Villa – Derby; It’s all about goals isn’t it?

God, I’ve been dreading writing my thoughts on this one.
I’ve put it off and put it off, but now I’ve no choice, as I’m going to be working so will miss the game.

What to say?

Well I’d love to come on here with a massive burst of positivity and a strong gut feeling that we’re going to win 3-0 or similar.
But do any of us think that’s going to happen?

The title’s stupid really isn’t it?
Yet it sums up how quite easy the game is. The team that scores the most goals wins, it’s as simple as that.
And that’s why I’m struggling to see any positivity.

I’ll do some boring form stuff first and it’s scary.

Over the last ten games, we’re 23rd in the form table, with the 3rd worst goal difference.
Over the last six games, we’re 23rd in the form table, with the 2nd worst goal difference.
Take Rotherham, who for me are definite goners, out of the equation and it’s worse.

Fair enough, Kodjia hasn’t been here, but I’ll go into that in a mo.

Derby on the other hand, while not doing as well as I instinctively thought, have the following form;
Over the last ten games, they’re 18th in the form table, but their goal difference is 9 goals better.
Over the last six games, they’re 12th in the form table, but their goal difference is 11 goals better.

Bloody hell, I’m bored with that myself now.
Suffice to say, Derby are in the ascendancy and we’re in the proverbial.

From the OS;
Scott Hogan will be out for three-five weeks after spraining his ankle while fellow forwards Rushian Hepburn-Murphy and Gabriel Agbonlahor are still two weeks away from being available.

Basically it’s getting worse isn’t it?
Where are the goals going to come from, seeing as Kodjia is our only fit striker?
The same Kodjia, who many berate for being too greedy.

Because the midfield don’t look remotely like providing them, maybe Adomah apart.

So being realistic, it’s looking unlikely we’ll score, as we are massively reliant on Kodjia.

Ah, I’ll tell you what, I’m seriously struggling to carry on here.

Tomorrow is going to be about damage limitation, it’s as simple as that.
We don’t score enough, have one fit striker and concede far too many stupid goals, because of a piss-poor defence.
And we’re looking at Samba, who couldn’t cut it in Greece? You think our current defenders are slow?

Brolly man will be chomping at the bit.
Yet some are expecting 6-7 points from our next 3 games?
I seriously think Rotherhan might do us.

If we’re lucky.
I think I’m going to be glad I can’t watch it.


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  1. Tekkers48
    Tekkers48 February 25, 2017 at 5:00 pm . Reply

    That’s what was needed. An ugly win. You can’t argue that they gave their all for the shirt and I’ll forgive Bacuna for the sending off. Frustration boiled over . It showed he cares. We have claimed on here for a long time that we want to see all put in a shift and they did from what I seen. Lots of work to be done but let this be the start. No more false dawns.

  2. William Pearson
    William Pearson February 25, 2017 at 5:09 pm . Reply

    Didn’t like the comments that Bacuna went head to head or nose to nose, his body connected to to lineman and he was frightened by it. Bacuna was right in saying he had that decision wrong.still a win is a win and was needed, Bruce made a sigh of relief at the end, bet he was gone if We didn’t win this.

    1. Hitchens 60
      Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 5:13 pm . Reply

      Can’t really excuse Bacuna but I suppose it’s understandable given our recent run and that passions / emotions are running high. Just shows that the officials need to understand how players are feeling when they give poor decisions.

    2. OohAhPaulMcGrath
      OohAhPaulMcGrath February 25, 2017 at 5:57 pm . Reply

      Don’t criticise Bacuna he’s a champions league player don’t you know 😄

  3. nath
    nath February 25, 2017 at 5:13 pm . Reply

    every player for villa gave their all, bruce was awesome barking orders all game prowling his tech box. this win was needed. was always going to be a alamo performance, well done for never giving in and giving your all 🙂

  4. B6
    B6 February 25, 2017 at 5:16 pm . Reply

    Can’t see jv making an appearance…..he’s most likely sulking somewhere in a pub in Small Heath, bless him.

    1. Hitchens 60
      Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 5:23 pm . Reply

      Nah – he’ll still find a negative about Bruce from somewhere 🙂

  5. originallondonlion
    originallondonlion February 25, 2017 at 5:24 pm . Reply

    Well done the lads. Right tactics, make sure there are no gaps between keeper and back four and be difficult to beat. Good performance from Johnstone too.

    1. OohAhPaulMcGrath
      OohAhPaulMcGrath February 25, 2017 at 5:32 pm . Reply

      Can’t believe we actually defended a one goal lead and didn’t make our usual unforced error. I must be dreaming

    2. Hitchens 60
      Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 5:39 pm . Reply

      That’s encouraging OLL – thought Johnstone did pretty well against Newcastle too.

      1. OohAhPaulMcGrath
        OohAhPaulMcGrath February 25, 2017 at 5:43 pm . Reply

        Just seen highlights on sky app didn’t know Bacuna got set off what an idiot. We made some stupid defensive errors again but just got away with it this time could easily be a draw

    3. OohAhPaulMcGrath
      OohAhPaulMcGrath February 25, 2017 at 5:44 pm . Reply

      Just seen highlights defence made some stupid errors towards end but we just got away with it this time. All our poor results have been self inflicted why do they keep making the same errors every week it’s pathetic

      1. Andrew
        Andrew February 25, 2017 at 5:58 pm . Reply

        Poor management… Which is now going to be praised heavily for one incredibly fortunate win.

        1. Hitchens 60
          Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 6:10 pm . Reply

          Are you JV in disguise 🙂

        2. OohAhPaulMcGrath
          OohAhPaulMcGrath February 25, 2017 at 7:05 pm . Reply

          Exactly this win guarantees we are stuck with Bruce till next season as unlikely to go down now and won’t go up either. Can’t believe with 13 games left we are 20 points of a top 6 spot. We can start looking at all those stupid errors and leads we’ve thrown away. We should easily have had another 15-20 points in the bag it’s a joke

  6. marvin
    marvin February 25, 2017 at 5:29 pm . Reply

    Now if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. Hopefully the squad can build on it in the coming games and we can create some consistency before the end of the season.

  7. Andrew
    Andrew February 25, 2017 at 5:57 pm . Reply

    “Not broke, don’t fix it”… We got incredibly fortunate in that second half. We were very poor. We definitely need to fix that.

    1. marvin
      marvin February 25, 2017 at 6:11 pm . Reply

      Poor without a doubt, but a result nonetheless. So after our first win in weeks lets hope Bruce doesn’t switch formations and make another 4-5 changes on Tuesday.

      1. Andrew
        Andrew February 25, 2017 at 7:13 pm . Reply

        So we get a goal and then try to defend the entire second half without moving out of our own half once? I’d rather we actually went for it and not get incredibly lucky not too concede.

        1. marvin
          marvin February 25, 2017 at 7:39 pm . Reply

          Wouldn’t we all, maybe in time, but sometimes, like now, we just need luck. Right now the players we have barely know one another, are inexperienced, and/or injured. So it’s hard to know what else Bruce could have done today in terms of his selection.

          And before someone says Grealish, what has he done to prove he is the player to win a game, even change a game this season. If anything Grealish has proven he is not the player we all thought he could be, so who could have Bruce added – Kozak? An injured Gabby or Hepburn-Murphy? Hutton?

          1. Andrew
            Andrew February 25, 2017 at 8:11 pm . Reply

            Shouldn’t Bruce be picking players who don’t need to come in and take 10 games to get to know someone before they play well? Take Hourihane for example, he’s been poor since he’s joined. He should also know his team and his signings, how they play, and the tactics he was going to use for them. Seems much like most of our managers recently. Was buying players just to buy, not buying players to suit a system. If we’re going to play defensively then just say that, don’t try to blame the players for sucking and don’t try to claim you’re going to play attacking football when you’re not. Also buy players that suit that system. The players he bought do not. Basel play quick attacking football, as did Iceland, Bjarnason isn’t going to defend constantly. We also shouldn’t have to rely on one player to win us games.

          2. jvillan
            jvillan February 25, 2017 at 8:44 pm . Reply

            birr has played in 4/5 positions all ready, we sign a striker yet bruce only discovers kodja wont play in a 2 man attack,bacuna better performances came in middle of midfield when bruce had decent run yet today first game he got back in there,lansby and houirane similar types of player yet bruce plays both at same time
            problem is couple wins bruce will be god, signs another shed load players, things get of to bad start and all hell will break out
            need a manager of the now not 20 years ago

          3. OohAhPaulMcGrath
            OohAhPaulMcGrath February 26, 2017 at 12:13 am . Reply

            Apart from when Grealish was awesome in semi final v Liverpool a couple of years ago and one first half v Leicester last season IV yet to see him play anywhere near that level again. His head will never be right for him to get to the next level imo. Yes he has bags of skill etc but lacks discipline, hard work, willingness to succeed etc. Like Collymore

        2. OohAhPaulMcGrath
          OohAhPaulMcGrath February 26, 2017 at 12:16 am . Reply

          This is the Bruce way though. Bruce has always been an ultra defensive manager defend like crazy and hope to nick one then have what we hold. Bit like Mourinho but Mourinho does it with a more talented bunch of players being the chequebook manager that he is. If he was at Villa he would be getting very similar results as Bruce imo.

  8. Hitchens 60
    Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 6:44 pm . Reply

    There is one consistent on here – when we win we are lucky and when we lose we are doubly crap because the other side is either poor or didn’t get out of ‘first gear’. So it’s not that we need to win, we have to play brilliant football as well or else the win is meaningless?

    We are like any other side in the Championship scrapping for points any way we can.

    1. OohAhPaulMcGrath
      OohAhPaulMcGrath February 25, 2017 at 7:06 pm . Reply

      Usually it’s because we are lucky when we win as we gave opposition plenty of chances to equalise but we’re lucky they never took them.

    2. Andrew
      Andrew February 25, 2017 at 7:11 pm . Reply

      No one even insinuated the result is meaningless. Fans are very good at putting words into other fans mouths, when clearly that’s not what anyone said.

      We were garbage in the second half, we were INCREDIBLY FORTUNATE to win that game. They could’ve easily put a couple past us. That’s not how we should be playing.

  9. jvillan
    jvillan February 25, 2017 at 6:48 pm . Reply

    why dont you go and suck bruce off right and take hitch with you,we beat derby 1 0 by skin of our teeth and all is great
    please watch the game brfore commenting on it

    1. Hitchens 60
      Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 6:58 pm . Reply


      1. jvillan
        jvillan February 25, 2017 at 7:02 pm . Reply

        its pathetic that you b6 and giddy cannot post with using my name

        1. Hitchens 60
          Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 7:08 pm . Reply

          Grow up JV – that is by far the most stupid thing you have put in here.

          1. Andrew
            Andrew February 25, 2017 at 7:12 pm . Reply

            Seeing you called me JV in disguise, and you do often bring him up, he’s not wrong.

          2. jvillan
            jvillan February 25, 2017 at 7:17 pm . Reply

            its was mentioned by a few other poster over xmas and badger denied it
            as i say carry on with bringing my name in and it shows i am right in what i say,
            30 percent possession at home again play out last 15 m with 1 attacker only to sub him as well bruce is a fucking genius amazing over 20 years managing no half decent club wanted him , we are a complete shambles nearly as bad as lerner last few years but at least they where in pl not dogshite league in now
            people celebrating beating burton qpr and derby today

          3. Hitchens 60
            Hitchens 60 February 25, 2017 at 7:41 pm . Reply

            OK JV – you’re right and wow betide anyone that has a different opinion or tries to have a bit of banter. I apologise and bow to your greater knowledge.

            I also apologise for having the temerity to actually celebrate a Villa win – sack cloth and ashes for me henceforth.

    2. B6
      B6 February 25, 2017 at 7:18 pm . Reply

      I ain’t going to lower myself to petty insults jv, I’m better than that so if you’re waiting for my come back ask your mum.

      1. Guest
        Guest February 26, 2017 at 11:47 pm . Reply

        Can’t believe 5 idiots on here clicked ‘like’ on that insult, you should be really carefully when insulting peoples parents as you do not know their personal lives well enough, his mother could be ill with a terminal disease or something, you have no idea do you?

        You absolute cretin.

  10. William Pearson
    William Pearson February 25, 2017 at 7:19 pm . Reply

    Now now lads, let’s be Villa fans, no need for filthy innuendo, this site has a good name let’s keep it that way, please.

    1. Saddened
      Saddened February 25, 2017 at 7:44 pm . Reply

      Here, here Bill, we are all Villa fans lads, lets all get on as we all want the same in the end….A bit of success, we have enough to put up with watching the Viila !!!

  11. Adam
    Adam February 25, 2017 at 8:21 pm . Reply

    Great we finally got 3 points! but lets not kid ourselves the performance left a lot to be desired. Jury still out on Bruces tactics and subs for me. Still, weve got to pick it up from somehwere so hopefully thats now!

  12. ifiruledtheworld
    ifiruledtheworld February 25, 2017 at 8:32 pm . Reply

    Now I know in the previous article I said no thanks would be necessary for heading to the game today, but after today I have no nails left on me!!

    On a serious note, oh how that was needed. Think the main lesson learned from today was a midfield of Bacuna, Lansbury and Jedinak works. Unfortunately Bacuna will now likely miss a few games after his late red. Lansbury was superb on set pieces today, not only scored from one but looked dangerous whenever he whipped one in.

    Don’t really agree with the “we were lucky” comments, Johnstone didn’t have a save to make until the 75th minute!! As for 1-0, should have been more, Hutton spurned a great chance and Bacuna missed an absolute gift after misplaced pass from Carson.

    A good result today, Derby are a decent side, and considering our form, they certainly fancied themselves heading into it. Now let’s make it back to back wins Tuesday!!


  13. bws
    bws February 25, 2017 at 8:46 pm . Reply

    Back to winning ways we just need to make it habitual now.
    Wyness on the radio Friday said what a mess Randy and his minions had left the club in, he said something along the lines of every time he opened a draw another problem popped out!

    1. jvillan
      jvillan February 25, 2017 at 8:53 pm . Reply

      maybe they should just keep drawers closed, bit like bruce blaming everyone else for whats going on,it still a farce of a club

  14. DSVilla
    DSVilla February 25, 2017 at 9:48 pm . Reply

    I don’t believe IIRTW can claim this victory. I’m in Australia so slept through it so think it’s my change of habit. Hopefully a couple more to come while I am away.
    I worry about our lack of possession. We need the ball to control games. Long long way to go. What a relief to finally get 3 points though

  15. VillaAwayInDiv3
    VillaAwayInDiv3 February 26, 2017 at 1:01 am . Reply

    Lucky ????
    WE scored
    AS said we also had chances…Hutton,Bacuna and the best moment of match ( could be season) when Green hit post – if that had been 2 inches to the right it would have been No 2.
    Bent should have had a Pen – were we lucky..yes but what about our luck over past 8 years…….
    They had 70/30 possession and hardly got into our area.
    Its the win everyone (??) said they would take no matter how it was achieved… a chance to hopefully build slowly on this and try and get a bit of spirit going.
    Even if we get another 4 points this week it will not be all roses to the end of season but at least we might have a chance to play a bit better week on week.

    1. Villain1
      Villain1 February 26, 2017 at 12:13 pm . Reply

      Its no coincidence that good sides are lucky and poor sides aren’t. I don’t buy into this luck BS, we’ve deserved everything we’ve got over the past few years because of dreadful ownership and poor management

  16. Bill Pearson
    Bill Pearson February 26, 2017 at 9:24 am . Reply

    I still think we have a lot to learn, been studying the match by watching it on tv, Clark’s tackle ? have to say close on a penalty to me, bad luck on Greens header but they didn’t show other efforts from Villa like Hutton crack at goal that would have sunk Derby,it took the defender off his feet.better understanding in defensive midfield and a shame Bacuna lost his cool. all in all something to work on in the next coming weeks.

  17. Villain1
    Villain1 February 26, 2017 at 12:12 pm . Reply

    About as scrappy and ugly a win as you can get against what seemed like a mediocre Derby team. The performance levels are still very poor. We’ll scrap the results to stay up but there is nothing to suggest this management team are building anything. The tactics are far too negative and as expected Bruce is reactive as opposed to proactive with changes and subs. The obvious sign of a manager who is completely outdated with the modern game.

    1. OohAhPaulMcGrath
      OohAhPaulMcGrath February 27, 2017 at 1:29 am . Reply

      Best comment so far. The least we expected of Bruce was an improvement on RDM but we are worse than under RDM imo and don’t play as good a football either

      1. bws
        bws February 27, 2017 at 12:55 pm . Reply

        Oohah if you take of your 1982 rose coloured specs and took the European cup final in context -Bayern battered us and got caught with a sicker punch but does it matter? A wins a win.

  18. nath
    nath February 26, 2017 at 12:34 pm . Reply

    omg i love reading this site after games, whether i managed to see the game or not, its great getting the feelings from real fans, the minute by minute living of a suffering villa fan. there are some great posters in general, some great wind up merchants. i don’t understand why some have to go about spoiling this for others.

    cant we just all get along and enjoy this win and move on. like the great manager lamberk once quoted. for those that wanted a great performance to go along with this victory. i feel sad for you to never be satisfied. for me its winning then performances come after. talk about putting the cart before the horse.

    and i apologize for all the positive posters and myself for trying to see the good in another bad season

    1. Hitchens 60
      Hitchens 60 February 26, 2017 at 1:30 pm . Reply

      Bang on Nath. We won so why not celebrate? Most of us, I think, would agree it wasn’t the greatest performance but when you’re on a bad run any win is good.

      Now we have an opportunity to put a little run of good results together. I was in favour of Bruce’s appointment – am I entirely happy with him so far – no of course not but that doesn’t mean I’m going to continually slag him off. I still believe, in the medium term, he is the right man for the job – long term is a different matter but, first, we have to learn to ‘walk’ again.

      1. owen
        owen February 26, 2017 at 3:50 pm . Reply

        Bruce went back to basics and we played like we did at the start of his regime. And we won. Never looked like conceding and dangerous from set pieces. Not pretty but we won. Just like under Martin O’Neill.

        If we can beat Bristol City we can then roll over Rotherham and have some momentum. Then we have lots of teams above us that we can get points from and finish a respectable 10th.

        We would never have been better than that after last seasons debacle. I’m not convinced we’ll play any attractive football under Bruce. But as long as we win and he gets us up and stabilises us in the prem he will have contributed to our 5 year plan. In the prem we can worry about fancy play. The Champ is about winning and nothing else. Bruce knows that because this time next year if we are not top 6, he’ll be out.

        1. OohAhPaulMcGrath
          OohAhPaulMcGrath February 27, 2017 at 1:27 am . Reply

          I just can’t believe that with 13 games to go and £80m spent our season is effectively over. Playing blues at VP is the only game worth bothering with as a fan the other 12 are just meaningless non events

        2. Guest
          Guest February 27, 2017 at 11:27 am . Reply

          Spent £36m on strikers, around £80m overall and you think 10th is respectable?

          Our expectations are literally at rock bottom.

          1. jvillan
            jvillan February 27, 2017 at 11:38 am . Reply

            never looked liked conceding what, derby stone wall pen 1 st half not given,bent header which he should done better,ball bouncing around our area for last half hour with a keeper defenders don t trust
            yes hutton should have burried his great chance, greens header and bacuna chance when derbys sloppy play gifted it , only greens header was from decent play

      2. bws
        bws February 27, 2017 at 12:51 pm . Reply

        Well said Nath, Hitchy , this constant negativity is (imo) responsible for the toxic atmosphere down at VP.
        Ok I’ve had my runs with Langford and the likes and I still believe they were wrong to back Randy as he run the club into the ground but that eras gone, it’s in the past, This Is A New Regime, a new owner, a new CEO, a new manager, new Coaches, new from top to bottom.
        We really do need get away from this toxic negative mind set and start getting behind the team.
        I’ll get me tin hat out, JV the floor is yours.

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