(Picture courtesy of the Daily Mirror)
I’m currently working in rural Eire.
It’s a lovely place, but the weather is incredibly changeable and it’s prone to power cuts.
Which is exactly what happened today. We were without electricity for about three hours
The phone network went down too and it meant I was only able to watch the first half of the game, unfortunately.
Hence I didn’t get to hear the result until about two hours after the final whistle. Time was then spent rapidly trying to find out what had happened.
The big talking point was obviously the disgraceful and cowardly punch by a Blues fan on Jack Grealish from behind, which if it had connected cleanly, could easily have resulted in a broken jaw.
I’m sure we all love the banter and rivalry. It’s a massive part of the game.
But for that to happen, well I’m sure there will be many a nose hanging their heads in shame today. Apart from the idiots who actually applauded the coward, that is.
As the official Villa statement says, this has crossed a red line and while I don’t see how you can blame the club, you’d have to expect that given this has set a precedent, that the club will receive a very severe punishment.
Just as they’re already in quite serious trouble too, as regards FFP.
Ultimately, the players and officials have to know they can walk on the pitch in the knowledge that they’re safe, it’s as simple as that.
What gets me, is this idiot is probably a massive Blues fan and has instantly been banned for life by the club, hence he’s punished himself as much as any custodial sentence he’s bound to receive.
I’d guess alcohol played a part here, which makes a mockery of the Sunday dinner kick off times.
Anyway, onto the game and what I saw wasn’t very good.
But I expected that sort of game and we did have a couple of chances and El Ghazi’s in particular, should have slotted home after Grealish’s nice snappy through ball.
And then everything went off about a minute before the half time whistle.
Which is where I’ve had to rely on the news.
Dean Smith lined the team up exactly as I thought he would from the off and it seems him bringing McGinn and Green on changed the game which led to us attacking more.
Hourihane hit the bar and Blues apparently had a decent penalty shout waved away, but the main thing is it was Grealish who shot from inside the box to give us the points. And it was somewhat fitting after the earlier incident.
Indeed, Jack has described today as the best day of his life, having appeared in his first Derby and scoring the winner as Captain.
That’s every Villa fan’s boyhood dream, isn’t it?
On a wider note, we move above Blues in the league and now stand ninth in the table, four points behind sixth place.
This was a decent away win and it’s another clean sheet.
While I’m still not convinced we can sneak our way into the play-offs, you just never know and there’s still hope if we can keep stringing wins together.
Grealish has shown us how dependent we are on him and fair play to the lad, it truly is his day today.
Well done Jack!