Chelsea 3 – 0 Aston Villa is perhaps the most predictable scoreline you could have thought of from the weekend’s games. Villa’s defence has been too solid so far this season for there to have been a chance of Chelsea netting anywhere near the eight they inflicted upon us two years ago, but their multimillion pound attack and midfield were clearly going to be too good for Villa’s modestly-priced side. Here’s the Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Villa’s run-of-the-mill loss.
Villa actually defended relatively well for 50 minutes after handing the opening goal to Chelsea. It seemed as though a thrashing was on the cards after going a goal down six minutes in but Villa showed an impressive resilience to repel the home side.
There is no disgrace whatsoever in being beaten 3-0 at Stamford Bridge, particularly by this particular Chelsea side, which surely should win the league.
The main piece of good news to be taken from this game is that Villa are now halfway through their hideous run of fixtures against last season’s top five, and have so far taken three points which many will see as a bonus.
There was also a huge boost on Monday with Christian Benteke playing and scoring for the under-21s against Bolton Wanderers. Paul Lambert stated that he is considering bringing the Belgian back into the fold for the clash with champions Manchester City on Saturday evening. At face value this looks like great news. Villa desperately need an attacking threat again, and Benteke will undoubtedly provide that.
However, Lambert and co. have to make sure that he is fully ready for a return, as if he suffers any sort of recurrence of his injury Villa could find themselves stranded again for another lengthy period of time. Half an hour off the bench may well be a better idea that giving the striker the full 90. Whether he plays or not against City, the Christian Benteke return date is sooner rather than later though.
Joe Cole also made an encouraging scoring contribution to the development squad’s 3-0 win as he looks to reach full fitness and challenge for a place in the matchday squad. Meanwhile, Jack Grealish’s development is continuing and he is knocking on the door of a starting place in the first team really rather loudly.
Joe Cole is yet to feature in the league for Villa
[Click ‘Next’ for the Bad and the Ugly]