Aston Villa - Europe Here We Come
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Europe Here We Come

Europe (or at least the top 8) here we come

I am a born pessimist for 90 minutes nearly every week, but I honestly believe without any new signings (or maybe just a left back) we can get back into Europe.

Look at the facts, we are only 6 points short of 7th place and 7th could get a UEFA cup place presuming the League & FA Cups are won by the Big 4, with an Arsenal v Chelsea League Cup final likely already.

We're playing below ourselves, we have been a bit unlucky (eg Bolton, Boro, Charlton) and we've played all the top teams away, we have already played Chelsea and Man Utd twice, we have a new right back (highly rated according to Man Utd fans) and we have Luke Moore, Martin Laursen and Thomas Sorenson all fit again.

The midfield with Gardner, Barry, Osbourne, Davis and McCann all playing nice football are in better shape than for a long time. What has let us down has been misfiring strikers, and weaknesses on both defensive flanks whenever teams run at us. It is not the youngsters that have let us down but Angel, Hughes, and Petrov.

I am more concerned we will miss a top 8 place because of new signings rather than without them. Buy in the Summer when the market is better unless there really is someone worth having - and don't persist with players (like Petrov) when they are not doing it - although we all obviously hope he will come good in the end.

Six points adrift, but most importantly we still have a good team spirit, there remains a positive feel, and we will now move forward. Don't start believing the league table, we are better than that and WE WILL PROVE IT.

Article by stennyvilla
The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday January 15 2007

Time: 10:59AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

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A lot of teams have gone down believing "we are better than that". That said I hope you're right.
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15/01/2007 11:11:00

stenny spot on, but I would suggest in our current position we need a run of four wins on the bounce to confirm our push for Europe. Watford, Newcastle, WHU and Reading although no easy games when you are on the run we are currently having... we should expect something of a return to unbeaten days.
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15/01/2007 11:29:00

I'd defend petrov at this stage... he has been carrying an injury for the last few weeks. Once he's fit again we'll see what he can do once more. Remember his debut?
The Usual Suspect
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15/01/2007 11:32:00

I am loosing any hopes theese days, as new signings are still not coming to us. Relegation battle calls...(without them)
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15/01/2007 11:33:00

I can not believe the doom and gloom. Why don't people actually look at the facts. We are on 26 points. Even after replacing the relegated clubs with the promoted ones, the exact same fixtures last season returned just 18 points. We had scored 16 goals and conceded 35. This season we are 8 points better off. Our goal difference is -4 not -19. So whilst it is important to return to winning ways we are doing significantly better than last season. It seems that a lot fans have little backbone and that the glass is always half empty. We have had a tough run of games but the only real diappointment over the last 6 weeks was the failure to take points (although we deserved them) against Bolton and Charlton. We said at the start of the season there would be many highs and many lows. That is football. What seperates the real fans from the doom and gloom ones that drag the club down is how we react to it. I for one will be down the ground on Saturday with my daughter singing my head off. Stennyvilla, I am with you. Europe is a definite possibility. However I will stick with my original pre season statement of anything above half way is a move in the right direction. To achieve more than this will be a bonus. UTV
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15/01/2007 11:41:00

What are you on? I always try to be optimistic but this run has been the worst I can remember, under any manager in the last 10 years. The team, despite their frailties are just not playing like a team. Even the simple things like movement-off-the-ball and being able to pass accurately are terrible for Premiership competition. Any half-decent team at present will tear us apart and we will be lucky to stay on level terms even with average teams. If MON can't bring in better quality he just has to decide his best team, and keep faith with it week-in, week-out. The time for experimentation must now be at an end.
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15/01/2007 11:45:00

5 points and no wins from the last 11 games is not form which will get us anywhere near Europe. We are now in the bottom 6 and although you would say Watford and Charlton are probably goners already, with Wigan probably favourites to join them, we badly need to win against Watford and Wet Spam or we will be involved in a relegation dogfight...and yes we need new players least 3...but 10 million quoted for Young is a joke. UTV SOTC
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15/01/2007 11:50:00

The constant misery is this clubs major disadvantage.Weve had a run of games like no other team in Europe.Weve had the most misfortune with injuries.Weve shown the kind of attitude that alot of teams in the bottom 3 need to show if they want to stay up.There are alot of fans who have been waiting to have a go at the team.The players worked a miracle for most of this season.Give them some credit .
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15/01/2007 12:06:00

Well chaps it's up to us to play our part and be that 12th Man.We have been away to all the big boys and only have Liverpool & Arsenal to come to us.To lose both your first and second choice keepers over the busiest time of the year is horrific luck and yet we are still just off the top ten.Let's make sure we play our part and if we get the signings great...lets not forget this is a year of foundation building!
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15/01/2007 12:09:00

This is total ****, im a villa fan through and through but whoever wrote this very optimistic article must have been on crack or something!! There are 45 points left up for grabs we will need to get 30 out of the 45 to get into europe, dont think so some how (sorry)
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15/01/2007 12:09:00

right on stenny, there are many positives. look down and you'll stay down. look up to at least 10th.
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15/01/2007 12:16:00

Europe is extreme optimism alright.But what have we got gain by making things harder.There are now people there who are genuinley trying to change things for the better.remember 97-98 season our form in the second half of that season was league winning.
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15/01/2007 12:18:00

Ill shut up after this.Last season we were on the points were on now thanks to a remarkable run over xmas where we got huge slices of fortune(an opener against Everton that Baros handled,A pen against the Baggies that never was)most games we were embarrasing even the ones we won.Everyone was bracing themselvs for the unthinkable this season.most games this season weve been good.There is light at the end of the tunnell this time round.
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15/01/2007 12:32:00

So let me get this right villacross. You are not happy that we are doing significantly better than last season? What am I on? I think that is a question you should be asking yourself, hopefully before you slit your wrists.
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15/01/2007 12:36:00

Villacross....we have injuries marring a run of coherent starting line ups....we have a side in total transition from being certain relegation fodder which is what every player had become used to - so we have alot of habits, internal rot, apathy to get rid of before we can sustain momentum and build for better places. I understand your frustration but you would do well to bide your time and be patient - after all we gave O'Leary years and O'Neill has been here months! Thank God we haven't bought Boulding again I say.
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15/01/2007 13:52:00

What would the fans rather the club do - either be like Chelsea & Blackburn and buy a few sucCessful seasons. Mortgage the club to find success until you struggle to find a couple of quid down the back of the settee like Leeds and Newcastle. Or finally go the way I'd prefer which is to bulit up the club from the bottom. So the stadium, the training facilities, the fans facilities, the Holte Hotel are all excellent. Then we can slowly build at team, bring through the youth and buy a few top signings along the way. This is the way that Liverpool, Arsenal and Man United have done it for years and years. ROME WAS NOT BUILT IN A DAY, SHANKLY DIDN'T BUILD LIVERPOOL IN 6 MONTHS AND FERGIE TOOK 3 YEARS NOT 6 MONTHS TO BULID MAN UNITED.
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15/01/2007 14:29:00

With the current squad, I just cant see it. Two or three more quality new arrivals before the month is out, then maybe, but still unlikely. New faces will take time to settle and blend in, and in addition to us winning consistently, the teams currently in the UEFA Cup positions have to show a drop in form. No, I'll still settle for a top ten finish. Lets take this one step at a time.
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15/01/2007 20:57:00

Of course, there's always the Inter-Toto should the club want to go that route, but I'm not sure that that's a good idea right now.
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02/03/2007 06:27:00


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