Villa – Palace; Oh dear

(courtesy of and just to remind the lads what they should be fighting for)

I suspect you know what’s coming in this one and the brutal truth is I’ve had to debate with myself if I should even bother offering my thoughts on this game.

Another truth is that I’ll be at work again and have to work out some devilishly sneaky way of getting to watch the game.
Part of me asks why I bother, but we all know how it is: We follow blindly, because we can’t resist and typical of football, you just never know.

Unfortunately, for this game, I think I do know and the sad fact is that we don’t have a hope in hell of beating the mighty Crystal palace, in my opinion.

That’s not to decry Glenn Pardew’s side though.
He’s done a brilliant job and Palace are the antithesis of Aston Villa (just goes to show the difference between an equally poorly run club as us, in Newcastle, as opposed to Palace, in my opinion).
They’re organised and look like they know what there aims are and what they’re doing.

No, it’s more that I look back and see the gulf that has existed between the clubs over the fairly long time I’ve supported the Villa and it makes me want to cry at how far we’ve fallen.
The sad fact is, that over the years, we’d generally have been expected to beat Palace, it’s as simple as that.

Squads then and again I’m not really sure why I’m bothering, as I suspect Palace’s second string would beat us, no problem.

But, Palace have Connor Wickham in contention and Yohan Cabaye is a maybe. Yannick Bolasie is definitely out, which is good for us, as I rate the player.

As for us, Gabby is doubtful, but it matters not. He has less chance of getting a game than I do.
Micah Richards, who showed some balls in speaking to the fans against Wycombe, should be ok.
Jack Grealish is still suffering the back-end of tonsillitis and Sanchez and Hutton are both still out.

So we face the team with one of, if not the best, away records in the Prem this season.
While we’ve won erm, how many, at home?

I could talk about tactics, but it’s pointless, as apparently the players don’t listen to what they’re being told anyway, according to Garde.
And even if they did, we’re simply not good enough.
How we’re over a third of the way through the window without having bought anyone in, is just beyond me.
And why have we only just held crisis talks, when they should have happened weeks ago?

Was Randy really so naive to think that we might not need strengthening?
I really suspect he was, which just sums it all up, doesn’t it?

It’s actually hard to predict this one, as instinct tells me that we’ll lose by at least 2, probably 3 and maybe even more goals.
In short, I see a major thrashing coming up sometime soon and Palace could be the team to do it, especially if the players just throw the towel in after the weekend’s events.
But if Palace take the lead, I don’t think they’ll have to work too hard to stay in front and might contain us easily, hence not having to go for the jugular.
Conversely, if we score first, we might at least make a game of it.

But I’m still going for a 2 goal home defeat.
In fact, I’m not sure the score really matters that much and it’s a funny old game, isn’t it?

I’ll just go for the home loss, as that’s nailed on, I reckon.


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  1. VillaFan
    VillaFan January 12, 2016 at 11:05 pm .

    I ended up watching the whole game after saying I wouldnt.

    Kozak. Thought he was brilliant tonight. Won most of his headers, held the ball up well, ran his socks off, showed endevour and commitment, and made runs behind the defence. While he is fit, Gestede should never get near this team.

    Ayew. Again, brilliant, another day he could have bagged a couple of goals. Never stopped running and tracked back. If anyone doubts his skill, find the clip where he is in the area, with two palace players blocking his path to goal. He gets between them when it looked impossible, beat another player and then just hit it too hard and it went over.

    Gil. Another one who gave everything. Cant help think he needs to hit the gym a bit, he does seem to get outmuscled a bit.

    Westwood. While he did nothing spectacular, he worked hard and got stuck in, making some aggressive tackles andhassling more. He even ran
    Forward, passed forward and had a shot! Best performance I’ve seen so far.

    Veretout. He looks quality. Solid game.

    Gana. Another solid performer, got stuck in and
    Really gave the defence some shielding.

    Bacuna and Cissokho. Both had good games, and both defended well.

    Lescott and Okore. Looked pretty solid to me tonight, calm with the ball, and won most headers.

    Bunn. Solid, but didnt really have a save to make. Somehow though, he seemed to bring a calmness to the backline. His kicking let him down 3 or 4 times tho.

    Overall, we got a bit of luck. And most importantly we got stuck in. And we defended from
    The front mostly, with the front men hounding players and not giving time on the ball. Midfield, we worked as a team, there was a passage of play where palace were passing about and we just hounded them by getting stuck in, making crunching tackles and showing some

    It actually looked like they gave a shit tonight.

    Leicester next. 3 more points and things might start to look better.

    Heres hoping. UTV!

    1. Claret and Blue
      Claret and Blue January 12, 2016 at 11:11 pm .

      Spot on analysis pal, although we need a Westwood replacement badly! He just looks extremely fragile to me, but like marmite amongst the faithful, not a fan at all myself !

      3 points against Leicester (unlikely) and we might start to gather a bit of momentum, wish it was tomorrow !

  2. Astonished Villan
    Astonished Villan January 12, 2016 at 11:13 pm .

    Check out Kozak’s touch map on BBC website. He’s got an eye for goal too so he must start vs Leicester. Hopefully, Leicester have tired legs on Sat with 1 day’s less rest and less player rotation so far this season whereas Villa…have the least settled selection so theory is should be fresher

  3. Bentdarren
    Bentdarren January 12, 2016 at 11:51 pm .

    I rest my case about Micah Richards. He along with guzan, sanchez, gestede and Hutton must all be on the bench for villa to have any hope. Commitment and effort was top notch tonight. UTV!

    1. OohAhPaulMcGrath
      OohAhPaulMcGrath January 13, 2016 at 12:32 am .

      I still think Richards as a tight bk would work but he’s no centre half

  4. Villain1
    Villain1 January 13, 2016 at 12:12 am .

    Well done Remi Garde, you deserved that for standing up to the board and the wasters in the squad.
    Good to see Kozak back, he isn’t the best striker you’ll see, but Libor gives us a bit of movement and plenty of commitment and work rate that you will never see from Gestede or the Gabby. He must stay on IMO.
    Lets restore some pride before the championship next season and please let the fan base stick behind Remi.

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