Fulham 2 – 0 Villa; It’s not an “end of the world” result.

Truth time it is then and the reality is that I didn’t really expect to win this one.
Yes, I said I was confident on here, but I was telling the lads at work that I’d be very happy with the draw.
I think it stems from the criticism a while back, that the site was overly negative and me not wanting it to seem like that.
That said, my overall confidence is genuine and when we’ve been achieving results, well, you just can’t be negative, can you? There’s also no better time to be optimistic.

Anyway, the point of my admission is to say that I don’t believe this was a bad result.
Apart from the fact that our excellent run had to end sometime, it’s also no disgrace losing to a good Fulham side that have an excellent record at home.

Of course, it wasn’t a good result either, but what’s more important is how we bounce back from it.
In that sense, I think we’ll be ok.

What’s more disconcerting is that the performance was pretty disjointed.
There’s the valid excuse that we missed Grealish and Adomah, but that makes it a bit worrying that the team seems so reliant on them to make us creative.
Then again, losing two of your best players against a team performing very well, will always be a big problem and while Steve Bruce shuffled the team round to try and adapt, so it didn’t really work and he might have to look for another solution.

So what’s the point of this post?
The truth is I don’t really know and I’m just musing on the possibilities.

Much depends on how long both Grealish and Adomah are out, particularly together, as we could probably stand just one of them being out of the side.
Get at least one back in and things will be better.
But as it stands, both are looking doubtful for the Preston game, which will make that one another tough contest.

I’m not offering any thoughts as to what we should do to try to remedy things, as the manager is very much his own man and will do what he wants, regardless of what we think.
And I’ve no reason to doubt him anyway, as we’re still sat in a very decent position, as much as these latest injuries might make things immediately more difficult.

“Twists and turns”, I keep reminding myself.
It’s what makes the Championship such an interesting league.
And frankly, much better than the Prem, I’m finding more and more.


Page 5 of 5 1 3 4 5
  1. nath
    nath February 20, 2018 at 9:17 pm . Reply

    hutton playing like he does deserves a new contract

  2. nath
    nath February 20, 2018 at 9:19 pm . Reply

    as much as we played shit and been outplayed in this game we need 3 points somehow cant lose or draw this

  3. nath
    nath February 20, 2018 at 9:47 pm . Reply

    my final thoughts. rubbish
    without grealish we are ordinary. you ohare in but he is not gonna make a blind bit of difference, grealish is world class compared to the rest in this squad and youth squad. i will pray that grealish is back next game or more upset is due.

    got to have hutton as man of match. just for his effort his driving runs which should be embarrassment to out mids and forwards. a fullback who is playing on not his favoured side is our more dangerous player

  4. Tekkers48
    Tekkers48 February 20, 2018 at 9:54 pm . Reply

    Another point in the bag. Results tomorrow will determine how good it is to us. After a run of wins like we have had it was always coming (a few bad results). But we will hopefully have Grealish back for the weekend and we go again. Keep the faith. Still all to play for.

  5. Villain1
    Villain1 February 20, 2018 at 10:22 pm . Reply

    Disappointing but entirely predictable result, as soon as I saw the line up I knew we wouldn’t win. Instead of utilising the effective system we had and bringing in the right replacements (i.e. – Grabban, O’Hare /Lansbury) , we use the injuries as an excuse to go ultra negative.
    I fear we are on the cusp of another Bruce special winless run which will end our automatic hopes. We haven’t got much hope in the play offs, we’ve been battered and outplayed by Fulham, Cardiff and Derby at various this season already so whichever of those we’ll end up facing I wouldn’t fancy us at all.
    I know it all seems rather downbeat for a team that recently won 7 in a row, but realistically we all know that when we’ve come up against the better sides we’ve fallen short predominantly tactically and through team selection which I lay squarely at the blame of the management team.

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 February 20, 2018 at 10:52 pm . Reply

      Villain1 you do make good points but selectively choosing three matches to make your point does you a disservice. We haven’t fallen against all the better sides in the Championship. For instance, why not recognise that PNE have only lost one of their last 17 games and Fulham are all but unbeatable at Craven Cottage. We do not have some God given right to be perfect every game nor is our management team perfect.

      Of course we can criticise but I fear we are now on the cusp of another ‘crisis’ which doesn’t help the team.

      We all recognise Grealish is a class apart yet sometimes one would think reading the comments on here we should be able to magic up a replacement!

      Whilst the last two games / results are disappointing – any team in the Championship losing two of their best creative / attacking players would struggle.


  6. B6
    B6 February 20, 2018 at 10:29 pm . Reply

    Good to see the experts on here writing us off again. Still 14-15 games to go, 2 points off 2nd and it’s all over for us the way they go on.

    Fucking laughable.

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 February 20, 2018 at 10:53 pm . Reply

      Fair comment B6 – we’re at crisis point again!

  7. Benno
    Benno February 21, 2018 at 3:04 am . Reply

    Thought apart from bjarnasson our midfield was very poor. Jedinak miles off the pace and hourihane anonymous. BB is by far our best centre mid at the moment.

    Grealish is a massive loss for us but we have the likes of ohare or lansbury who can play that role too. We just looked disjointed today against another decent team.

    1. Bill Pearson
      Bill Pearson February 21, 2018 at 11:53 am . Reply

      I don’t see anyone writing us off , maybe giving their opinion yes, cause its not late unless something stupid happens. No over till the fat lady sings.

  8. nath
    nath February 21, 2018 at 6:30 am . Reply

    lansbury and ohare are nothing like grealish and YES in my opinion. both can play the role. but do it in their own style. lansbury has a knack of finding late runs onto a cross. ohare is not ready for the big time. he looks like a player with some inventions but having this ability and being able to influenece a game with it like grealish are two massive differences. grealish has had his ability since we can remember, but its only since the last recovery from injury that he has been able to transferee this to the footbll pitch on match days MORE regular,

    without grealish in the starting line up. i think that you have to change the system like they did last night. they tried to go longer and they managed to recover from a goal down. preston were better for longer periods of this game. if i were their manager i would be upset with a point.

    oh another quality of grealish is he knows how to pull the strings of his fellow teammates. he plays the right balls for that player without the need of dialogue.

    i thought hutton was best claret and blue by miles. we are a team of pass the buck without grealish. hutton took it to himself to try taking the game to them. he went on many foraging runs. was the best attacker in what he did in their half.

    1. Benno
      Benno February 22, 2018 at 3:46 am . Reply

      So you’re saying without Grealish we have to resort to playing long balls? We have other players in the squad that can be the link to the front man.

      Grealish is a cut above anyone in the championship, but just because he is out doesnt mean we stop playing football and go back to hoof ball like we saw earlier in the season.

  9. Adam
    Adam February 21, 2018 at 8:39 am . Reply

    Why not give them a proper chance to prove themselves? Im not being negative were in a fantastic position with the games left but its worrying without grealish and adomah Bruce was pretty much admitting defeat against Fulham before a ball was kicked and so so predictable when i saw the lineup for the Preston game. If i can see it then the opposition must be overjoyed and boost their confidence before a game. At least an unkown quanitity like ohare and hepburn murphy, teams wont know what to expect and that could play in to our hands. Gives us freshness and something different. In my opinion those 2 mentioned are ready they just need to learn their trade playing 1st team LEAGUE games not crappy cup games which are as useful as u23s.

    1. DSVilla
      DSVilla February 21, 2018 at 9:56 am . Reply

      We should at least have the option of O’Hare in particular to come off the bench. As far as I am aware Bruce wanted to keep O’Hare at the club rather than go out on loan. Why? He is one of those players that tries to influence play, rather than taking the safe option, and he has an eye for goal. If we don’t loan him or give him any time on the pitch for the first team when is he going to feature or be ready? Suppose we get promoted – what then? He’s hardly going to get a shot in the Prem if he isn’t given one at this level.

      It’s not over yet but we need to be braver as a team. If we can’t do that after 7 wins on the trot I don’t know when that will come. Adomah and Grealish are a big loss, but with the right attitude we could do a bit better with what we have in reserve.

      It’s not a crisis but we need to get back to winning ways asap.

  10. Holte 66
    Holte 66 February 21, 2018 at 5:58 pm . Reply

    I didn’t watch the game last night but by all accounts we struggled badly first half and improved slightly second half. A couple of villa fans I know who went up said pretty much the same thing. Keeper at fault for second game in a row, although I forgive him that for his previous performances. Bjarnasson struggled in Adomahs role but much better when switched to middle. Onomah was useless and should have gone off at half time instead of Hourihane. Grabban did well but Davis was poor from what I heard and Hutton was MOM for us. Tuanzebe offered little going forward which is why Elmo must start Saturday. General opinion is that most want Hepburn Murphy and O’Hare on bench to offer something different. It’s rubbish to say that they were poor against Posh in FA cup so they aren’t ready. From memory nine others were also poor in that game.

  11. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 February 21, 2018 at 6:28 pm . Reply

    Like Holte, I didn’t see the game but I understand that Snodgrass was ill and contributed little – so we played a game without any of, arguably, our three best attacking players. Add to that Onomah who, frankly, from what I’ve seen is worse than a wet rag and playing Bjarnasson wide and I’m not surprised we were poor.

    Bruce is on record as saying Grealish / Adomah unlikely to be fit for Saturday. He has to play Grabben wide left where I understand he’s comfortable playing and bring Bjarnasson back into central defensive mid and move Jedinak back to the bench. With Snodgrass playing wide right and Hogan up front it gives the team more fluidity and balance. I would be tempted to bring Lansbury back in to partner Hourihane and put O’Hare on the bench.

    But then what do I know?

    1. Bill Pearson
      Bill Pearson February 21, 2018 at 7:14 pm . Reply

      Onomah played the full 90 minutes against Preston, but his attitude and work-rate has been questioned by the fans on social media after the game, with many feeling that he could have shown more in the draw.

      His display has strengthened many supporters’ belief that Callum O’Hare should be getting a chance in the first-team ahead of the Spurs loanee. The 19-year-old has been in excellent form for the under-23s, and several fans feel that now is the time to give him an opportunity.

      Time will tell Hitch, fans have had enough of a player that holding a grudge on being at Villa.

  12. Holte 66
    Holte 66 February 21, 2018 at 6:30 pm . Reply

    Early days yet but Adomah and Grealish doubtful for the weekend. Snodgrass came off feeling unwell so hopefully he will be okay. We need to get back to winning ways against Wednesday so hopefully Bruce will be braver with his selection. If I see Onomah on team sheet then we must assume he is like Messi during training. Whelan will be picked as a pointless substitute again I dare say.

  13. Holte 66
    Holte 66 February 21, 2018 at 6:35 pm . Reply

    Sorry Hitch, I just repeated pretty much what you put. I agree with your thinking and it would be worth trying Lansbury and Bjarnasson in the middle. Definitely would make us more mobile.

  14. nath
    nath February 21, 2018 at 7:45 pm . Reply

    it looked to me that snodgrass took a hit, landed funny or something, because he looked groggy. might have been a shoulder or neck problem. i noticed him struggling a good 10 minutes before he left field

    i see some fans wanting murphy to get a run out. its another one i really don’t see happening. two reasons he only just back from a very long lay off. plus hes a striker, hogan is a striker and we play one up front. hogan is grafting his bollocks off, then we have grabban to fall back on. cant see the point of bringing murphy on with no supply line. plus hogan and grabban are both better this minute than murphy. who i also rate highly.

    we struggled last two games because we have lost our influential player. no shame in that. all teams would struggle to adapt. when you have such a good player making all the moves. its so hard to step out of the shadows and be a more important player. but thats what has to happen.

    jedi was disappointing to me. his passes are never expansive he just sits and pops off the ball sideways. westy used to do the same but he at least ran up and down. jedi stands like he has grown roots. he is hardly inspiring the troops

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 February 21, 2018 at 10:22 pm . Reply

      Nath – according to Bruce Snodgrass was feeling sick and it got worse during the first half so he couldn’t continue – may be it was as a result of the fall you described?

  15. nath
    nath February 21, 2018 at 8:03 pm . Reply

    looks like the poor showing was down to the pitch lol just reading the pitch forced us to go longer yesterday in second half. i am not sure about that i thought preston knocked it around one touch pretty well. they didnt look hindered as we did. us going long also started to affect preston. they were comfy against us first half. first 20 we enjoyed lots of ball but did little. we created 2 or 3 but rest of first half preston dominated. second half we went long and were more affective in breaching pne backline

  16. Bill Pearson
    Bill Pearson February 21, 2018 at 9:37 pm . Reply

    I read that few hours ago, didn’t say because to me its an excuse , there two teams playing both have the same elements, I’d sooner draw my own conclusion as to what the out come was. That would have been a better outcome if we had the other two players playing. I’m watching the out come onto days game Derby loosing Wolves winning Cardiff winning.

  17. Holte 66
    Holte 66 February 21, 2018 at 10:00 pm . Reply

    The pitch might not be to standard of previous seasons but it still looks decent enough. If it’s a bit bobbly then we should be more used to it than opposition teams. Will be interesting to see how a quality Wolves team cope with it in a few weeks.

  18. Bill Pearson
    Bill Pearson February 21, 2018 at 10:06 pm . Reply

    All drawn except Cardiff who won.

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 February 21, 2018 at 10:24 pm . Reply

      To me Cardiff and Fulham look the most likely to battle for 2nd – along with us of course!

  19. Owen
    Owen February 21, 2018 at 10:50 pm . Reply

    Easily catch Cardiff – 13 games left- on here I’ve read criticism for Bruce for having Whelan, an experienced head for the run in, even if just in the dressing room or off the bench – in the match day squad. Give me strength.

Right or Wrong? What do YOU think?

%d bloggers like this: