After the mixed emotions of Aston Villa’s second double-derby week of 2015, there were more confused feelings on Saturday evening after the 3-2 defeat to Liverpool. As Tim Sherwood said after the match, if you score twice at Anfield then you hope to come away with a result (although perhaps not as much as at Leicester – 3-2 away defeats are sort of our thing now, aren’t they?) As it was we had to settle for Rudy Gestede doubling his goal tally for the season.
Here’s a look at the Good, the Bad and the Ugly of the loss.
Rudy Gestede may not be the most complete striker in the world, but my word he poses a threat inside opposing penalty boxes. The big man could feasibly have scored four after he had already headed narrowly wide from a Jordan Amavi cross inside the first seven minutes and sliced a superb chance wide when he was gifted a loose ball on the edge of Liverpool’s box.
His build-up play is pretty hit-and-miss, but he is so dangerous in the air and his first goal of the game displayed a predatory side to his game that we hadn’t seen before. You do get the feeling that if he is given the quality of service then he could rack up a pretty decent goal tally, and the supply was certainly (albeit belatedly) there on Saturday from Alan Hutton and Amavi.
Villa have scored 14 goals in nine games so far this season, which shows to me that hitting the back of the net may not be our biggest problem this season, despite the summer exit of the man who had scored almost half of our goals over the last couple of years.
Also worth a mention is Jack Grealish making a decision on his international future. Love it or hate it, the fact is that he is a kid whom the media love to write about, and the question of whether he would pick England or Ireland had become such a ridiculously overhyped saga that I think we can all agree that it is a good thing that it has been brought to an end.
Or so you would have thought, but the reported death threats that he has received from a tiny minority of Ireland fans make you question everything.
Let’s just take a moment to assess that: a footballer who has only recently stopped being a teenager is reportedly receiving death threats for choosing to play for the country of his birth rather than the country of his grandparents’ birth. People need to get a grip, there are an infinite amount of things more important to concern yourself with. Anyway, England gave you Ciaran Clark.
Click ‘next page’ for the Bad and Ugly of Villa’s week