WBA – Villa; Can we finish the Baggies off?

I probably should be, but am not, anywhere near as nervous about tonight’s game as I was on Saturday.
A 2-1 advantage shouldn’t really make me feel so confident, but given that we played quite poorly, especially in the first half, yet still managed to win, I’m just not particularly worried.

I think the biggest plus for us is Gayle not being able to play and although Jimmy Shan insists that Albion have very good attacking options, I just don’t think their attack will be equal to ours.

Squad-wise we’re all good and the only questions are about who Dean Smith wans to start.
The team mostly picks itself, but there are doubts about Whelan and Adomah being in the eleven.

Although many are calling for Hourihane to start after his decent performance on Saturday, it wouldn’t surprise me if Whelan starts again. That might puzzle some of you, but an away game, where the opposition surely have to come at us, probably suits Whelan better, as he’s much better defence-wise.
Of course there’s always the argument that attack is the best means of defence and Hourihane is easily the better option if we’re going to go all out.

Adomah was poor, but I’m not convinced Green did enough to warrant a start over him and I think the youngster is better as a backup, brought on to attack tiring legs.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to a more open game, although Albion need to be careful they don’t open up too much.

I just think we’ll certainly have enough about us to not lose by two goals, which means I think we’ll be going through.
If we get the first goal, it’ll probably be all over.
But then, if they score first, that’ll make a real game of it.

I can see a 1-1 draw, but I’m going to go for a win.
2-1 to us.

Here’s hoping. UTV!


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  1. Holte66
    Holte66 May 16, 2019 at 6:44 pm . Reply

    I had to record the Albion game and watched it back knowing we were in final. Needless to say if I knew it had gone to penalties I would have just fast forwarded 2 hours. We were poor despite dominating possession and we quickly need to get back to our form pre Leeds game. I was impressed with Derby after they were comfortably beaten at home. Their goal on the stroke of half time was a game changer. Having easily beaten Derby twice, it will mean nothing going into the final. Suddenly they have the momentum while our performances are stuttering. Dean Smith has a lot of work to do to get our players back to where they were during March and April.

    1. Pat 57
      Pat 57 May 16, 2019 at 8:31 pm . Reply

      Well I think that Leeds gifted two of Derby’s four goals and Leeds defence was incredibly poor. They won’t have it so easy with us. Also note that they let three goals in over the two games so their defence wasn’t great either.

      They know we’ve stuffed them twice so if we get an early goal I think we’ll be okay.

      1. Big Fat Ron
        Big Fat Ron May 16, 2019 at 10:32 pm . Reply

        Agree about the early goal. Just before and after half time looks a dangerous period. Team will need to be fully focussed!

  2. Bill Pearson
    Bill Pearson May 16, 2019 at 9:40 pm . Reply

    Think we have to agree that some of our player’s have lost their killer punch , take Tammy he’s not the player from a few weeks ago ,Adomha been hit and miss for weeks or even months, I’m not saying the wheels have come off just thinking we have one shot at this to be back where we belong. We need to be fired up for Derby because even them thinking underdogs going into a game gives them a bigger reason to go at us. I know Smith knows all this and I’ve no reason to think he won’t be preparing for Derby on the day. Utv. .

    1. Pat 57
      Pat 57 May 16, 2019 at 9:50 pm . Reply

      I really can’t understand all the negativity. I’ve watched all the play offs and ALL the teams have played below par, it’s just the nature of the game with so much riding on it. If anything I think that we performed the best out of all four teams.

      Leeds were absolutely woeful and played way below their best. They gave two goals to Derby and then allowed Keogh to run all the way from defence to make telling passes for the other two goals. That will not happen against us. Derby let three goals in over both games and, if they play like that against us, we’ll cream them.

      I think that we are in as good a position as we could have hoped for. Man for man we have a better team than Derby and, if we play our game, we will win.

      Remember last year we were the underdogs against a team that had had a good run and we lost.

      Have faith – Villa in the Prem!

  3. Big Fat Ron
    Big Fat Ron May 16, 2019 at 10:34 pm . Reply

    Love the optimism, Pat. I’d rather keep it lower key at this stage, though!

  4. nath
    nath May 17, 2019 at 6:49 am . Reply

    was i banned for 24 hours lol or did this site crash like leeds premiership dreams AGAIN.

    i wasnt looking forwards to leeds final, they are a good team and they would have caused us lots of problems. thats not to say derby wont. they played a perfect game against leeds. they hit them on fast counters like brenford and wigan did the later with only 10 men. but thats something we struggle to do fast breaks. we play more controlled stuff which was perfect for leeds who commit so amny forwards, it gives them loads of times to retreat back into shape

    can not wait now premiership is so close we can almost reach out and touch it. upthevilla

    1. Hitchens60
      Hitchens60 May 17, 2019 at 7:54 am . Reply

      There did seem to be a problem with the site for a short period – or perhaps we were both banned 🙂

    2. Bill Pearson
      Bill Pearson May 17, 2019 at 12:31 pm . Reply

      Nath, would we ever ban you, if they did I’d start a partition bring Nath back, have to admit Nath I did wonder where you’ve gone. Then I thought is Nath Badger or Badger Nath both disappear now and again. Anyway welcome back.😅😃

      1. nath
        nath May 17, 2019 at 6:14 pm . Reply

        i am glad my post failed, i was a little hung over, my post was rushed and full of emotion. also i was extremely negative for first time in ages. so happy the site was facing a meltdown. i guessed it was more angry villa fans. but hey we made it and semi finals are always difficult especially against your local rivals.

  5. Pat 57
    Pat 57 May 17, 2019 at 10:50 am . Reply

    On some non-Villa topics – I see that Pulis is gone from Boro which is probably a good thing for any Boro fan who likes seeing football played.

    Hughton for the Baggies? It seems like a good move to me. I can’t really understand why he was sacked from Brighton, he was given next to nothing to buy new players and he kept them up. If I was a betting man I’d put some money on them going down next season.

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