Preston – Villa; Bring it on!

I’ve just read an interesting stat that says today’s game will be the first we’ve played against a lower half of the table team in nearly two months.
If that’s so, it just confirms my thinking that we’ve done pretty well recently.

It seems today’s game is about injuries as much as anything, with the Villa having four players, in Jack Grealish, Axel Tuanzebe, Neil Taylor and Henri Lansbury all out. Callum O’Hare is also expected to be unavailable.
That said, given that two of those were very unlikely to feature anyway, I don’t think that’s too bad.
While it shows how important Grealish and Tuanzebe are for us, I’d hardly call it a crisis, as our injury list seems to be being portrayed.

If you disagree with that, fair enough, but my point is that we’ve done ok without them.
To put things in perspective, Preston will be missing nine senior players, with Ben Davies, Callum Robinson, Brandon Barker, Sean Maguire, Josh Harrop and Billy Bodin and more, all unavailable.
That list definitely seems to have affected their form and they’ve struggled recently, with 2 wins, a draw and 3 defeats (including 2 at home) in their last six.
One of those wins was away to Forest, but it seems the Reds are on the verge of sacking Karanka, so that’s probably not saying much.

Which all in all, while I hate to count my chickens, makes this look like a definite win for us.
Of course you never know, but 3 points is the logical outcome and I just think that with our attack, we’ll just have too much for them to handle.
That’s becoming a bit of a re-curring theme lately, but I don’t care.
It makes a pleasant change to be on a roll of optimism.

Plus this is exactly the sort of game we have to win if we’re to prove our promotion credentials.

A prediction then and I think we’ll score more than 1.
2-1 to us, but I’ll take any win.

74 Comments

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  1. Badger123 December 29, 2018 at 4:55 pm .

    All over and given other results, that’s incredibly disappointing.

  2. Adam December 29, 2018 at 4:57 pm .

    More points dropped from winning position. Its why we are not going up automatically this year unfortunately. Play offs or nothing.

  3. Holte66 December 29, 2018 at 4:58 pm .

    Blew a lead again! This is what will cost us a play off place. I know there are fans who think Grealish is overrated but when we are under pressure he picks up the ball and draws fouls to break play up. We miss that most of all.

  4. VillaAwayInDiv3 December 29, 2018 at 4:59 pm .

    Its not a sticking plaster job in Jan…its a splint and full plaster for months…..

    1. Hitchens60 December 29, 2018 at 5:05 pm .

      Not sure I fully agree with that. We are definitely missing Grealish – which team in the Championship wouldn’t?

      What Grealish’ injury has demonstrated is that we lack options when it comes to a mid field play maker – it’s Grealish or nothing so we need to add one of those to the shopping list.

  5. nath December 29, 2018 at 4:59 pm .

    disappointing but they gave their all and missed chances towards the end. preston also contributed and will feel they should have won, so maybe a draw is fair. both teams ended the game in a slugfest but both couldnt find the winner

  6. Hitchens60 December 29, 2018 at 5:00 pm .

    Missed an opportunity today but still unbeaten. Just have to keep grinding out results.

    Only concern is that we have been drawing too many games. We need to find a run of wins.

  7. Pat 57 December 29, 2018 at 5:01 pm .

    Not exactly the resounding victory that I was hoping we’d end 2018 with. Still, depending on the Norwich-Derby result, we could end the year just 2 points from the play-offs. I would have considered that a real achievement for a new manager who’d inherited a team that played like they’d never met each other.

    I’m sure that Smith knows exactly what we need and, for the first time in yonks, I’m actually looking forward to the rest of the season.

    UTV

  8. Peter Grimley December 29, 2018 at 5:02 pm .

    Can we replace El Mohamedy now? His Xmas record is assist, penalty and goal – all for the benefit of the opposition – he’s cost us 3 points which would have been 5 but for Nyland’s save. With friends like that …….

  9. Holte66 December 29, 2018 at 5:06 pm .

    Do some players take their foot off the pedal when up against weaker teams. Let’s remember that Preston had a lot more out injured than we did. This was a huge wasted opportunity and I wouldn’t be surprised if QPR do to us what they did last season. Time for Smith and Terry to kick some arses.

  10. VillaAwayInDiv3 December 29, 2018 at 5:17 pm .

    we keep going back into Bruce mode …slow out of defence…….almost walking with about 10 touches before deciding to pass it out to the wing when one touch and then pass would do….then the bloke on the wing messes about and IF he decides to get a cross in it always goes to the other team….no where near ours.
    Just pathetic…we should not be satisfied with anything near this dross…..and then theres the defence !!!!!

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