As you would have noticed by Villa’s paltry 32 points, they need six points from the remaining games to match the club’s worst total for the season since the Premier League started in 1992. They’ll also probably need those six points to make sure that they will remain an ever-present Premier League club.
Considering the fundamental mistakes on show against Manchester City, they are certainly going about it in a bizarre fashion. Still, there’s five reasons to be cheerful as Aston Villa fans…
1. Champion Domination
Bar the opening 20 minutes or so, Villa were by far the better team, as the stats suggest. 55% possession made Villa the only team to have more possession than City at the Etihad in over six years. They also managed 13 shots to City’s 11. But of course, it counts for nothing if you don’t out score your opponent.
2. Midfield Goals
After Delph scored against Liverpool at Wembley, finally both Carlos Sanchez and Tom Cleverley joined the goal party from midfield, when they both scored their first goals for the club. Hopefully, it’ll give them bit a lift in confidence in the remaining games. Villa can’t simply rely on Mr Benteke for the final five games (including final) of the season, so it’s a big positive.
3. No Fear
Looking at how Villa have played in the last three games against Spurs, Liverpool and Manchester City, you wouldn’t be surprised if Villa won their last four league games. If they show the same endeavour and desire, they should be fine in the relegation battle and have a good chance in the FA Cup final.
But complacency and silly mistakes (like we saw at the Etihad), will see Villa get relegated. The relegation threat is very real, but if Villa supporters and the players tackle it head on, they should be fine. Three points against Everton would be a great start.
4. Own Hands
When Villa set off to Wembley to play Liverpool, they were six points above the relegation zone, since then, the teams fighting relegation have suddenly transformed and are winning in a worryingly frequent fashion. While Villa would slip into the relegation zone if Sunderland won their game-in-hand (although away at Arsenal), the fact Leicester and Sunderland play each other in the run-in means Villa’s survival is very much in their own hands. Other results don’t matter, if Villa take care of their own business.
5. Home comforts
Yes, we’ve been cr*p at home this season with only three wins (worst record in the league), but with Benteke on fire and the team playing with more conviction, I’d take having three of the remaining four games at Villa Park than the other way round. UTV