Villa 0-0 Boro; We’re through but I wasn’t convinced.

It’s the result that counts, of course and quite simply we got it.
But while I’m elated that we’ve reached the final, it doesn’t necessarily mean I’m happy about the performance.

We started ok and then sat back deeper in the first half, which it seems many of us weren’t happy about.

The second half, we were also very cagey and I thought we were playing a risky game.
Johnstone had had a pretty good game and had hardly had to get his gloves warm, yet he somehow managed to handle outside his area and for me, should have been sent off.
This resulted in a free kick just outside the box, that Downing hit the bar with.
If that had gone in, lord knows what might have happened.

Don’t get me wrong. over the two legs, I think we were more the cleverer side.
And that’s down to experience.
Hutton was excellent again, as were Chester and Terry. How well do they combine?

But I’m listening to the after match chat and they’re saying Boro just didn’t do enough.
Given that they didn’t have a shot on target, I have to agree.

Boro just made too much running of the game for my liking, but I’d expect a different game against Fulham.

I didn’t mention Grealish yet, did I?

He’s really starting to look the part.

But what pleased me more than anything was that this team look like they’re fighting for each other.
And if that’s the case, we have every chance of anything.


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  1. Bum Bum May 15, 2018 at 10:16 pm .

    Miserable git! ๐Ÿ˜

  2. Steve Starrs May 15, 2018 at 10:41 pm .

    You are partly correct but remember that their keeper made three or 4 great saves tonight. We could easily have won that by two or more goals. It was a performance built on experience. Yes we’d have loved us to be more expansive but then Boro may have had more opportunities to score. We didn’t need to win tonight, they did so the tactics were spot on even though it made for a nervy watch. Fulham are a better footballing side but so are Wolves and we know what we did to them in March. UTV

  3. Tony Hill May 15, 2018 at 10:59 pm .

    I largely agree, but why Bruce doesn’t go for the jugular when it’s needed I don’t know. To me it’s as though he played for a 0-0, and bringing Whelan on with 10 mins to go seems to prove that he just wanted to protect a very slender lead form the 1st leg. Another thing is playing with 1 striker at home, it’s just unbelievable to me! Most of the time we had Grabban on his own in the box or nobody at all. I fear Fulham are really going to exploit Bruce’s tactics, and they really WILL go for the jugular!

    1. Sidforever May 16, 2018 at 6:58 am .

      We take each game on its merits. Last night as long as we did not loose we would go through. There was no need to play an expansive game. Why risk creating space for someone like Traore to run into? A job well done.

      Letโ€™s hope Fulham choke like they did against the blues, where if other results went their way they could have been promoted. But they lost!

      Come on you Villa boys. I donโ€™t care how we play as long as we win our match of the season.

  4. Bill Pearson May 16, 2018 at 7:53 am .

    That’s right Sid, 10 on target and Middlborogh 0 speaks for it self , I know its not pretty but that’s the game. Bruce got it right and Fulham another day 90 minutes away ain’t bad states.Is Nath still in bed? Nath I mean’t what I said like to hear your assesment of the game.

  5. Bum Bum May 16, 2018 at 11:30 am .

    Badger, I thought our performance was competent, functional and a success. Few teams globally can consistently play stunning football and win a high percentage of their games. Grinding out results seems to be the order of the day. Wenger tried his flair based game and didn’t really succeed. Liverpool can play great stuff but are vulnerable. ManU zzzzzz. I’m easily pleased, it’s the thrill of the win isn’t. A bit like horse racing.
    Certainly looking forward to the final though!

    1. Hitchens60 May 16, 2018 at 2:40 pm .

      We played Middlesbrough 4times in the League (3 against Pulis) and they failed to score in any one of them so I think it’s fair to say Bruce had the measure of Pulis. Whilst I felt edgy watching the game, the reality is only the one mix up which led to Downing hitting the bar (and Johnstone being fortunate not to miss the final – but then doesn’t Mike Dean owe us at least one decision?) came anywhere near creating a real goal scoring opportunity.

      We might criticise Bruce at times but it seems to me that ‘Boro fans have far more grounds to criticise Pulis who seemed incapable of changing their game plan when needed.

      Any one’s game on 26th and I’m more than happy for Fulham to be over confident.

      1. Bum Bum May 16, 2018 at 8:46 pm .

        Same here. It’s a final. A 50/50 chance of going up. We can do Fulham, no problem, just get the lads fired up!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Holte66 May 16, 2018 at 6:07 pm .

    People already saying Fulham will be promoted because Wembleys pitch will suit their passing game. They might be right but we have steam rolled Wolves who are a better passing team. Fact is our players and manager are more experienced for the big occasion. Players do freeze on the big day with 80,000 plus fans. We know Grealish can handle the pressure. Fulham failed against Blues like Sidforever mentioned when it came to the crunch. 26th May will be our day! UTV

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