Writer: J P Fear
Date:Thursday February 2 2006
Got home to find that mother-in-law didn't want to go to the match on account of it being too cold. Having motorbiked home last night I can vouch for how cold it was but surely a chance to see the Champions and see what Villa could do against them? A scarf and some gloves would do the job wouldn't it?
Anyway without too much complaining I took her season ticket and was mighty glad I did. Complaints about lacking a cutting edge aside it was fantastic to see Villa compete with the results of Roman's spending and
in most areas beat them. As ever with Villa there was always that worry that we'd commit too many forward and be caught on the break but last night it seemed there was always someone there covering. In my opinion Chelsea had a very off night but that was in no small part due to the effort and work rate of the Villa team. I should imagine Jose and Roman will be looking at what they have spent and wondering where the money has gone, if that's the best they have to offer!
Nice to see a couple of late substitutions although I would have kept Phillips on and pushed him further forward to be honest. Still the substitutions paid off, with plaudits going to Delaney for his brilliant work in the build up to the equaliser. The Chelsea goal came against the run of play and really from a small mistake, but illustrated what quality delivery into the box can do. Villas by contrast was sometimes great sometimes poor, for all our possesion there was a distinct lack of
Two contentious penalty incidents, the first of which I missed will mark the game out. Jose has already put his 2p in but watching the highlights later Terry's handball deserved to see Villa going in at 1-1. The clumsy tackle by an otherwise bright and involved Jlloyd Samuel deserved a penalty as well. Perhaps Robben's felled tree act and the fact he'd not awarded the first half penalty to Villa disuaded Stiles from awarding Chelsea what would probably have been a killer blow. Mind you with Villa in the mood they were who's to bet against an otherwise relatively idle Sorenson making a save.
I was reminded of the League Cup 1/4 final from a couple of years ago where again Chelsea failed to impress, on that occasion Angel sealed the victory with a cracker. No such joy last night but still an enjoyable evening.
I've been to VP a record low (thus far) of 3 times this season. 6 goals for one against and 5 points. Not a bad showing, maybe I should make the effort to get down there more often.
Long may the cold spell continue :)
By Steve Pennycooke
Date:Thursday February 2 2006
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