Villa Park blues, one-dimensional counter-attacks and is it time for fresh blood?
It seems Andres Villas-Boas worked out Aston Villa in very much the same way as Brendan Rodgers and Alan Pardew had done earlier in the season at Villa Park. Does Lambert have a plan against predictability? We will find out soon enough against Everton on Saturday. In the mean time, without mentioning the name Kozák, what we learnt this week as Villa fans…
Ground-hog day at Villa Park
Liverpool, Newcastle, Spurs…Attending Villa Park at the moment has something of a ground-hog day feel to it for Villa fans, in that the same frustrations build up as Lambert’s men huff and puff to break opposition teams down. Is it time for something, or perhaps even someone new? Time for Helenius or Tonev?
No life beyond the counter attack?
When the counter works – it works, with three goals against Arsenal and Manchester City, but in general, Villa’s lack of attacking threat is clear as the team averages three shots on target per game, whilst enjoying a diminished share of possession with 41%. Fans frustrations contain the nagging annoyance that Villa failed to buy an attacking midfielder in the summer, exacerbated by the fact that Tonev is sitting on the sidelines, and the likes of Grealish and Carruthers are farmed out on loan.
Is it time to bring back Matthew Lowton?
Touted as a potential England right-back, Lowton was arguably Villa’s main playmaker last season, and he had a positive influence on the performances of Ashley Westwood and Andreas Weimann in particular. Lowton is a pass and move style full back who enjoys playing his way out of defence with clever triangles, rather than kicking the ball long.
Lowton’s pass and move style last season helped develop a growing partnership with Ashley Westwood and the team looked very attractive playing this way. It is perhaps not surprising that Westwood and Weimann’s performances have dropped as a result of Lowton being out of the team.
Release the Helenius!
And I’m not talking about pulling the Danes’ shorts down… The tall striker has frequently played in the position Gabby currently occupies in Villa’s line-up. It is time for Lambert to give Helenius a go in my opinion. I appreciate Gabby’s hard work, pace and strength but all players need to fear for their places, especially when Aston Villa have failed to score in their last two consecutive games. Having the opportunity to bring on Gabby and Weimann as impact subs may be no bad thing either. Helenius is also a goal scorer, and Villa need to score goals as they have now scored only 9 goals in 8 games. No goals, no fun.
A Belgian offers more threat than a Czech
It looks like I was right about that Czech striker…what’s his name again?
*This weeks column is taken from a bigger feature by Shelley which will be published later today and the last point was added as an in-joke…UTV