First there was doom and gloom, then came hope and the potential birth of a bright new dawn. If the season before was both dour and sour, Paul Lambert’s first season, never had a dull moment.
After a couple of ‘transitional seasons’ that has had the club going round in circles, hopefully, the season of 2012/13 will be one day remembered as the one that finally got Villa moving forward to something beautiful.
In the meantime, five reasons to be cheerful…
1. Villa’s away record. Even with a 8-0 loss thrown in, only six teams in the Premiership have earned more points away from home than Villa’s 21 points (equal with Everton).
It’s a record that provides a platform for a decent league finish, if you can get your home form right. Only the three relegated teams had a worse home record than Villa this season. It’s the simple reason for Villa’s struggles.
2. Vlaar has found his goal-scoring boots. When Villa signed the Dutch centre back, one of his mooted qualities was he had a track record of chipping in with four or five goals a season.
The hallmarks of any successful team is one that can score from all positions. While Vlaar hasn’t made the impact with his head from set plays, his two wonder strikes suggest next season, if he remains injury-free, he may contribute a goal quota to the team. The goal against Wigan was a beauty too.
3. Aston Villa relied on no one but themselves to survive. Don’t quite understand the over-the-top devotion to, and praise for Arsenal’s routine win over Wigan last week.
4. If Villa’s form from February is carried through to the new season, then we won’t have to worry about the lower end of the league table again.
Outside of the top seven this season, the league is relatively weak. Indeed, during the past few months, only the teams in the top seven have been capable of beating Villa. Progress in final league position should be a more drastic improvement next season, than from last. Mid-table minimum.
5. Support. Not many club’s fans can organise a party like the last day jamboree at Wigan. Support for Stan Petrov has been stellar all the way through the season, and all Villa supporters should take great credit for it.
It’s just a shame a few numbskulls who consider themselves Villa supporters, first mock Robbie Savage on his father’s death and then go about insulting their own player, Joe Bennett, leading him to close his twitter account (such abuse will only make players even more distant from supporters).
It’s a shame all of us can’t be as classy as the majority of Villans.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this column over the season, it was only actually created to lift spirits throughout the season, when things got dark and gloomy! It will now be on hiatus until the new season.
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