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  1. langfordvilla
    langfordvilla May 26, 2015 at 9:36 am . Reply

    Morning all…..Happy Rotterdam day to all Villans!

  2. OriginalLondonLion
    OriginalLondonLion May 26, 2015 at 10:16 am . Reply

    Happy Rotterdam day to you too Langford! At 2am tomorrow I will probably be fast asleep, but I have on my desk my picture at 2 am on 27/5/82 holding the Cup at Elmdon airport – smiling, before I realised the team had just boarded the bus and left me with it.

    Adam I think you are starting this review a match too soon, one may become a hero, but right now neither of our regular keepers is good enough to keep us clear of the relegation fight.

  3. Dave.C
    Dave.C May 26, 2015 at 2:22 pm . Reply

    It’s become fashionable to slate Guzan on this site recently, a little unfairly I think. He must’ve been one of the busiest keepers in the Prem under Lambert’s reign, he seemed to constantly be having to pull off save after save as Villa’s play often led to the defence being under pressure. He’s obviously had a knock to his confidence with a couple of iffy displays and some people on here have turned on him like rabid dogs! Age wise, he’s still at his peak, and I think it would be a mistake to get rid of him, Given on the other hand is reaching the end of his career, he’s been great at times, but how many of those times are left. His performance against Southampton really worried me, he was awful, his lack of height and weakness at crosses have been really exposed. I hope that TS picks Guzan for the Final, but I don’t think he will.

    1. Badger123
      Badger123 May 26, 2015 at 5:23 pm . Reply

      I agree Dave, the criticism of Guzan has been unfair, imo.
      I said recently that he’s put in a lot of good performances and he’s just undergone a poor run of form.
      He’ll be back, but as you suggest, probably not in the cup final, as Sherwood said a couple of weeks back that Given will play.

      Adam, good idea for a series of posts mate.

  4. Andrew
    Andrew May 26, 2015 at 7:10 pm . Reply

    I’ll admit I slated Guzan a bit, but he’s much better than Given. Never rated or wanted Given. Given’s unlikely for the final with an injury which I think is good news, but I do feel bad as he’s been pretty good in the run up.

    GIDDYVILLAN May 26, 2015 at 7:27 pm . Reply

    I think givens more penalty box wise bar the Shane long goal when he was miles off the goal line probably had to get near to our defenders on the halfway line to give them instructions as they wouldn’t of heard him in the box.Guzan still a very good shot stopper.

  6. OriginalLondonLion
    OriginalLondonLion May 26, 2015 at 7:42 pm . Reply

    As perhaps the only blogger on here who disliked Guzan from the moment Friedel left, I can say I have not turned on him recently. What is good about him I can sum up easily, he is very athletic, and allied to his height it means he is very good against shots from distance even if he has to make a lot of ground.

    What I don’t like about him takes a lot longer. His kicking is poor – rarely combining distance and accuracy; his throwing is average. He does not command his box, or have command of his defence like Shilton or Buffon. Those aren’t fatal flaws but these are: he punches when he should catch, he has a known weakness low to his right, and he does not anticipate – meaning cover the attacker’s only possible or most likely placement. At his age I see no possibility of his being able to correct these flaws even with coaching. The league tables do not lie, Villa will never finish in the top half until we have a much better keeper.

  7. langfordvilla
    langfordvilla May 26, 2015 at 7:58 pm . Reply

    Very unfair on Guzan IMO….any knowledgeable football fan will tell you that a keepers job is far more difficult when a back 4 is constantly changed, and that applies to Villa more than anyone else this season. Its mainly his kicking that bothers me and that can easily be remedied with good coaching.

    Rotterdam day is almost over….enjoy it and look forward to Saturday!

  8. badger123
    badger123 May 26, 2015 at 9:13 pm . Reply

    Very true, OLL, you have been consistent in your criticism of Guzan and fair play for having that opinion.
    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think he’s the best; just not quite as bad as is made out.

    Agreed, he isn’t the best at commanding the box, but he’s a fair bit better than when he got bullied by Blackburn in that Semi. Perhaps that’s what taught him to punch, instead of catch?
    I think Langford has a fair point here in top goalies usually have the best defence too. And ours is inconsistent at best, imo.
    As for the weakness low to his right, indeed you pointed that out very well a few weeks/months back and I agree.
    I’d also add bad positioning for free kicks to the list, fwiw.
    But his biggest single fault is his distribution and particularly his kicking. I complained for a good while about this about 18 months ago.

    I guess the reason I’m trying to defend him is because I’m not convinced that replacing him is anywhere near the highest priority.
    He’s a very good shot stopper and has saved our defence a fair amount of embarrassment over the last couple of seasons, imo.
    I’m sure I remember him getting MOTM for about 5 games running not so long back, which means Sherwood has bigger fish to fry, for me.

  9. Dave.C
    Dave.C May 26, 2015 at 11:31 pm . Reply

    I think it is unfair of OLL to blame Guzan for Villa not finishing in the top half, the defence was shocking in the first half of Lamberts reign, Guzan must’ve seen more action than most Prem keepers in that period. I agree with Badger that TS has bigger fish to fry. On the subject of keepers punching and not catching, I always thought that was a weakness, but a while ago on Radio 5, an European keeper coach said that they always teach Keepers to punch the ball as far as possible from the ‘danger area’, usually to the sidelines. He thought that the English method of teaching keepers to catch was fraught with danger, e.g. a dropped catch or fumble could easily result in a goal. It kinda made sense and I look at European goalies in a different way now.

    1. OriginalLondonLion
      OriginalLondonLion May 27, 2015 at 12:57 am . Reply

      The key phrase in your post is “to the sidelines”. The fatal mistake is to punch the ball at right angles to the goal line, and that is where Guzan aims. If his punching took the ball over the bar or out towards the corner when there was no attacker there he would be OK. I hate to see a two fisted punch, if you can get both hands on the ball you should be catching it, when you can get only one hand to the ball then you punch.

      I know I am in a minority in rating the goalkeeper as more crucial than the defence, but not alone, the management of Real Madrid, Man Utd Chelsea and Bayern seem to think that way.

  10. Dave.C
    Dave.C May 27, 2015 at 1:17 am . Reply

    OLL, don’t get me wrong, I think it’s very important to have a very good keeper, and I guess it’s fair to say that Guzan is never going to be considered a great, I just think, like Badger that other areas of the squad need to be addressed first. Maybe Jed Steer might be the answer, Paul Lambert rated him very highly, we may be grateful to our ex boss for bringing him in one day!

  11. Bill Pearson
    Bill Pearson May 27, 2015 at 7:20 am . Reply

    Wow FIFA arrests, officials top of the tree involved, hope Platters one. Adam probably give Given a coaching job next year,

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