Apologies, this is going to be a very quick post as both Badger and me are away at present.
This is really about starting a new discussion ahead of tomorrow’s game.
Bill has stated his concerns and Holte has taken the diametrically opposite stance that we can win fielding eleven mannequins!
Stats wise – do I put too much store by stats – Villa have won the last two against Newcastle at Villa Park and are unbeaten in six (2W 4D) but those two wins are the only two wins in the last 16 games and the last time we had a run of seven games unbeaten against the barcodes was in the fifties!
Saint-Maximin, Almiron and Callum Wilson plus Willock – that’s a pretty useful line up which can destroy any defence on their day – so I’m not taking anything for granted.
Watkins is missing which is a problem as he stretches defences; Traore is also out with his hamstring and would have been useful as an impact sub. In other team news Luiz might start and the BBC is saying Sanson may be involved but there doesn’t seem to be anything coming out of VP on this.
Smith in the press conference said ‘I don’t know much about Watkins knee injury’. Why not? Surely he should know about it and understand it? Sound familiar?
It will be interesting to see who starts – Young instead of Targett and Bidace in place of El Ghazi – and who is on the bench from the U23’s.
It seems clear there’s a degree of disruption at VP so us losing tomorrow wouldn’t really surprise me.