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Showing content with the highest reputation on 09/02/19 in all areas

  1. 18 points
    Jurgen Klopp arrived at Liverpool on 8th October 2015. Dean Smith arrived at Villa on 10th October 2018. Let's compare their performance after 19 league games (the total number Smith has managed us in so far): Dean Smith after 19 league games: W7 D8 L4 Pts 29 Jurgen Klopp after 19 league games: W8 D5 L6 Pts 29 Klopp's Liverpool finished in 8th, behind West Ham and Southampton. That's what happens when a manager is trying to change a team's system and rebuild a squad. And his predecessor was a much more successful manager than Steve Bruce! You can't start judging any manager until he has had at least one pre-season to communicate his philosophy to the players, and a summer transfer window to tailor the squad to his system. I see a lot of similar accusations levelled at Smith that were aimed at Klopp: "Klopp can't coach a defence" - now has the best defence in the Premier League "Why is Klopp playing a striker on the wing?" - because he wanted to embed the system, and a front 3 is his main system... nobody complaining now Lack of quality and tenacity in the middle of the park - sorted over several transfer windows at great expense Poor goalkeeper - took Klopp two attempts to get this right. Wasn't fixed overnight. I'm not saying for a moment that Dean Smith is at Klopp's level, but in Championship terms, possibly he is, i.e. he could well be a Championship-winning manager. He talks a lot of sense in interviews, comes across as intelligent and popular with the players, and most of his decisions make sense. We don't know what's happening on the training ground, but the players seem to like him, even if we're a bit slow out of the blocks. The poor starts are surely down to instability in the lineup - but most of the instability in the lineup has been forced on him by injuries, transfers, and the need to fix glaring weaknesses. Just give him a chance, please.
  2. 17 points
    A week in the life of a villatalker. Monday - ‘Taylor and Hutton are atrocious, worst fullbacks in the division’ Tuesday - ‘Kodjia is awful, hasn’t been the same since his injury’ Wednesday - ‘Our midfield is abysmal. Whelan and Jedinak should never play for us again, they’re finished’ Thursday - ‘Hourihane is dreadful’ Friday - ‘Our wingers are awful, Adomah and El Ghazi are so inconsistent’ Saturday - ‘Why are we losing, we have the best squad in the division, Smith out’
  3. 13 points
    It's all complicated in my head so what I'm going to do is start with the referee, use him as an unnecessary and complicated metaphor for our performance, talk about the game a bit and about moments, lose my way, then finish in the opposite way to usual on a big fat negative, Nudge in the back. Nothing. Foul. Nothing. Good challenge. Whistle. Free kick. Take free kick. That's how it worked under this referee. Or at least that's how it worked when United had the ball. When we had the ball, it went. Nudge in the back. Nothing. Foul. Nothing. Good challenge. Whistle. Free kick.Take free kick. Whistle. Take free kick again. Have you ever watched a game where the commentary is out of synch with the visuals, so you're never sure if the commentator is commenting on what just happened or what's about to happen? He was like that with a whistle. The Dali of referees. Even so, after about an hour I'd come to notice that he'd had no real influence on the game, he was strange for everyone and the players seemed to accept it and just try to do their best around him. Of course, then he decided to pull a foul up off the top shelf for their second goal and spoil that for me. He was always a step ahead, or eight seconds behind, I'm not sure which. In many ways that's reflective of our performance in the match; we were awful, absolutely abject - but in the same way that the referee's decisions weren't influenced by play, our ability to score goals isn't in any way attached to our ability to play football - they just come, almost at random, for very little reason. For no reason at all, we fumbled our way to a corner on 81 minutes and Mings who had a decent home debut headed home, I didn't celebrate that goal because I was in a mood. Then, we started to play with a little bit more intention than we had for the rest of the second half - that annoyed me further, if you can do it, why weren't you doing it for the previous half hour? Then, sort of out of nothing a ball popped up on the back post and Tammy Abraham did his thing to put us in sight of it. I clapped reasonably politely. We weren't good enough to get back into it, we didn't deserve it and if anything United would score again to ensure that order was restored. Of course, magically that wasn't to be. Football gives you moments as a fan, things you remember, things you'll take with you to the end of your footballing days - moment when you're bellowing like a donkey with its cock on fire and throwing your arms around like one of those inflatable things you sometimes see outside car hypermarkets, moments where you forget where you are, who you are, what you've got to do tomorrow, that you're in your forties, that you have been in a mood for 90 minutes - everything. Moments that take you away and make you part of something that's just.....wonderful. I had a bit of a moment when we equalised. Andre Green slid directly at me and the players celebrated right of front of my moment. I had an eye contact moment with Glenn Whelan, it was unnerving but special. We were as one. It was only a moment, I'm sure Glenn is over it. It left me breathless; that's a first for him. Some fans left after United's second goal, an awful lot left after the third goal - those that left after the full time whistle bounced out of Villa Park with manic grins and red faces - shared moments, moments for themselves, times to remember. And that's why it's complicated - to try to separate the moment from the game, the magic from the underlying performance, because lets be in no doubt about it, this was a terrible performance - Taylor was poor, Jedinak showed that his next move should be retirement, the limitations of our midfield were exposed, Kodjia was half arsed and ineffective, El Ghazi hit-and-miss, Abraham alone. Individually we were second best and as a team we were miles away from the opposition - they opened brightly and passed the ball round us like we were cones, at times it was dazzling, but you always felt both team were contributing to it. We were still in the game at half time because we'd worked our magic over forty-five minutes and made them worse. If anything we were worse after the break, we lack energy and spark, we lack the ability to pass and keep the ball, we have a manager famed for a pass-and-move approach and either he's gone off the idea or they aren't listening, because the only passing we do is around our back four and even then we look like we're about to lose it at any moment, especially when the big Aussie in front of them has never been able to pass and is rapidly losing the ability to move. Ultimately today, we've got another draw - and as magical as the moment was, it's probably a draw that in the cold light of day puts an end to our hopes of reaching the playoffs. We should have had a penalty and they should have had a goal disallowed twice, but we haven't been unlucky, quite the opposite - we've robbed Sheffield of a win and their fans of their own table topping moment. If I had an ounce of decency, I'd apologise to Sheffield United. We're a long way short of being a good Championship team and if we're to compete for the playoffs next season, we'll need to replace eight of this first eleven - given that half of them are retiring or on loan, we'll need to replace almost that many just to have a team, and before you start - there are no kids. There's no one ready to step in next weekend and make us better. We're playing badly, we're badly organised, we have an ageing and disjointed squad and we're being propped up by loanees. We play two good sides next and I fear for us a little bit, and yet I know in five years time I'll have forgotten that and I'll still remember me and Andre, me and Glenn. It's a curious and magical game this thing of ours. I don't think dark times have ever been quite so much fun.
  4. 12 points
    Maybe I’m wrong, and it seems a lot of people disagree with me but I think Smith is getting a hell of a lot from a very poor squad of players. I’m looking forward to seeing what he can achieve when he’s given time to get rid of the likes of Taylor, Hutton and Jedinak and bring in his own players. If we’re still poor then, I agree, we should look to get rid of Smith but calling for his head now is utter lunacy.
  5. 10 points
    As an Aussie I find it very hard to criticise Jedinak at all, he has been an absolute warrior for my country and was a very decent premier league footballer. So I say this with a heavy heart, please DS never ever play him again, if we are that desperate then put a kid in there to see what they can do. Mile if you happen to read this, I'm sorry
  6. 8 points
    Managed to watch the game last night and knowing you have this thread I spent the first 80 minutes wondering who would get MOM! The team were playing so poorly, the ref was poor ( I don't think in this day and age many refs would have allowed their second goal.......gone are the days of Nat Lofthouse et al bundling the ball and goalkeeper over the line to score and invariably in 50.50's they side with the goalkeeper) and there was no spark with the midfield certainly second to everything. McGinn would have been used to much of the play as for a long spell the main ball being played was a diagonal to Hutton......at Hibs it was always a diagonal ball to David Gray as the only out ball we seemed to have......predictable for the opposition. At that point I almost turned it off.....but am glad I didn't.....what an ending and shows how much confidence and belief is part of the game. Once one went in Sheff United started to sit deeper and once the second was scored you could see the Villa players begin to believe and United defenders became a little panicky culminating in the mis-kick that McGinn pounced on got to the line and put in the perfect cross for the third. You never know this may get the team going for a push towards the play offs. If they can do this against one of the top sides in the league then who knows? Sort of result that gets the dressing room and fans buzzing even though it was only one point. As for McGinn, thought he had a poor game till the last 10 when he got on the ball a bit more and then made the equaliser. Smith seems to have him playing quite far forward, certainly from when he first came to you ( and for us) and much of the game seemed to pass him by and wasn't involved in many midfield tussles and not much opportunity to use that famous arse of his! I noticed in one or two 50.50 balls he didn't go flying in like he used to which of course often got him a yellow.......perhaps the coaching team are sorting this side of his game but am not sure his best position is so far forward in the midfield. Many times he was waiting in the box for crosses and passes to come in where in the past he would be the one running with the ball into the box and to the line to cross and trying to make things happen for others. Up to 80 minutes I had Mings down as MOM and still believe he deserved it at the end especially as his goal started the comeback.....looks a good player. 'mon Villa , kick on from here.
  7. 8 points
    I think some need to accept that things have completely changed. RDM and Bruce were both hired to get us straight back up and were given plenty of cash to throw at the problem. Both failed and have left another mess, similar to when we were relegated. It sounds like our new owners are not going to make the same mistake. There is now a long term idea with no throwing bad money away desperate for short term glory. Smith may not be the right man but he has been hired to do a different job than RDM and Bruce. He is here to build and coach HIS team.
  8. 8 points
    What a garbage post - you just have a massive grudge against the guy for some unknown reason. All managers have to start somewhere, you don't just get given big jobs.
  9. 8 points
    Top post. Unfortunately, there are a few clowns on here who think we have the best squad in the league and should be challenging for the title In reality of course, we have a hugely imbalanced squad with a handful of players who shouldn’t still be playing football at this level. Smith needs time to change this and im willing to give him it. He comes across extremely well in his interviews and I for one think he will be a success here. UTV.
  10. 8 points
    I actually like him. I do think much of his inconsistency is due to shit fullbacks and still needing time to settle in a team which is very inconsistent. He's still also quite young so I would be more patient with him. . I also think he thrives when we move the ball quicker and he has movement around him. Having a good AM like Jack floating around gives him space to run into more instead of being channelled out wide constantly which is what I think is happening with him recently. I think his delivery is pretty good too. Loads of areas to improve but far from the shit heap of players we do have.
  11. 7 points
    We'd have never guessed.
  12. 7 points
    To be fair to @Demitri_C here, we were 3-0 down on 82 minutes, 1/4 of the stadium had already gone by that point and you could see why. It was awful, I missed the second half myself as I had fell asleep at half time, no word of a lie. So I also missed the mighty comeback Was you're train journey also a factor Dem? Some fans have to get certain trains at certain times and if you miss one you risk ballsing ya journey up and chances are you either are faced with a very expensive taxi home or a night in the train station. Combine the two, it's the fact it's a night game is the problem for many folk, let alone being 3-0 down. Well done to everyone that does make the effort to go on these games, especially from London and afar. Given our form of late, that it's on TV and it's an evening KO it was still looking a massive turnout considering these factors. Well Done all that did attend.
  13. 7 points
    The same people criticising Smith are the same ones posting about how bad Jedinak, Taylor, Hutton, Hourihane and Whelan are in their respective threads. Its almost as if we all agree we have a terrible squad but we’re blaming Smith for not doing more with it. Why can’t we just give the bloke a chance to clearout the overpaid, ageing dross and bring in the players he wants?
  14. 7 points
    Perhaps you would like to do him the courtesy of giving him some time to sort out the mess he inherited, like you did to the very end with the last manager.
  15. 6 points
    No he really isn't, he's trolling and has been since joining. Just ignore.
  16. 6 points
  17. 6 points
    I think he will be ok with the pressure he’s a strong character and I firmly believe given time and maybe another coach alongside him he will get you to the PL.Minimum must be given next season.
  18. 6 points
    If you get shot of DS before he’s had time to work with better players then your owners need to be held to account.I posted on here when he joined about the set up he left at Brentford where none of the players he inherited or were signed during his time were from Prem league or even the championship they were from lower leagues or abroad the majority being under 22.He has inherited the opposite at Villa and it’s obvious you have too many players at the end of their careers or on loan(something we stopped doing 2 years ago)Would expect Dean to be asking what the director of football is doing regarding getting good young players signed for him to work with.
  19. 6 points
  20. 6 points
    I'll say it again, our most underrated player. Unfortunately his legs let him down these days so he runs out of steam. But he does his job when he's fresh. He's too old to be our first choice these days. We need someone new and young there. But he gets way more stick than he deserves.
  21. 6 points
  22. 5 points
    Absolutely. Throwing everything at it, with a nothing to lose attitude, is down to the quality of players getting it done without shackles. The first 80 minutes - and most minutes of all games - we don't look good because the tactics are abysmal.
  23. 5 points
    I can’t believe there are some people on here with such an anti Smith agenda.. What he’s done to deserve this level of animosity I’ll never know. The squad is ageing, unbalanced and totally unsuited to what he, and notably the board, are trying to achieve. One January window, after a summer during which we were almost bankrupted by the previous regime, isn’t enough time to do anything other than try to plug gaps. Everyone knows that January is a difficult window to do business in and I don’t think the board were prepared to splash money on short term fixes. They are extremely ambitious, but also realistic. We finally have owners with a credible plan that are sensible enough to know that time will be needed to implement the radical changes that are essential for the future success of this club both on and off the pitch. They won’t be sentimental, Dean Smith will be given time and support to prove himself or not as the case may be, but they appointed him and won’t have done it on a whim. I know we live in a world of instant gratification, but that is generally only available on the internet, reality takes a little longer. Sorry to disappoint.
  24. 5 points
  25. 5 points
    I left and like you said 1/4 left. But a lot left once the third went on straight away. I don't blame those as come on we were pathetic for 80 minutes of that game. It was journey home weather and frustration. I don't want to make excuses but I wss very frustrated yesterday. I don't mind losing as long as we at least play but bloody hell in those 79minutes we were absolutely hopeless. You mean Sheffield United made two massive mistakes that we capitalised on. Don't blame the fans it shouldn't take the players 80 minutes to start playing football. Imagine if we started like we did in the 80th minute?? We could have been going home with the points not one.
  26. 5 points
  27. 4 points
    Can't help himself can he?
  28. 4 points
    He will not get 20 Goals a season playing with an attitude that he has....you have to show intensity and urgency, play with desire and FORCE issues, Put your opponent under pressure and force them in to errors, like Billy Sharp does. He is full of melancholy and plays like it. He has the talent........He simply hasn't got the approach mate.
  29. 4 points
    I’m in camp 3, mate. The one where I’ll support the manager because he’s having to deal with the mess Bruce left us in and the one that acknowledges we have a load of s*** players who are here for a pay cheque. It’s also the camp that understands our best player is injured. Of course Smith can do wrong, and I’ll criticise him when his squad of players isn’t performing. F*** me, Guardiola couldn’t get a tune out of our wingers and full backs, I genuinely don’t know what you expect Smith to do.
  30. 4 points
    You are correct Villa aren't a bad side and most of this league would love to have the squad we have. The thing is Villa fans are currently divided into 2 camps, camp 1 are big Smith fans and are totally closed to the idea that Smith can do any wrong, whilst the other camp (which i'm in) are still on Smiths side but are open to the idea that he can get things wrong. The problem is camp 1 were the ones that have been championing Smith for ages before he came here and were also the ones that were declaring our squad is the best in this league and that Smith would be able to do loads better with it. But now that we are getting worse and worse they seem to have done a 180 and are declaring that our squad is rubbish in order to defends Smiths performances. And i totally agree with your side note, Mings is class tall, strong, quick and vocal exactly the qualities you want in a defender.
  31. 4 points
    Joins the small list of players we want to keep.
  32. 4 points
    £7m wasted and we need a new keeper in the summer , I’d be tempted to put Steer in goal over Dracula Kalinic let’s hope our DofF does a bit more work next time rather than just picking up the previous scouting teams shopping list that he found in a drawer
  33. 4 points
    Jesus I gave the referee very poor before I watched any of the telly. I knew he'd failed to give a ridiculous foul on Kodjia in the lead up to their second but even having given the very poor rating we need something new to demote his performance even more in the light of the goal being awarded having being kicked out of the keepers hands and the nailed on blatant penalty right in his line of site in the 88th minute. It's impossible to believe anyone could have a worse game.
  34. 4 points
  35. 4 points
    Amazing how they spotted the ball had gone 2 inches over the line for there first but couldn't spot somebody having there shirt pulled off or the ball being kicked out the goalies hand☹☹
  36. 4 points
    I'm the same with Esso mate, just something about those forecourts I don't trust.
  37. 4 points
    I left at 79 minutes. So I travelled all the way from London in the freezing cold getting wet to watch us lose 3-0 then I miss all **** three goals! Serves me right You a holes villa!!!
  38. 4 points
    I haven’t been to VP for almost 10 years. I tried to leave at 72 mins and my two mates (not even Villa fans) made me stay. Thank god they did!!! There’s a lesson for you!!! Special mention for Hourihane. Tremendously awful footballer. He’s even worse in person. Hutton and McGinn both solid and never gave up. Make no mistake though that was awful. Smith has a lot of work to do. For 80 minutes we didn’t even look like a football team. We CANNOT keep conceding so many. Also, they ran out of balti pies. That was the most heartbreaking part of the whole experience. Anyway, that was amazing. I won’t leave it 10 years this time.
  39. 4 points
    Before the game most people were asking for Kodja to start. We’ll from my point of view I hope he never starts again. No interest in the team only out for himself. No tracking back, and no desire to try and win the ball back once he’s lost it. I only hope Smith has seen this and the Green keeps fit to keep him out. As for Jedinak.............. If Smith has learnt anything I hope it’s that these two only ever start if we have a decimated squad. The ref was a disgrace.
  40. 4 points
    On Dean Smith's performance, I think the only clear mistake he made in terms of team selection was bringing Jedinak in. He doesn't look fit, was off the pace, and then picked up a pointless yellow card. Whelan isn't a great option, but when he came on we looked much sharper in the middle. You can argue about the Kodjia selection, but the logic of that made sense to me. Mings signing looks smart, as does bringing Green back. DS clearly hasn't lost the dressing room - El Ghazi lost the ball at one point and tracked back most of the length of the pitch to win it back. The spirit at the end to bring the result back showed real passion and belief. I also thought Hutton had a decent game going forward, although not perfect defensively. Things that bothered me: We had a plan from the outset to play the diagonal ball over their RCB. Fine, you've identified a weakness, but we kept doing it over and over again, from all over the pitch. If your wingers are your best attacking threat, then it makes sense, but basically we were removing McGinn from the game and conceding possession. We don't play like this when we have Grealish in the team. Neil Taylor's positioning just absolute dog shit as usual. On their 2nd or 3rd goal (can't remember which) he comes charging out to mark the wide man and leaves a massive gap between him and Mings, which their midfielder runs into (admittedly Jedinak doesn't track the run, but I think he's expecting the defence to deal with it). This is basic full back defending (the position Taylor has somehow played all his life) - if you have a choice, stay narrow. Don't go wide unless the ball is wide, or you're in possession. Hourihane hasn't got it. Great set piece delivery, but he gave away a pointless foul in the run up to the first goal. The refereeing. Offside and foul for second goal. Two pens for us imo, expect at least one of them to be given. Jedinak should retire. I was hopeful when I saw him in the lineup, because we've needed someone to have a good game in that possession, but he looked well off the pace, both physically and in terms of his attitude. Didn't show any desire.
  41. 4 points
    Underserved but players probably stopped listening to the manager.
  42. 4 points
    Went to the gym earlier, while working out I noticed a hole in my trainer... just big enough to get my finger in. So anyway... she's made a formal complaint and now I'm banned for life.
  43. 3 points
    I am not happy with how things are going, the issue is most if not all managers in this league know their best elevens and even who to bring in when there are injuries. Dean is constantly forced to field different players every week, a lot of that is down to injury, he's been playing Chester not 100% fit as he's had no other options, he now has Mings available and maybe further down the line he'll have Hause. He's had to re-integrate Elphick, who to be fair has done well plus a new keeper who the jury is out on but seems on paper a good signing, this after Nyland who was finally starting to do well was ruled out for the season. He's never found a solution to losing Axel and Grealish, our two best players on the ball. Lansbury got a chance then got injured, for some reason he has then toiled with more defensive midfielders playing what feels high pressing roles, Whelan has done ok at times but he doesn't last 90 mins and can be pretty slow, Jed finally got his chance after months of injury and looked terrible, Thor got some game time and looked average. Carroll is injured already. If you look in attack you'll see Adomah is chronically out of form, Kodjia and El Ghazi aren't much better. Connor contributes set pieces and that's about all recently, he needs dropping but there always seems to be few better options. Hutton and Taylor continue to be liabilities in defence, but at least Hutton offers a lot going forward. Maybe if Hause or Chester come into the team then Taylor at least will get dropped. Getting Green and Grealish back in the team could be huge as along with Mings there is players who can improve us. My point is even though I feel Dean's management has been average at best for some time, I do feel that he has inherited a chronically unbalanced squad and although you can clearly see he is trying to work out his best eleven, he is fighting a losing battle and is getting precious little luck along the way. I have seen enough tactically from him to know the type of positive, pressing attacking football he wants to play and some of the victories under him so far have been amongst the best football we have played in a stupidly long time. The amount of goals we concede is worrying but again I can see that Dean is trying to address that. We went for proven promotion experience with Bruce and it failed, before that we went with a Champion's League Winner in RDM that was even worse, I don't want to mention the idiots in charge before those two, but there has to come a point where we build for the long term, doesn't mean we can't criticise Dean, doesn't mean we don't want more from him and these players, but the never ending cycle of sacking managers and bombing out players has to end.
  44. 3 points
    McGinn’s positioning in midfield is down to Grealish’s absence, he’ll go back to just doing two jobs when Jack is back!
  45. 3 points
    It's not just unicorns, Brexiteers believe in ferries too.
  46. 3 points
    Jedinak should be dropped, Green should start and the ref should be shot! UTV!
  47. 3 points
    I thought the crowd were well up for it tonight but a lack lustre effortless start to the game set the tone and the whole thing went downhill. As fans of any club what you hate to see is a lack of effort and there were a few tonight who seemed to be going through the motions and no supporter is going to stand for that. Numbers wise both home and away the support has been unreal. Give us something to get behind and the atmosphere will be great, as those who stayed tonight showed. Serve up clueless, effortless crap and of course fans will get frustrated and the atmosphere turn a little toxic. The onus is on the players to set the tone. They show they are giving their all and having a real go we'll back them.
  48. 3 points
    He's just so easy to dislike. Watched him closely a few times and as usual the effort he puts in to ensure he's not going to receive the ball is astonishing. Peripheral player who only shows any desire when we win a free kick on the edge of the box. He doesn't have the heart or grit. Cannot be a starter for much longer.
  49. 3 points
    I turned off in disgust after 81 minutes. Did I miss anything?
  50. 3 points
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