So I’m back home from my jollies and feeling a bit down, to be honest. Perhaps not for the reasons you’d expect though. I usually have fleeting moments of sadness when returning from a holiday, but that’s all they are. I’m fully accepting that I have to get back to the grind and well, I’m fortunate in being able to say it won’t be long until the next holiday.
No, it wasn’t that at all.
I’ve had to insure the car (how can they justify my price more than doubling in 2 years?), tax it and file my accounts for Mr taxman. Not that I have ever worried about paying tax, but it all felt like a brutal assault on my pocket. Still, I’ll bet I’m not alone. There’s always someone after your dough, isn’t there?
Anyway, on to much more interesting things, ie football and I’ve been doing a bit of catching up.
So we’ve confirmed the signing of a right back, Kosta Nedeljkovic.
And handed him straight back to Red Star Belgrade. Hmm, I find that strange, as I’ve said previously. I think many of us think that a decent RB was the priority, as Cash has been meh and along with many, I’m just not happy with Konsa playing there. I still think the position is a weakness, but who am I to argue with what Emery wants?
And Dendonker has gone to Napoli on loan with an option to buy at £7.7 million.
I hope he does a good job for them and they take up the offer, as I struggle to see that we could get more for someone who has only been a squad filler and pair of legs for us. A terrible signing by Gerrard, which will mean we’ve lost a fortune on him. It’s not that I dislike the player and he’s always done okay for us, but he never struck me as good enough. Wolves really had our pants down there, I feel.
And then there’s the shock news that Klopp will be leaving Liverpool at the end of the season. Except it wasn’t really a shock though and I first heard rumours of this months ago.
I know it’s not Villa related, but it’s a big enough story to justify a mention, I feel.
I’ve rambled enough and it’s onto matters in hand.
We beat Chelsea earlier in the season, but I don’t think they’re the same proposition now. I watched quite a few parts of their games over the last couple of months and for a team that was not great, because they couldn’t score to save their lives, I think they’re improving and quite quickly.
Emery has said exactly the same and given that they are a team that couldn’t score, they have a couple of players who we will need to be wary of. The name Cole Palmer has been on many people’s lips and he’s done well, with eleven goals and seven assists.
Raheem Sterling’s playing well too and I watched the Blues against Fulham, where he rampaged down the left wing, putting some great crosses in, even though the strikers couldn’t get on the end of them. I predict a torrid time for whoever plays at RB.
Team news and Pau Torres, Lucas Digne and Jacob Ramsey are still out, as is Jhon Duran, who’s done his hamstring. Bertrand Traore is still at the AFCON.
Kaine Kesler-Hayden has been recalled and I believe has been promoted to the first team squad. Given that he was doing well at Plymouth and he hasn’t been punted out again, it would seem the manager will definitely give him a chance and I wonder if that might be tonight, for a few minutes at least?
Anyway, Chelsea have Malo Gusto and Christopher Nkunku back in training, but they’re not ready.
Reece James, Wesley Fofana and Marc Cucurella are all still injured and Nicolas Jackson is also still at the AFCON.
Prediction time then and it has a draw all over it, 1-1, I think and that’s what I’m going for at 90 minutes. There has to be a result though and if it goes to extra time, I can see them probably getting a late goal, although their Carabou cup stroll in the midweek might have taken it out of them. We can only hope. That said, I could see us getting a late goal too, so it makes things really difficult.
Oh, go on then. It’s always better to be positive, I guess.
2-1 to the Villa.
Am I bovvered? Well, yes I am, quite simply. I’m one of the dwindling few that still has massive regard for the FA cup. It’s quality Silverware and it would be great to have our name on it.