Villa – West Ham; An interesting game?

So I’d just arrived at the bar in anticipation of some long-awaited proper football for me and a bit of egg chucking for the missus when I saw a young chap in a claret and blue shirt.
As you do, I thought I’d have a bit of friendly banter and said “I nearly told you I liked the shirt then”, thinking he was a West Ham fan. “We’ve got your lot tomorrow, haven’t we?”
To my surprise, he answered with a northern accent and proceeded to tell me they’d got Brentford.
I’d even looked at the badge on his shirt but it still took me a while to realise he was a Burnley fan.
The shirts are far too similar to me. There should be only one (ours, of course, as we all know any other claret and blue shirts are just imposters!).
We’re in Gran Canaria for a bit of sun, but it was all a bit of a letdown yesterday. I lost a tenner backing Arsenal (a holiday one-off, as I normally detest betting), England lost (not that it bothered me, but it upset the missus) and to cap it all it poured down for about an hour.It wouldn’t be so bad normally, but the bars here are not at all waterproof, which sort of destroys the “it doesn’t rain in the pub” argument. I suppose it could be a lot worse, going from what I’ve been hearing of the weather back home.

Anyway,I told Mr Burnley fan that we’d got spam tomorrow and his reply was that it should be a good game, which I thought was interesting as it obviously means we’re seen as a good watch for the neutrals.
I suppose it makes sense, as we do tend to score goals, but I wish I thought we were that good when I’m watching us.
I found the Liverpool and Arsenal games quite entertaining really, although the Preston-Milwall game that was on a different screen stood out as a real bruiser, quite reminiscent of a 70’s game.
Proper footy, where the ref just let the game flow, as opposed to Ashley Young getting a red for having his foot stamped on by Mo Salah (or at least that’s how I saw it).

I’m rattling.
Squad news and the good part (if you like the look of him, as I do) is that Nicolo Zaniolo will be available after he seemingly gave Monchi a plausible explanation about his involvement in an illegal betting scandal. Given that he was sent home by Italy, assumedly for not being in the right frame of mind, you have to wonder if Emery might think the same. I don’t think he will, personally.
Otherwise nothing has changed.

West Ham are in a reasonably good position with Full-backs Aaron Cresswell and Ben Johnson close to being fit, but probably not quite ready.

It should indeed be a decent game and it will be interesting, not least because we’ve won ten on the trot at home, something we haven’t done since 1983 while they have beaten us at home the last three times running. So one of those stats has to give.
I’ll be off back down that bar for the game and am quite looking forward to it. I might even have another conversation with the bookie’s runner. But which way to go?
A point apiece would see us move above Newcastle into 5th and Spam into 8th above Man U.
And if I do actually have a bet, I think that’s how I’ll go.

Villa 1-Spam 1

I do have a sneaky feeling though, that we will win this.
And if we do, I might just begin to believe that we’re better than I think we are.

Up the Villa!


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  1. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 3:34 pm . Reply

    Interesting line up.

    Martinez, Konsa, Kamara, Torres, Digne, Cash, Zaniolo, Luiz, McGinn, Diaby, Watkins.

    Carlos on the bench.

    Playing three at the back?

    1. OLL again
      OLL again October 22, 2023 at 4:17 pm . Reply

      Looks like 4-3-3 to me. West Ham have exploited an aerial dominance against us in recent years, because of how we matched players at set pieces. With Ward Prowse now on delivery that area will be more important to get right.
      However JWP is no Declan Rice. Away from set pieces he has looked a below par midfielder for the EPL. Villa could completely dominate midfield. That would be a rarity, but Emery may be working on just such a cuning plan.

  2. Holte
    Holte October 22, 2023 at 3:42 pm . Reply

    1-1 is the score line I think is most likely. With 2 home games in the Premier league coming up, I can’t help but think how great the league table would look if we get 6 points.

  3. Sidforever
    Sidforever October 22, 2023 at 4:20 pm . Reply

    Must admit to not feeling confident today. But then again I felt the same against Brighton.

  4. Badger123
    Badger123 October 22, 2023 at 4:20 pm . Reply

    Torres is in for a tough game, I think.

  5. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum October 22, 2023 at 4:34 pm . Reply

    Nah. 2-1 Villa! Close call at 45 seconds though!!!

  6. Badger123
    Badger123 October 22, 2023 at 4:42 pm . Reply

    Too slooooooowwwwwww.

  7. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum October 22, 2023 at 4:50 pm . Reply

    It’s an evenly paced game…Bit like everyone’s getting back up to speed after the international break…Ollie should have scored though…I’d say we’re on top currently…

  8. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 5:01 pm . Reply

    Luiz – 6th consecutive goal at VP – new record. Good goal as well

  9. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 5:02 pm . Reply

    And perfect for my Fantasy Football 🙂

  10. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum October 22, 2023 at 5:02 pm . Reply

    Luiz!!!! 6 on the trot!!!!!

  11. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum October 22, 2023 at 5:19 pm . Reply

    Nice to see a free flowing game with few stupid hold ups. Only 2 minutes added time. Two proper footballing sides. A lot of respect for Moyes but Spam need a beating!!!!

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 5:29 pm . Reply

      We played some nice football and, perhaps, should be 2 up.

      West Ham came into the game a lot more after we scored – Paqueta is a real threat – but if they over attack (like Brighton) then I fancy us to open them up.

      Not over yet – we need another.

    2. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 5:31 pm . Reply

      Not too much Bum Bum, it is 14 unbeaten to Moyes after all

  12. Badger123
    Badger123 October 22, 2023 at 5:28 pm . Reply

    Totally deserved lead for me.
    Can we hold it?
    I’d certainly hope so.

  13. DSVilla
    DSVilla October 22, 2023 at 5:39 pm . Reply

    No Duran?

  14. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 5:41 pm . Reply

    Luiz on for a hat trick?

  15. Badger123
    Badger123 October 22, 2023 at 5:42 pm . Reply

    Yep, definitely a pen and Luiz again. Get in.

  16. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum October 22, 2023 at 5:42 pm . Reply

    Oh yes!!!!! Boy am I enjoying waking up Monday morning and recalling our wins!!!!!

  17. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 5:48 pm . Reply

    Typical – so much luck – typical Moyes.

  18. Bum Bum
    Bum Bum October 22, 2023 at 5:55 pm . Reply

    I don’t blame Zaniolo for going down. Everyone does it.
    We need a 3rd or to tighten up and shut up shop. A good game. Even for the neutrals.

  19. Hitchens60
    Hitchens60 October 22, 2023 at 6:01 pm . Reply

    Completely lost control of this game – you have to think West Ham are going to get another.

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