it! come on you villa boys! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!! :D
benji_starsky_avfc
I remember that Atkinson goal with so much joy too, I just posted on another thread that we were right behind the goal when he burst through, you could just see he was going to score, we were celebrating like mad before he even got that scuffed shot off, don't think we stopped for about 10 mins, great memories
ant1ant1
Villa, Cant Waitt! Be my first major Finall haha, Up the Villa!, match is also on bbc init? coz theirs no breaks etc :)
Tr1dent
Villa, Cant Waitt! Be my first major Finall haha, Up the Villa!, match is also on bbc init? coz theirs no breaks etc :)
Tr1dent
I went in '94 as an 18 year old and when we scored each of our 3 goals I turned around to celebrate with some older lady who was sat behind me. Each time burying my head in her ample bossom due to the steep slope of the stand. Happy days!!!
Adam Deuce
I went in '94 as an 18 year old and when we scored each of our 3 goals I turned around to celebrate with some older lady who was sat behind me. Each time burying my head in her ample bossom due to the steep slope of the stand. Happy days!!!
Adam Deuce
Friedel, L Young, Cuellar, Dunne, Warnock, Downing, Millner, Petrov, Young, Gabby, Heskey, Carew did nothing but score 2 penaltys. I never though id say this but heskey should start! So should L young he's been ace for us.
joe1206
Is it normal to be sick with nerves 3 days before the final?? OH please Villa dont ruin my weekend/life!! come on.
claretandbluearmy
Is it normal to be sick with nerves 3 days before the final?? OH please Villa dont ruin my weekend/life!! come on.
claretandbluearmy
I'll go 1 further: Friedel, Cuellar, Collins, Dunne, Warnock, A Young, Petrov, Milner, Downing, Heskey, Agbonlahor Guzan, L Young, Beye, Delph, Sidwell, Delfouneso, Carew SUBS TO BE MADE: Carew -> Heskey 65+mins Sidwell -> Downing 75+mins Only Carlos Cuellar/Luke Young at RB I'm not too sure about.
StuLinney
Why is there serious discussion going on in my match article?
murph
Why is there serious discussion going on in my match article?
murph
Dunny monster to score the winner (make sure it's in the right end Dunny). Stick it up the owed trafford red *****e villa, manchester is with you.....
tublu
Dunny monster to score the winner (make sure it's in the right end Dunny). Stick it up the owed trafford red *****e villa, manchester is with you.....
tublu
and now Sir Alex saying he may not include Rooney in the squad.
jimjim96
and now Sir Alex saying he may not include Rooney in the squad.
jimjim96
That's Sir Chewalot and his, oh so intelligent, mind games. I don't believe a word of 'I may not play Rooney'. You know Shrek is gagging to play and that will be enough for to get him on the pitch. I too went in '94 and cannot remember a thing except how quickly it went by. COME ON YOU VILLA BOYS!
Rawlie
im loving the friendly wishes for success i keep getting from different fans. Being at uni everybody seems to suport different teams and i have had wishes of success from soooo many different supporters. We are guna do it!!!!!!!!
overlooked_villan
im loving the friendly wishes for success i keep getting from different fans. Being at uni everybody seems to suport different teams and i have had wishes of success from soooo many different supporters. We are guna do it!!!!!!!!
overlooked_villan
 

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