If I take my positive and negative heads off, I just don’t know how to call this one.
Is it a six pointer or a must win, which can be season defining?
I’m not convinced it’s either really, as it seems to me to be too late for that sort of thinking.
Not that I want to dwell on negatives of any kind, for this game.
So if it’s neither of the above, it has to be about pride and bragging rights, which is exactly how I’m seeing it.
I’ve been browsing through the Villa news, as I always do and one of our fellow Villa supporting sites mentioned that we haven’t actually won at the Baggies’ ground in our last five attempts.
I nearly double checked that fact, but have no reason to doubt it, so didn’t.
Regardless, it surprised me, to say the least, as my recent memories of Villa-Albion encounters are very positive and we seem to have a very good record against them.
But the truth is, it made what immediately seems a tough game, look just a little more difficult.
West Brom aren’t really pulling up any trees, but they’re sat quite comfortably in 13th position in the league.
Their last six Prem games have seen them win 2, draw 3 and lose one.
While we’re on a comparative roll, in that we haven’t lost in four games, albeit two of them were against lesser competition.
Of course, I’m being very selective in saying that, but hey, it sounds good and I like it (the truth is we’ve won 1 in our last 6 in the Prem and I’m glossing over it).
So what are the main points to take from a comparison of the teams?
Albion don’t score many, but at the same time, as is typical of any Pulis team, they don’t concede many either.
While we don’t score many and concede far too much, through mostly stupid mistakes.
Which probably sums up what I’m going to say in conclusion.
In team news, Albion have Saido Berahino as a possible after a stomach bug (isn’t he almost certain to be gone soon?) and Ben Foster is also available after apparently being out all season up to now.
Chris Brunt, Darren Fletcher and Jonas Olsson are all doubts, while James Morrison is out for eight weeks.
It’s interesting to note there, that while I don’t rate any of those players massively, they all strike me as the dependable type, as an outsider.
What I’m trying to say there, I really don’t know; it’s just a thought.
As for us, Gabby seems to have a hip injury (for that, read two hopes of him playing) and Sanchez needs a fitness test.
Hutton, Traore and Amavi are all out, as we no doubt know.
The conclusion then and it’s a pure guess, but I suspect Albion will do the double over us, for the first time in 50 years.
That’s a statistic I find simply amazing and I’d never have thought it in a million years.
While it will strike another new low, I won’t hold it against the Villa, as I have the utmost respect for the Olbion.
They’re our proper local opposition, after all.
I’m going for a 1-1 as the best result, but more realistically, I think we’ll lose 2-1.
But if we could scrape a win, who knows how this season could end up?
This is exactly the sort of game we need to win, if we’re to retain any hope of staying up and as I’m fond of saying, you never know.
And we have been trying more, of late.
No, I’ve changed my mind.
We’ll lose 1-0 after we mess up and fail to break them down.
Like I said, I don’t know.
It’s in the lap of the Gods now.