I’m not going to dwell on the Palace game too much, as most of it has been said already here and elsewhere, save to say that their handball goal should have stood and Grealish, in all honesty should have been booked for trying to deceive the ref.
The performance was adequate and it seems many sites gave very decent player ratings for most of the team.
But being realistic, I think the truth is that it was more about Palace being very poor. Even Taylor was rated as very good, after all and we all know how he’s rated by the Villa fans. Good professional yes, but by no means a quality player.
Perhaps I’m being harsh.
You can only beat what’s put in front of you after all.
And anyway, it doesn’t matter what I think; all that mattered was us getting the points.
Which we did.
Grealish looked brighter, but seems to have lost a bit of attacking instinct and seems to hesitate at times. He certainly should have shot first time in the play that led up to the non-penalty, imo.
Elmo did well, as did Trezeguet, in the second half at least. I pointed out a couple of weeks back that he looks our best hope as a finisher lately and seems to have better positional sense when we do threaten. So much so that I wonder if there would be any mileage in putting him up top?
Nah, it’s a daft thought and it’s too late anyway.
Which leads me nicely into the Everton game.
I watched bits of their game against Wolves and they didn’t look very good. The classic “they’re already on the beach” definitely sprang to mind, with even some of their own players admitting that they lacked desire and need their backsides kicking.
Which is what I think the game will boil down to.
Who wants it the most?
There’s no doubt the Villa lads worked hard and played for each other yesterday and it was good to see, as it means we ain’t quite down just yet.
For me, our best hope is that Everton don’t fire themselves up. Our luck says they will, but it’s hard to see how. They have nothing to gain, after all, apart from maybe a few quid in position money and it’s hard to see that motivating the players much.
I’m too scared to predict the score, because I don’t want to jinx us, so I’ll just say I’ll be keeping everything crossed come kickoff.
And then, I can’t finish without commenting about Man City.
CAS mostly overturning UEFA’s decision is horrendous and scary.
This has now moved all the power away from UEFA and towards the clubs.
In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me if FFP is dropped, because it seems it’s unenforceable.
A German paper, Der Spiegel, found evidence that Etihad sponsored the club for £67 Million, yet the airline itself only paid around £8 million or so, with the rest paid by the Abu Dhabi group.
How can they get away with this?
Every man and his dog knows this is bent.
The worrying part is a Football expert who helped write the FFP rules said on the Beeb that if we’re not careful, the European game will be controlled by just three middle Eastern entities, which are basically countries (Saudi, Abu Dhabi and the UAE).
How on earth have we let it come to this?
Actually, it’s probably quite easy to answer that.
Football has sold it’s soul to pure and unadulterated greed.
And Sky and the Premier league are the most guilty.
I strongly suspect that those of us who said the Premier league will kill the game are slowly being proved right.