I’m still shaking my head at the seemingly naïve approach to the game that saw Villa fold 5-0 to Arsenal at the Emirates. I seen some beatings at the hands of the Gunners in my time, but not even the time I remember as a kid in 1983 when Tony Woodcock fired in five to give Arsenal a 6-2 win against Villa, was as hapless as this.
If the only thing you’ve got going for your team is your defence, whose improvement has been down to the fullbacks finally offering some solidity, why swap Cissokho for Richardson? Also, do you really want to be playing such a highline against perhaps the most deadly counter-attacking force in the league?
Last season, admittedly Villa rode their luck in the game at the Emirates and could have been 3-0 down at half-time, before they hit Arsenal with three sucker punches. It’s horses for courses and perhaps Lambert should have gone for three centre-backs with more pace up top?
Anyway, I’m not the manager, that’s somebody else’s job who gets paid millions because he’s meant to know what is best for Aston Villa on the pitch.
Anyway, while he’s still in office at Villa Park, the worrying thing is it can’t actually get worse. After two wins in the last 19 games (that’s half a season), it’s destination relegation.
With that in mind, there is still time to change things. Remember when John Gregory came in for a fading Brian Little? Villa were potentially limping into a relegation spot, but with just 11 games to go with the same players, Gregory won nine of the remaining games to volt Villa into Europe.
Certainly the current squad is under-performing in a similar matter.
While you ponder that fact, here’s five reasons to be cheerful as Aston Villa fans…
1. AVFC Luxury Goods
Forget Gucci, Luis Vuitton or Prada, if you want real expensive luxury goods that are rarer than diamonds in the UK right now, look no further than AVFC league goals. If you’ve witnessed one you’ve probably paid a small fortune, as this table demonstrates Villa’s goals are worth more than any other team’s.
2. Possession Kings
Pah. Last season Villa were mocked for their pathetic possession statistics in 90 minutes…
but this season Lambert certainly has shown those critics of his style of play. No one can call him a hoof merchant now, after Villa had more possession than Arsenal in their own backyard over the length of the game.
Don’t worry about the fact Villa beat Southampton away 3-2 with only 22% of possession, yet lost 5-0 against Arsenal despite having more possession than them. It’s a minor detail.
3. FA Cup Hot Shot
While Villa are struggling for goals in the league at least they have a real hotshot who’s been proving himself in the FA Cup. It’ll be very useful to have him in the ranks for the 5th round game against Leicester, as he’s scored more goals in the FA Cup than all his Villa teammates combined.
Errrr…hang on a minute…
Click ‘Next’ for the 4th and 5th reasons