What I learned from the Spurs game

First off, I have to say I was surprised by the inclusion of Taylor and Elmohamady.
I said in the preview, that in my opinion, this was pretty much a free ticket for Dean Smith to do whatever he liked, seeing as it was such a tough fixture and losing wasn’t massively important.

Hence I really don’t understand why Guilbert, who looked very decent in the friendlies, didn’t even get into the squad.
Matt Targett is apparently not so good in defence, so I can possibly understand Taylor starting and to be fair, I thought he actually did okay for us.

Maybe Smith just wanted to see Trezeguet in action and felt that the familiarity of Elmo behind him was just the better option.
I can’t really complain, but just thought that a game like this was ideal for throwing as many of the new signings into the deep end as possible.

After a dodgy eight minutes or so, where we could easily have conceded, John McGinn scored a very nice goal which upped our confidence and led to us having a very decent first half, where we pretty much matched the home side.

The second half was a different matter and as the game went on, so Spurs looked more threatening.
After Ericksen was introduced, Spurs just took control and goals were looking increasingly imminent, which led to much frustration on my part.
So much so, that I questioned Smith’s tactics in not trying to attack them more.
I should say here, that while I love the fact that Dean Smith is our manager, he is not a god. He can and will make mistakes, which I’ll criticise when the time is right. Sorry if you don’t like that, but while I’m a Villa fan, I’m too old to be a totally blind Villa fanatic.

Anyway, after some reflection (which is why the post is a bit late) while I’d have liked us to “go for it” more, so I think it was more a case of a superior side just wore us down.
No doubt if we’d have pushed up more, we’d only have been caught on the break anyway, so it was a bit of a “rock and a hard place” situation.
It was just Smith’s “you score three, we’ll score four” quote that resonated and was winding me up at the time.

Mings was outstanding and looked like a one man defence at times. The encouraging part is Engels looked good alongside him too and you can see a good relationship forming there.

I’ve seen that Jamie Redknapp has raved about Wesley, but find myself wondering why on that showing?
Yes, he was involved in our goal, but otherwise looked pretty lightweight and was out-muscled too easily most of the time. I think he just found the physicality and pace a bit of a shock.
No worries though, as it can take time to adjust to the premier league and I think he will.

Where Redknapp did get it right though, is in saying that John McGinn looked like a £55 million player.
Let’s just say that I’m not surprised in the slightest.

Something I seriously did learn is that it definitely seems like the game has moved on in the short time we’ve been away from the Premier league.
Our performance would probably have got a result anywhere in the championship, because it really wasn’t that bad.
We need to retain the ball better, but that’s something we’ve been saying for a long time.

Which reminds me.
Grealish is totally wasted as part of a Bruce type defence.
I definitely didn’t learn anything there.

Ultimately, we played last season’s Champion’s league finalist and gave a pretty good showing for the majority of the game on their turf.

I’ve definitely learned that I think we’ll be okay overall this season.


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  1. Avatar
    Bill Pearson August 14, 2019 at 10:45 pm .

    Tammy miss a penalty and Chelsea lost the cup.dear o dear.

    1. Avatar
      Pat 57 August 15, 2019 at 12:10 am .

      Bill, I had a feeling he wouldn’t score. Shame but it’s all part of the learning process.

      Haven’t said that if he plays against us I wouldn’t mind him missing a penalty at all 🙂

      1. Avatar
        Big Fat Ron August 15, 2019 at 1:44 pm .

        Truth be told his penalties are awful. His winner against Albion was as bad as last night’s. The fact that he never aims for the corners and lacks power suggests a confidence issue. Needs to study Shearer, LeTissier, and Cantona’s pens!

      2. Avatar
        Bill Pearson August 15, 2019 at 2:12 pm .

        Pat 57, so did I, why that thought came to me God knows, he walked up to the spot, closed his eyes and deep breath hit the ball right side of keeper, trailing leg saved that ball. Hard lines for him and I’d have him back tomorrow Pat.

  2. Avatar
    Pat 57 August 15, 2019 at 11:58 am .

    The BBC has asked people to predict the final placings in the Premier League for this season and here it is –


    They predict that we’ll finish 15th while Norwich and Sheffield will go down. Just hope they’re right!

  3. Avatar
    Holte66 August 15, 2019 at 6:25 pm .

    So Kodja is out injured for a couple of weeks leaving just Wesley and Davis as our strikers. Whilst I think Hogan isn’t the answer long term, it’s starting to look a mistake letting him go out on loan. He does offer something different to the others. Smith has told Wesley he went down to easily at WHL which is something I commented on after game. Basically meaning toughen up now you are in the premier league. Going back to Kodja, how on earth he managed to get injured when he hardly kicked the ball is beyond me. Good job the rest of the team can contribute to our goal tally.

    1. Avatar
      Badger123 August 15, 2019 at 8:55 pm .

      Holte, if you believe the rumours, Kodjia has agreed personal terms with Besiktas.
      Imo Kodjia isn’t injured at all, has quite simply said he wants out and is agitating for a move.

      I’ve always liked him. As much as he has seemed clumsy and selfish at times, I agree he offers something different.
      But it’s obvious Smith doesn’t rate him, other than as a back-up player.
      Which is where I have some sympathy for him.
      He’s at his peak and I can see why he wouldn’t want to be on the bench.

      That said, he’s contracted and should play the game (which in fairness, he probably is, publicly).
      He’s being paid very good money, after all.

      Call me a moaner, but we are already lightweight in the striking department, even with Kodjia in the squad.
      If we let him go (and I think we will, if he doesn’t want to stay), not getting another striker in will prove to be a massive mistake.

      Then again, I suspect we had one lined up and it just went wrong, big time.

      1. Avatar
        Pat 57 August 15, 2019 at 10:07 pm .

        I agree that we’re light when it comes to strikers. I know this may sound a bit daft but, as we have so many CBs, why not try Chester up front if we’re stuck? He’s not bad with his feet and he’s scored enough goals with his head to prove that he can be a real threat.

        Just an idea (and yes I have had a drink!)

      2. Avatar
        Hitchens60 August 16, 2019 at 7:19 am .

        Badger – you do love a conspiracy theory 🙂

        You may well be right though – let’s see what the rest of the month brings.

        On a broader note, I do think these differing end dates for transfer windows is somewhat farcical and yet another example of the incompetency of those running football. There should be the same window dates across all European football set by EUFA – or better still just abolish them. It seems to me that limited windows are one reason why transfer fees have escalated so much

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