‘The players should pay to play in front of such a crowd.’

Order is restored in the Second City. It wasn’t pretty, in fact some of the game was bordering on tedious, until Prince Agbonlahor stepped up to do another job on the Blues. Small Heath certainly are now in a tricky situation – two points off Blackburn in the relegation zone. Villa play Rovers next….oh, the irony.

So with a victory over the Blues in the bag and only two games of this season left, here’s five reasons to be cheerful as Villa fans…

1.One Shot

It was very good news that it only takes one shot on target to beat the Blues. Phew! It wasn’t one for the purist, as both teams could only muster one shot on target each. As I mentioned to someone on Twitter, it was almost like a game of Russian Roulette. The first one to pull the trigger against their opponent won.

Luckily today there were several pitch invaders who tried to liven proceedings up. To be fair they were met with some rather impressive rugby tackles and sliding tackles by the stewards. Decent entertainment all round.

 

2. Gabby Time.

As soon, as Agbonlahor came on, you just knew he was going to score. Well, I did…

 

It was fate, although you could say it was also a case of no other Villa player was ever going to score!

Even more important, Agbonlahor’s introduction lifted the crowd and kept their intensity up. With a mixture of genuine and ironic cheering of him, his introduction had a much bigger effect on the match than you could have perhaps expected at first.

The Blues fans got uneasy, it doubled the volume of the Villa fans and obviously produced the winner.

It’s the least he could have done in the context of the last few seasons, but fair play to Gabby.

3. Win-win

Whether the Blues stay up or go down, it’s kind of a win-win situation. Obviously relegation means some easy pi** taking and a guaranteed season of laughing at their expense. While on the other hand, if they stay up, at least Villa will have a meaningful fixture next season at Villa Park with a proper atmosphere.

Having the Blues in the league does give it a bit more substance, because there’s not much else to cling to.

The quicker we get out of the league the better, but judging by this performance, which was typical of what we’ve been watching all season, it might not be so easy.

Bruce certainly needs to improve on this situation.

4. Atmosphere

Fans paying to watch the players? Surely they’ve got that the wrong way round based on today’s atmosphere? I know most of the enjoyment I got from paying close to £40 was from other people who had also paid to be there, rather than from those on the pitch who were paid to be there!

The players should pay to play in front of such a crowd like today. Pretty much most of the enjoyment of the derby at Villa Park was the crowd’s performance – from the excellently observed tribute to Ugo to dragging the team over the line and the celebrations that followed.

 

It’s good to see Villa Park in its full pomp with banners, flags and big vocal support.

Hopefully the team’s performance will improve next season to really get supporters going. After all, we deserve much better than what we’ve being subjected to on the pitch.

5. Taylor Report

We’ve praised him a couple of times on the MOMS podcast, but again Neil Taylor looked solid and got stuck into the Second City derby as if he was born in Birmingham. He’s certainly made us more solid at the back, in terms of completing the back four as a unit (all of which played well against the Blues).

At the moment, it would seem we got the better end of the Ayew deal with Swansea.

Taylor’s presence should allow Bruce to put a more attacking left-sided midfielder in the mix. Whether he does though, is another story.

The defence at this level is sorted…now Mr Bruce, can you sort the rest of the team out.

UTV

Go on treat yourself and listen to this:

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Well I cannot agree with ‘Arry about Gabby. Despite scoring and showing committment hopefully he won’t have another another year to do anything at Villa Park. Another £3.5m a goal. Hasn’t been any good for 7 years average of 4 goals a season. What lunatic gave him another contract at 3.5m a year? Thankfully they have all gone. As for Blues ‘Arry, if your true to form. I really fear that may have been our last ever derby. Relegation, bankruptcy, while you walk away with few million back to Sandbanks and some of the most valuable property in the world. Of course you won’t pay tax on it. Yes Gabby is a real drain on the club. I fear you will be a bigger drain on the blues, as you have been to other clubs. Hopefully we can help them by beating Blackburn. We need a strong blues to kick our asses.

  2. 1 goal all season is hardly contributing. If it wasn’t against Small Heath it wouldn’t be such a big deal.
    Gabby deserves the boos he gets and the cheer he got for scoring. Odds on him finishing this season with more bookings than goals????
    We all know he won’t keep it up, he hasn’t performed for the Villa for years. If he’s still with us next season and chips in with 15+ league goals then he leaves on a good note. I’d rather invest his wages in a younger player trying to breakthrough who might give us a return on the money but either way deserves a chance. Gabby had his and blew it, time and time again.

  3. Agree that it was a better experience with he full house, thank god we won as we always seem to lose the games where the extra 10,000 turn up and then don’t come back. I would love to have it like that more often than not, I’m not naive enough to think we will get 40,000 on Valentines night against Barnsley every year but if we could get somewhere near for the other games we might be moving in the right direction. How do we get those excitement levels for other games?? Play well and score would be a start I think.

  4. Arry said” Gabby? He’s done well today, he’s had 10 minutes, that’ll keep him happy for
    another year,won’t it? We can’t say Villa were good can we? Steve has a lot of work to do if that is the best they can do”.
    Oh yes, “and we didn’t deserve to lose”
    Well you did , Arry, hurry up back to Sandbanks to your loving missus.
    Well done Villa and Gabby, stuffed them yet again.

  5. Maybe some of the boo boys can give Gabby a break now. Yes he’s deserved some stick over the years, but if a players still got a valuable contribution to make and he’s delivering, encourage him! Nice job Gabby, hopefully you can keep it up!

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