Villa – Fulham; Er, we can win this, can’t we?

So what to think here then?
After what I think was a total debacle against Wolves, I’ve decided to let it go and think we should just move on.

I’ve seen it said in quite a few places that we can’t beat teams above us and while at a glance that’s true, I’m not convinced that’s quite fair.
Ok, Wolves beat us easily and they’re not currently top of the table for no reason.
Cardiff beat us quite easily too and they’re currently second.
Reading beat us and they’re currently struggling.
We got a point against Bristol City.

Er, so what’s my point?
Well, while our record looks bad on paper as it stands, all of those games were away.
But if we beat them at home, it puts things in a slightly better light, doesn’t it?

As for the rest of the clubs above us, we haven’t played them yet, so we can’t really comment.

What I’m saying is if we’d played those sides at home and won, we’d be top of the table now, sitting very pretty.
Whilst perhaps not immediately realising that we’d have to face them away later in the season.
Things can and definitely will change over the course of this season and we’ve got some very tough fixtures out of the way quite early.

Which leads us to Fulham. At home.
Where I think this is much more of a “must win” than last week.

Fulham are sat just a point below us and play a pretty open game, with the same sort of threat that Wolves presented, in quick passing and pace.
There’s no doubt it’ll be another tough test, but I think it’ll be a much better representation of our credentials for promotion.
Win this and we’ll all no doubt be happy for another week.
And we really should, as we all know our home record is much better than the away one.

So what do we know?
Grealish, Lansbury, Jedinak aren’t quite ready.
Gabby is injured. Again? Hmm, read permanently out of the frame and rightly so, although expect him to miraculously recover to make the squad against Blues.
Otherwise, I don’t see much changing, except maybe Onomah coming in to give Davis a rest? Or perhaps just an early substitution if the game’s going well?
There’s a very good case that says Whelan and Hourihane are too slow, so maybe Conor will sit it out with Onomah in his place?
I can’t see Bruce dropping Whelan at all.
Taylor is of course, still suspended.

As for Fulham, Ryan Fredericks is a doubt, but Aboubakar Kamara,
Captain Tom Cairney and ex-Villan Jordan Graham are all available.

All in all, we’re very decent at home and Fulham are very decent away, which should make it a good game, you’d think.

I’m going for that home advantage to give us an edge.
2-1, to us then.
And I dread to think of the repercussions if we don’t get the result.
The pressure on Bruce is about as strong as I can recall in recent times. I don’t envy him in the slightest.

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