(courtesy of the Villablogger.com)
We can beat these, can’t we?
I’m not so sure myself, but it seems many Villa fans are pretty confident, which is fair enough.
There has been much comment about how we need to win our next three games if we’re to have any chance of survival and although that seems a massive ask, we really do need to put some points on the board.
Looking at the form table, West ham haven’t won at all in their last six, but by the same token they’ve only lost one, having drawn five. Which of course means they’re hard to beat.
They don’t concede many either if you take their 4-1 drubbing at White Hart Lane out of the equation and that game apart, they’ve only conceded two goals against some stiff opposition.
Which is where I suspect we’re going to find things tough today.
If you assume we’re probably going to concede a goal, we’re going to have to score two to actually win the game.
I know I’m stating the obvious, but given our enduring lack of penetration in the final third, how likely is it that it’s going to happen against a good defensive side?
I don’t know is the simple answer, but the fact is we have to make it happen somehow.
If we don’t, I think even the most positive of us will have to start conceding that it’s all over; a position that many of us have already reached.
As for me, I think I’m still in a state of disbelief or even self-denial if you like.
But it’s beginning to dawn on me that if we don’t get the result today, we’ve simply had it.
Squad news then and West Ham have Diafra Sakho, Victor Moses, Winston Reid and Dimitri Payet all out.
Andy Carroll might make it, but is doubtful and it’s too soon for Manuel Lanzini, who have both had thigh problems.
The Villa are in pretty good shape, but have Micah Richards out again for his fourth consecutive game.
Joe Bennett and Aly Cissokho have been recalled, but can’t play until January.
So where’s this one going to go?
Garde was criticised last week for not going for it against Newcastle, but I can understand his thinking.
This week however, if we’re in a similar position, we really are going to have to attempt to win the game.
We have to get the three points, no ifs, no buts.
Looking at West Ham’s form, I’d suggest this has 0-0 or 1-1 written all over it.
But that isn’t going to be good enough and that same form suggests there will be a change, meaning one of the teams is going to get the three points.
Let’s hope it’s us.