Yeovil 0-1 Villa; We made hard work of that.

We all know the cups are a great leveller, where anything can happen.
It’s why I like them so much and believe we have to go all out against whatever team we face.

Whatever, it’s the midfield where there’s just something not right in my opinion.
It just doesn’t work for me and I’m getting sick of saying it.
Hourihane got a goal, but I still get the feeling he sits too deep.
It seems we played Whelan as the anchor, but his positioning doesn’t seem right and I suspect it’s just clutching at straws, merely to give him a start.

Moreira just seems a shot-stopper to me and his inexperience stands out a mile.
You can see he wants to dominate his area, which is admirable.
But his decision-making is poor and he looks like he can’t see the pace of the game.
Let’s hope he’s just finding his feet.

I heard a lot about the quality and money invested in Yeovil, but it all missed the point to me.
This is a team two leagues below us, after all and we paid more for McGinn than their whole squad cost.

I’m not asking for us to beat league 2 sides by ten goals.
But we should at least dominate them.
Which we didn’t, at all, until we got the goal.

D’Almeida got the MOTM.
Which says it all to me. He had a decent game.

Still, that’s three wins out of our first three games.
As I said recently, that’s our best start since 1962-63 under Mercer.
Quite unbelievable.

You really can’t knock that can you?


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  1. Avatar
    Benno August 16, 2018 at 4:38 am .

    A win is a win, but players on the fringe of the first team didnt really take their chance to show what they can do.

    Tuanzabe looks like he could do a job at centre back, and after Jedinak’s display on Saturday, I think Bruce may opt for that. Hutton should be playing right back with RDL as back up. I hope we pick up a LB on loan because Taylor is very average, but it is nice to have a left footed player there. Be fantastic if we could get Snodgrass back again too, with him and Green on the wings, we would offer a real threat.

    The best thing this year is the fact we have such a good run of games to begin with. Perfect chance to get some points on the board and for Bruce to figure out his best team.

    1. Avatar
      Sidforever August 16, 2018 at 8:14 am .

      I agree with Benni’s comments. The players to be addressed are Elphick, who looks like he will always cost a goal a match and Taylor, who looks shot of confidence and out of his depth. Tuanzebe at centre half is the right decision and a loan for left back ASAP.

      I hope the assist Kodjia created against Yeovil will give him confidence and see a return to form.

  2. Avatar
    nath August 16, 2018 at 7:05 pm .

    Mitchell Clark gone has been loaned out to port vale who are 10th in div2. that is the level ,were all the youth are at villa. we build them up and without most off us seeing them apart from a odd cup game.

    clark will come back next season and he will be ready to win his place in the 1st team. i hope more villa youths drop down with him and get real games they need. playing the under23’s isn’t good enough not for the players hoping to break into our 1st team.

  3. Avatar
    Sidforever August 16, 2018 at 7:26 pm .

    Burton it is in the cup.

    We should go on a run.

    1. Avatar
      badger123 August 16, 2018 at 7:36 pm .

      Yes, unless Bruce throws it away.

  4. Avatar
    nath August 16, 2018 at 7:46 pm .

    the cup doesn’t interest me to be totally honest. i would like to win promotion and be back into the premiership. the problem most fans dont see or understand. bruce eluded to it in the interview after the game. the team he picked for the yeovil game. had never played before together. if you have played football in a team, you will understand the telepathic understanding you develop from playing regular with your team mates, yeovil had it but villa team looked good on paper, but they were playing like strangers.

    if we do have a cup run i hope they continue to rest the team which will be playing in the league, cause its a long old season we all know now. we don’t need injuries to grealish and our new scot

    1. Avatar
      Sidforever August 16, 2018 at 8:13 pm .

      I appreciate your view. My liking of a potential run in the cup is to give our up and coming U23 players first team experience. Otherwise I fear they will just not get a chance.

      The normal approach by our manager is to play and older experienced player out of position. Hence Fulham’ managers view of us being an old team ready for the taking at Wembley, which we were. Or last season when Jedinak was played at centre half and consistently skinned for pace. These examples could be overcome by giving U23 players opportunities in the cups, so when needed in the league we can play a specialist player on the right position. This alone helps players to perform. Further, if more U23 players come into the team in cups, they will have the experience of knowing how each other plays, benefiting the whole team.

      1. Avatar
        nath August 16, 2018 at 8:32 pm .

        i see no harm in giving the kids the cup games. but my point is just their are none reserve football like in past. so when a manager rests the 1st team that team will be thrown together and with little understanding no partnerships, it goes against all the things which make a good side. team its not just effort its a understanding, partnerships around the field,

        the fulham manager was just trying to upset the villa camp before the game. did this work who knows, the game against fulham is in the past now, we blew the chance on the day, we all eluded to lack of legs down the spine, fulham exploited that. but still we had our chances and missed them. referee also played his part.

        i don’t think their are too many in the under23 who could play the whole season in the first team, i dont think they are quite good enough. i liked hayes but against yeovil he was good on the ball as expected, but whe villa were without the ball he was really bad, ineffective without the ball, he should follow cark on loan and learn game in a first team. he will benefit from that more than play the odd cup game in my opinions

  5. Avatar
    nath August 16, 2018 at 8:46 pm .

    RHM was not the best also, yeah he had little to no service, but his movement was dire, he wasn’t alone in lack of movement to create spaces for themselves and others. yeovil worked their butts off in denying villa players spaces. but if these players couldnt work out how to beat their div 2 players, what chances have any other them got in breaking into the first team.

    it was not a rubbish or weakened side by any means we dished out. it was stronger on paper than most the sides put out that day. lots of sides do what bruce did and loads suffer same shite performances. you would think the players would grasp the chance to impress the watching boss and push for a league appearance,

    1. Avatar
      badger123 August 16, 2018 at 11:28 pm .

      With respect, you’re coming over as a know-it-all, imo.

      if Bruce played a side that don’t know each other, for the cup, he’s an idiot and doesn’t understand what the fans want, which is the club fighting on all fronts, imo.

      Games are what interest me and if we’re not involved I don’t want to know.

      I just don’t understand the thinking that says if you go out of the cups early, you have a better chance in the league.

      Momentum is what carries sides forward.
      And that doesn’t include throwing games away to favour the league.

      We’re the Villa and we should fight to win.
      Like Lions.

      Just my opinion 🙂

      1. Avatar
        nath August 17, 2018 at 9:41 am .

        first i don’t care what you think i sound like, i say it how i see it and it offends get over it.

        the league cup is and always been last in cups or league you want to win. nobody bothers with this cup, only a few teams played their full strength teams one was yeovil who should have beaten us.

        bruce played a team to beat yeovil, he wanted to win the game for the fans club and owners etc. but also didnt want to fook up the season doing so. look if you cant see the bigger picture then i will agree. but the team we played should have beaten a div 2 side. if grealish had off injured himself in that game, you would be the first to blast bruce for risking him in a micky mouse cupgame.

        yeovil team were streets ahead of villa in fitness and cohesion, that was down to villa team being thrown together,they never played before, don’t understand how you can say otherwise. unless you mean they trained together. we had better players man for man, but football was never about individuals its a team game and better team players will be 11 better individuals every time. you only get this understanding through games not training.

        1. Avatar
          Guest August 17, 2018 at 12:30 pm .

          Badgers right, you are a total know-it-all.

          And we should be playing to win every game, as that is how winning runs and momentum are built.

          1. Avatar
            nath August 17, 2018 at 12:49 pm .

            that is just my opinion, whether its correct or not, you and others will have to accept it. unless the sites now banning opinions. correct or wrong.

            i saw after each game, punters posting silly ott posts. then change their minds after they won each games. in my opinions not the clubs i reckon they forget the cups especially playing the likes of grealish in them. i have no objections in trying to win the games with youth or sauad players but i do object in risking the first team on a nothing cup.

            feel free to abuse i lap it up

        2. Avatar
          Hitchens60 August 17, 2018 at 1:33 pm .

          I don’t profess to be that knowledgable about the finer side of football tactics etc. – I draw emotional conclusions based on having watched Villa for nearly 60 years!

          Clearly we have some talented youngsters but whether or not they develop into top players is another story – probably less than 10% do.

          RHM and Doyle Hayes are well thought of at Villa and they are the experts. For me RDM was at a major disadvantage playing against two mature and physical (not dirty) cb’s plus his strength is speed and not holding up the ball. We didn’t play to his strengths by continually hitting the ball long or to his feet. We needed to play balls into the channels so he could use his speed.

          Kodjia came on and bullied the cb’s and with Grealish’ class turned the game in our favour.

          We need to strike a balance between giving the better U23’s senior game time and putting out a competitive team. I wasn’t convinced we achieved the latter against Yeovil

  6. Avatar
    Hitchens60 August 16, 2018 at 9:26 pm .

    Rumoured that we’re interested in a loan deal for Cieran Clarke!

    Not sure what to make of that

    1. Avatar
      badger123 August 16, 2018 at 11:43 pm .

      Not a hope in hell, unless he’s homesick

    2. Avatar
      Originallondonlion August 17, 2018 at 9:09 pm .

      Clark has learned nothing from his time with the Ship of Fools, he still makes rash decisions. Bruce has a good eye for CBs so I can’t see Clark returning to play there and he isn’t a fullback.
      Agent trying to find him a new club before he gets booted.

  7. Avatar
    Holte66 August 17, 2018 at 5:44 pm .

    I think Benitez has already dismissed speculation of Clark leaving. Also looks like O’Hare could be going out on loan to Barnsley. I don’t mind our kids going out as long as they get game time, otherwise keep them for U23s and introduce them to first team off bench. I wonder how long it has been since we won first 4 games. I saw 62-63 season we lost game number 4! Hitch mentioned in his post that we didn’t utilise RHM to his strengths, which got me thinking that Bruce has a poor record at Villa for getting the best out of any of the strikers we have. This needs to be addressed quickly, because we can’t keep relying on goals from defence and midfield.

    1. Avatar
      Originallondonlion August 17, 2018 at 9:23 pm .

      Good point. if you were rating Bruce per his and their performance for each sector of the team it would not be even.
      Bruce is good at assessing and recruiting keepers. He sees that BumSteer are not the answer. He is equally good with CBs. I think he is poor with full backs, but the injury record means that could be harsh. Even if he was lucky, buying McGinn to replace Jack and finding he has a pair, he is good with attacking MF. Though at the second attempt – he still manged to buy 2 who have never hit the heights they were at before joining Villa.

      It is difficult to buy a decent striker who is prepared to play in the Championship. Bruce has not done so. His eye for a loan isn’t bad, Snodgrass and Grabban, were good. It is when it comes to the young forwards we have that Bruce does not have the faith, or is it the patience, to give a youngster a run and ask the team to adapt their style to the youngster’s strengths. No he fits a square peg in a round hole.

      1. Avatar
        Hitchens60 August 17, 2018 at 10:15 pm .

        OLL – can’t take issue with any of your points except I only partly agree with you on strikers. I reckon he got it spot on with Keirnan Davis and has been unlucky given his ongoing injury problems about which SB seems very concerned.

        Of course SB did not sign McCormackgate so we can ignore him. I think Hogan was a reasonable call (given your thinking) but again SB has been unlucky given his injury problems.

        Would we have signed Grabban had Dr Tony not been in the financial do do?

  8. Avatar
    Steve August 17, 2018 at 7:10 pm .

    Usually i would understand the logic of O’hare going out on loan – however bruce brought in onamah (20 last year) and gave him game time which ultimately helped spurs at the expense of players like O’hare and doyle hayes.
    I will be well pissed off if he brings somebody elses youth in this season.
    Ps O’hare knows how to pass a ball

  9. Avatar
    Holte66 August 17, 2018 at 9:22 pm .

    I agree Steve, I can understand the Tuanzebe loan deal because we are low in numbers in defence. I’ve watched O’Hare quite a few times and he is naturally gifted, like Grealish, and players like that are a rare breed. I would like to see him as back up to the likes of Grealish and McGinn. Introduce him from the bench when needed. I would be brassed off if he went out on loan and someone like Onomah came in.

  10. Avatar
    nath August 18, 2018 at 7:46 am .

    looking forward to seeing jon mcginn again today, his debut was outstanding, its hard to come in like he did and instantly be that good. if he improves further which he will, you would have thought, when he learns the strengths of his new team members. having him and grealish playing in our midfield is certainly something to be excited about.

    i thought tuanzebe played well against yeovil, he is more comfortable i think in the centre back role. apart from the odd mistake, were he should have cleared one into the stand, he tried to be smart and almost cost the team a goal, the goalie did a nice diving save to top right. his pace i feel would benefit us more than elphick or jedi as partner to chester. i hope he doesn’t get shifted to left back, hes not the most attacking player and we have enough fullbacks to play the left back role.

    another win today and our motors will really be motoring into top gear, hopefully the performances will come too, with the amount of skill in our mid, its only a matter of when it clicks. this is all above and beyond where i expected us to be this season with the shit in the summer, so everything sofar has been a bonus. also teams that lose in playoff finals, usually have a slow start in next campaign

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