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John last won the day on August 13 2018

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  • Birthday 09/01/1957

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  1. They got a £42,500 fine for that attack on Jack last season. That will teach them a lesson!
  2. Seems I have not been anywhere near harsh enough on a couple of our lads. I struggle to see how Douglas merits a below average (6) rating after just over 10 minutes though.
  3. West Ham like Everton before them, arrived at Villa Park with some pundits talking about where an anticipated victory would leave them in the league table. The Hammers failed to leave with the three points, as had The Toffeemen, perhaps those pundits might start showing us a little bit of respect before too long. The point gained last night gives us 4 points from our first 5 games and a second successive clean sheet at home. This represents a satisfactory enough start to our season and takes us out of the relegation zone (Mind the gap Wolves!). What we now need to do is to build upon these last two home games and to stretch our unbeaten home record from two to four games. A minimum of four points and preferably all six, should be our target from our next two home games against Burnley and Brighton. It is important that we put together an unbeaten home run that will make visiting clubs aware that they are in for a battle, if they expect to leave Villa Park with anything. This team will get better as it becomes accustomed to playing alongside each other and playing in the Premier League. In the interim, we need to pick up points like this one to prevent us being left with a lot of ground to make up when we do click. West Ham will finish this season in the top half and are not a bad side, so at this stage of the season a point is not too disappointing, even when it was collected against a team that were down to 10 men from the 67th minute. We don’t seem to take much of an advantage from opponent’s being sent off and last night, was not to prove an exception. The second booking did seem harsh, but Mike Dean chose to give the benefit of the doubt, rather than a second yellow for simulation to Noble on 38 minutes when he went down inside the box. If only Kevin Friend had given the same benefit of doubt to Jack at Palace, we would now be on 5 points rather than 4. My player ratings from a game that reinforced the view that goals may prove hard to come by this year are: Tom Heaton – 6 – The quieter by some distance of the two keepers last night. Easily held a 7th minute shot from the edge of the box from Noble and a header from Taylor. Frederic Guilbert – 7 – He’s looking increasingly competent. Met a nice 33rd minute cross from Jack on the edge of the 6-yard box, but his mistimed header was easily collected by Fabianski. Bjorn Engels - 8 – MOTM – Assured, confident and has quickly developed a superb understanding with Tyrone. Faultless last night. Tyrone Mings – 8 – Made a good block on a 35th minute Noble cross and got another crucial block on a 73rd minute Haller shot inside of the box. What a partnership we now have at the centre of our defence. Neil Taylor – 6 – Reasonably solid at the back last night but will surely have a Targett on his back soon. Anwar El Ghazi – 5 – Responded petulantly when Mings berated him for not tracking Noble’s 35th minute run, moving his head towards Tyron’s face. There could only have been one winner, but he could perhaps show this sort of aggression when going for the ball in the other box, rather than when going for a colleague in his own. Looked a bit like a Joey Barton wannabee last night and VAR did look at this sorry incident, which might have earned him a red for the intent to butt. Fabianski was a determined first to a 40th minute Jota cross aimed for Anwar and left the intended recipient of the ball in a heap on his follow through. Jack had earlier played a nice 32nd minute ball to him inside the left-hand side of the box, but the ball was never quite brought under control and ran out of play. McGinn chipped a lovely ball to him that he chested down well on the edge of the box before hitting a shot that Fabianski gathered without undue concern. Marvelous Nakamba – 7 – Almost lived up to his name. A promising debut from a player who immediately looked at home as our deep lying midfielder. Could we potentially play him and Douglas, moving Jack and John a little further up? John McGinn – 7 – Hit a well struck 30-yard shot that unfortunately went straight into Fabianski’s clutches. He was found just inside the box by El Ghazi during the 1st minute of first half stoppage time. His shot took the slightest of deflections off Wesley, who was in an offside position before being kept out low at his right-hand post by Fabianski. Jack Grealish – 6 – Jota played a nice ball to Jack whose 51st minute cross was parried away at the near post by Fabianski, the loose ball was hit from just outside of the box by McGinn narrowly wide of the same post. Luiz played a nice 88th minute ball into the box that Jack stretched a leg to reach at the far post. He was only able to get a slight touch on it from 7-8 yards out, which sent the ball harmlessly wide. That had seemed to be the golden opportunity for a late winner, but I have the feeling that had he found the net, VAR might have found his toenail had strayed offside. It’s not quite happening for Jack just now is it? Jota - 6 – Ran out of steam and was substituted on 66 minutes. Hit a couple of decent crosses. Wesley – 4 – Some way below the standards he set himself with his last so impressive home performance. Headed a nice 13th minute cross from Jack over at the near post and then headed a 45th minute Jota cross tamely that Fabianski went down to his left to gather. That chance was later ruled offside by VAR. Went to ground all too easily and predictably when the ball fell towards him off a defender’s shoulder, after Davis had got a cheeky touch on El Ghazi’s 92nd minute corner. Didn’t have a lot of service but he can do better than this. Substitutes: Ahmed Elmohamady – 6 - Came on for Jota on 66 minutes, did what it says on the tin again. Douglas Luiz – Replaced Nakamba on 81 minutes. Not on quite long enough to gather a rating but stopped a dangerous looking run from Haller with a far from subtle, yet nevertheless important illegal challenge after 82 minutes. He might also have claimed an 88th minute assist when he found Jack near the far post, so he did show what we had missed in the short time he had available to do so. Keinan Davis – Replaced Guilbert on 85 minutes. Not on long enough to earn a rating. Up the Villa! John Lewis
  4. I'm a better referee than Friend, who isn't?
  5. Monday night football will bring the Hammers to Villa Park next week. We last beat them at Villa Park in 2015, having lost to them the previous season and drawn our last home league game with them on Boxing Day 2016. Overall we have won 34 and have drawn 31, of the 100 league games that there have been between the two clubs. A victory for us would even up the win records nicely. A win would also take us within a point of our visitors and up above the uncomfortable place, that we currently occupy in the early league table thanks in no small part to Kevin Friend. West Ham are a decent team and they will arrive with three points as their target, as did Everton. This will not be easy, they don't have the trio of players that won the 66 World Cup anymore, but they do have Robert Snodgrass, who will get a well deserved, warm welcome back to Villa Park. A point would be acceptable, but a win would be so much better. Just win it for us Villa!
  6. The VAR official (Andrew Madley) checked the incident and decided the verdict of simulation was fair! Referee Chris Foy has confirmed today, that if the pictures being seen by VAR don't totally contradict the referee's decision then he will not be overruled. My conclusion? Andrew Madley was more concerned about supporting a fellow referee's decision, than correcting an obvious error, unless he was auditioning for the role of Mr Magoo!
  7. On the one that I watched he also said "Kevin Friend's very close to the action there and as far as I'm concerned these things happen in football, you know. A decision has to be made. I trust the referee and I think he's one of the very, very best referees, does a very good job week in week out, he was there on the spot, he saw what he thought was an infringement and he blew for that infringement er I'm obviously more than satisfied to accept that."
  8. I feel you are wrong. I don't think that anyone on here would dispute that we were not at our best yesterday (in fact, we were quite a distance from it). Our problem is that a late goal that would have given us a point (whether we deserved it or not) was disallowed because of a howling error by the "so called referee" and that decision was allowed to stand, despite VAR being there to correct obvious errors like this one. We have every right to rant and be livid.
  9. So it was Lee Harvey Oswald, with his whistle on the grassy knoll that blew it!
  10. Old man Woy has supported Friend on Sky sports news. I didn't like him when he was England manager and I don't like him now. I'm sure he would have not been supporting the referee, had this decision gone against them. Perhaps he would have been better saying nothing, like he did in the press conference after the defeat that cost him the England job!
  11. John

    Tyrone Mings

    Couldn't happen to a nicer bloke, I'm so happy that he's got the England recognition that his performances have merited with us. I said, when we were wondering about his fee, that he would prove to be a bargain and that he would become an England player. I just didn't think that it would happen quite so quickly, but Tyrone doesn't hang about does he?
  12. Perhaps he will now that we are back in the PL and he can't use the excuse that we're not in it, as a reason not to pick our players any longer. The early signs are good, but it still helps if you are playing for one of the Sky six, as the selection of Barclay and Lingard demonstrates.
  13. So the BBC understands that the EFL have refused to rescind their decision to throw Bury out of the Football League, despite the £7m bid, that I mentioned earlier being available. A local MP (Ivan Lewis - no relation) is quoted as being "Very disappointed by EFL decision today and failure to engage seriously with a credible plan to save the club." I share his opinion. Obviously they see their decision as final, whatever the consequences for the club's fans, players and staff. Does anyone who has made that decision care about football? Or is it seen as being more important to back their own decision by killing off Bury, than to try to help a club that has a previously unbroken 125 year history of league membership? Link to the BBC Sport web-site story below: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/49509774
  14. The group that were going to buy Bury pulled out with just 90 minutes remaining, until the EFL deadline was due to expire. There were two other potential buyers, but the EFL refused to extend the deadline to give them the same opportunity to finalise a deal that the group that had pulled out at the last minute had been given. One of those two groups, deposited £7m into a bank account yesterday (within 24 hours of the deadline expiring) which was to clear Bury's debts and to meet their ongoing running costs. The EFL were therefore asked to rescind their decision to expel Bury from the league and were told that if they did, they would be able to fulfil their fixtures, starting from Saturday. There has, as yet been no response from the EFL. Are they really going to be so harsh, as to not look again at their decision to cancel Bury's membership of the Football League, rather than to extend the deadline they themselves imposed, to allow this change of ownership to happen? Or will they instead allow players and club staff to lose their jobs, as well as fans to lose their club, because of their unwillingness to change their decision to end this football club's existence?
  15. We visit Selhurst Park on Saturday and last won there in 2014. Our scorer that day, was some chap called Benteke (whatever happened to him). Overall we have won 12 and have drawn 10 of the 32 league meetings, that there have been between the two clubs. Jimmy Greaves once predicted that Palace would be "the team of the 80s", that didn't quite happen did it? Another Villa win (and we do like our winning runs) would take us two points ahead of Woy's boys. I would take a point, but a win would be much, much better and I do think our team will arrive with the confidence to go for it. Just do it for us Villa!

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