Villa -Stoke; What to think?

Ah man, I’m sure I read somewhere this was a 5pm kick-off.
It’s not and it’s a rare 3pm kick-off, which means I probably won’t get to see it.
My AVTV subscription and extras is beginning to look a waste of time, but I’m quite happy for games to be played at the proper time, even if it means it’s my loss.

I’m up for this game, as a fan, but let’s look at the script.

Squad news first and the big news is that Grealish is ruled out.
That, on the face of it might seem like a big miss, but I’m actually intrigued to see how we work without him.
I honestly believe that the team does not revolve around Jack, as much as I rate him.
Indeed, I believe that Jack can work against us, in slowing the game down too much at times.
I’m ready for egg on my face, don’t worry.

Henri Lansbury (hamstring), Neil Taylor (hamstring), Birkir Bjarnason (groin), James Bree and Mile Jedinak are all out.

Given that most of these are what I perceive as goners, come the winter window, I’m not scared about this either.
Adomah is a doubt, which is more of a concern to my mind.
I like the bloke and the way he plays the game.

Stoke look in good nick, at a quick glance, not that I’m bothered.

Cutting to the quick then and it’s just a feeling.

Stoke are going well.
They are unbeaten in eight games and haven’t been been beaten away since September the 1st.

I don’t care about all that rubbish.
They’re going to meet a proper team tomorrow.

And we’re going to beat them 3-1.

Purely because they won’t be able to live with the way we play.
We’ll blitz them, simple.

The faith is very strong.

Please let it be so.


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  1. Avatar
    Little8 December 14, 2018 at 11:33 pm .

    Think we will win this one there is a good buzz at villa just lately 😁make sure you all buy Brian little new book he is doing a signing tomorrow I met him yesterday at Tranmere absolute gentleman he is and the book is brilliant

    1. Avatar
      DSVilla December 15, 2018 at 8:32 am .

      Unlike many of the fans on here i wasn’t born a Villa fan. My dad wasn’t particularly interested in football, and I was born in a small town that had a team in the Southern League and never followed them. I moved to Birmingham in the late 80’s and started to watch Villa, buying a season ticket soon after. Prior to that I always liked watching them, and Little was my favourite player. What a talent he was. I’ll be interested to get his book.

      On to today. We will miss Grealish but I am still expecting a win. My only concern is our slow starts in the last two games. I would like to see us come out of the traps quickly on this one.

  2. Avatar
    bill evans December 15, 2018 at 12:20 am .

    I am with you on this one but I’m still worried about the back line. For sure they’ll be goals or I’ll eat my hat. I’m hoping we see young O’Hare get a shout and then for him to play a blinder. I agree about Grealish – it’ll be revealing to see how we adapt. I don’t think we’re hopelessly dependent on him but you’ve got to be sure.

  3. Avatar
    Holte66 December 15, 2018 at 9:30 am .

    I know it’s very unlikely but as Bill says I hope O’Hare gets a runout today. Of all the players we have, he is the closest in style to Grealish so Smith wouldn’t have to tinker to much with the style or set up of the team. I’m expecting Whelan to play DM and Hourihane to be pushed further forward. Another option could be to play Kodja and Bolasie out wide and move El Ghazi to play behind Abraham. My gut feeling still is Stoke to win 2-1. Perhaps it’s 7-8 years of let downs since O’Neill left.

  4. Avatar
    nath December 15, 2018 at 10:16 am .

    ohare needs games and first team games, said it before and its still the exactly same situation. ohare and doyles hayes both need a good season playing real football instead of under23’s practice games no contact allow stuff they are good at. smith like bruce both knew this. you watch green when he returns and that clark both will be chopping to earn a first team slot at villa. both will stand a far better chance as well, because they have more experience of the rough and tumble which is miles different to youth footy.

    grealish will be a big miss ,except smith doesn’t quite focus his tactics solely around grealish like bruce did. i expect hourihane will be moved further forwards and whelen will play his normal role protecting the back four. 2 1 villa

  5. Avatar
    Pat 57 December 15, 2018 at 12:30 pm .

    I’m a bit more confident than most seem on here. Stoke are no great shakes having won just 2 out of their last 6 matches and I think our pace up front will make the difference. At VP I think we’ll do them. I’ll predict 3-1

  6. Avatar
    Hitchens60 December 15, 2018 at 3:22 pm .

    Watching BBC live text – seems we’ve made a slow start and Stoke looking the better side?

    1. Avatar
      DSVilla December 15, 2018 at 3:28 pm .

      Yes slow start again. I’m not sure why that is but I wouldn’t expect Smith wants it that way.

  7. Avatar
    Bill Pearson December 15, 2018 at 3:28 pm .

    Got it on a avtv hard game miss that man in the middle. Free kick outside the box, shit nearlly Got one,

  8. Avatar
    Bill Pearson December 15, 2018 at 3:48 pm .

    0 – 0 HT . we’ve had most of the game and 4 corners will good chances.

    1. Avatar
      Hitchens60 December 15, 2018 at 3:54 pm .

      Bill good to hear. According to BBC – Stoke have more shots and more on target although we have the edge in possession so it looks pretty even.

  9. Avatar
    DSVilla December 15, 2018 at 4:06 pm .

    shit. 1-0 down

    1. Avatar
      Little8 December 15, 2018 at 4:08 pm .

      FFS missing grealish

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