Are Aston Villa boring or consistent?
September 24, 2012 in Premier League
I, like many others recently, tend to be at the stage of falling asleep when Aston Villa hit our screens on Match of the Day. Having spent twenty years in the Premier League, having finished no higher than second (and even that was twenty years ago) and having not won a trophy since 1996, I struggle to find a good enough reason to keep my eyes open to watch Aston Villa most likely lose every Saturday night.
The Premier League is where you want your club to be as a fan. It could be argued that Aston Villa have been consistent throughout their Premier League existence, competing at the top level for so long and remaining in the best league in the world season after season. But, I’d rather my side play attractive football and get my money’s worth whilst risking relegation, than finish mid table year after year with no real hope or desire to finish any higher. But that’s just my opinion.
We all know it’s still early days in the season with their new boss, but nothing seems to have changed, Paul Lambert has just picked up where Alex McLeish left off. So far he’s guided Villa to just four points in the first five games. I can see this being another long season for Villa fans. Last season, people were quick to blame the hoofing long balls on former manager McLeish. This season, when football fans know for a fact that Paul Lambert (much like Alex McLeish to be fair) isn’t telling the players to kick the ball long, it’s becoming clear as day that the players are the problem, not the manager, and clearing out players will take time.
The club actually do possess some talented players, but just not a squad full of players good enough to progress and finish within the top eight, like a few seasons ago under Martin O’Neill. Other clubs have picked up their game and left Villa behind, which has led them into a further decline from a potential top six club to escaping relegation last year. Investment is needed if they wish to compete at the top level once again.
How much of the squad will last in the long term? I’ve heard Villa fans say they want players such as Darren Bent and Shay Given gone, wanting to start over with a new side. I’m not sure getting rid of some of the best players at the club is the way forward, but I agree how futures over some of the first team regulars should be considered. Players such as Bannan and Clark, just aren’t realistically good enough for the first team in the long run.
I think the next five league fixtures will play a big role in what Aston Villa will do this season. They have matches against West Brom, Spurs, Fulham, Norwich and Sunderland – all of which are realistically winnable, apart from Spurs I’d say. Any less than 7/8 eights points from these games would seriously worry me as a Villa fan.