I have to say I detest the whole idea of the play-offs.
The idea of a league is to see who does best over a prolonged period and those that finish highest are rewarded; simple.
And if three teams are to be promoted, that’s what it should be. The top three, even if that wouldn’t include us this season.
I just don’t see why a sixth placed team, say, ten points behind third should deserve to be promoted on the back of just three games.
The whole thing is just a money spinner and to my mind it makes a mockery of the whole thing.
That said, that’s my moan of the day out of the way and the truth is, it’s really good that we’re involved and it does extend the season a little.
Nerves are just beginning to set in, but only slightly as, having a pretty good record of late in calling results, totally based on my confidence, I really think we’ll beat Albion over two legs.
There’s always the worry that I’m being overconfident and that’s something the club will have to watch out for too, but my feeling is that although the tesco bags have the better record against us this season, it just strikes me they played us at our worst time.
Squad news and it’s good on our part, as everyone is fit, apart from Nyland and I’m not bothered about that.
As for Albion, Robson-Kanu is suspended after his red card last week. Chris Brunt will probably be ok, but Jake Livermore is a doubt.
I think we all know pretty much which side Dean Smith will play, but I have seen it suggested that Elphick should come back in to partner Mings at the back. I don’t think there’s any chance of that and surely it has to be Hause?
The only other issue for me is do we play Whelan or Hourihane?
I personally would go with Hourihane at home and maybe Whelan away if things go as we want tommorow, but it’s a nice problem for Smith to have. The reality is both might get game time tomorrow.
While I’m a bit nervous, I still feel able to make a prediction.
We have goals in us and hopefully Tammy Abraham will be feeling rested and bursting to go.
It’s a 2-1 win for us, although anything better would be brilliant.
Here’s hoping and now it’s literally Up the Villa!