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Stockbridgehibby

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  1. Yes, I believe Dean Smith was interviewed at the start of last season, where he said that SJM was brought back the season before last, while still only part fit, in order to save Villa from relegation. By the time of Villa’s status-saving run in the last few games, he had recovered some of his form. Apologies to WallisFrizz if I gave the impression of being ITK, as I have no more insight than any other fan, but with all due respect to the likes of Traore and Barclay, while they have many other qualities, pressing the game appears not to be one of them. It’s obvious that pressing can only be done by players hunting in packs, and watching Villa this season, it’s easy to see why they got overrun in midfield, with SJM a sorry figure trudging about the park often chasing only shadows. Villa have been my English team since Des Bremner, and I hope both player and club will flourish. UTV
  2. Ha ha! Don’t worry, he’s outgrown us by some considerable distance! ... actually, watching Billy Gilmour, I wondered if he, or a player like him, would solve Villa’s positional conundrums: he could bring the best out of SJM, and others...even Jack (should he stay)!
  3. I have loved watching SJM in the Premiership and I‘m convinced he sees his future as part of a successful Villa side: first promotion, then survival, consolidation, and soon challenging for a top 6 finish. I love the way Villans embraced him, and adopted the SJM anthem. He has had his struggles in the last season and a half: serious injury, being asked to return from injury sooner than was good for him, being played out of position, opponents working out some of his tricks, being too reliant on his left peg, being surrounded by midfielders who don’t share his enthusiasm for hard work and a high press. But having also been an avid follower of the comments on this forum, it’s pretty clear that a sizeable number of those commenting (about 50%?) like McGinn well enough, yet have serious reservations about his future in the side, valuing him more as a squad player at best. I would love to see Villa competing again at the very top, but wonder if both club and player would now benefit from parting company.
  4. I thought each individual Villa player had to work incredibly hard last night in an intense and enthralling game. As a team however they got overrun in midfield. I think SJM is being asked to do too much and is also being played out of position: last season he was too far advanced, now he is being asked to play too deep, though admittedly, in that position, he still put in some important blocks: one in the first half outside the box, and another in added time in the 6 yard box. Both he and Douglas were pinned back doing more defensive duties, and the ease with which Southampton carved a swathe through the midfield seemed to me more due to Traore and Barclay being fairly anonymous. I really hope this guy Sanson solves the problem for Villa and dominates central midfield. If so, Villa should end up having the great season they deserve. If that means leaving SJM out, as many posters here seem to be arguing, then I really hope, for his sake, that SJM moves on to a club where he can finally return to the left-sided central midfield position he made his own at Easter Road.
  5. Congratulations, Villa! 3 things I suggest we have learned about SJM: 1. He’s being played OUT of position - whether up front to make up for the lack of a decent striker, or on the right side of CM, where he has to come in on his left, and plays far too many square balls, and where the cross field 60 yarder just runs away from the recipient. At Hibs he played on the left side of midfield and showed a greater range of passing, including a lovely cross field long pass that curled back into the path if the on-rushing striker. 2. He’s been found OUT - players in the PL have got wise to some of his tricks. He’s still great at protecting the ball with his arse, but too often they get a boot in now, flicking the ball away. Nor should any top flight player be so one-footed; he should work on his right, and give himself more options and become less predictable. Worrying too that he came back from injury and lockdown so overweight. As someone here put it, twice the man, and half the player. 5. He’s not going OUT - finally, he’s surely not going anywhere now next season, whereas there might have been a risk of this if we went down. It would take a massive offer to take him away, and don’t think we’ll hear much more of the silly figures that were being mentioned before his injury. Time for SJM to consolidate as a PL player, at Villa, where hopefully, with some good new players around him, he can flourish. Can’t wait for the season to start - UTV
  6. Game opening up. Just up it’s us that gets the inevitable goal.
  7. Congratulations Villa - on holiday in Majorca, bought a Sky subscription just to be able to watch the game on my mobile phone while at the beach, fell out with the Mrs, who screamed at me, saying, “I thought you were a Hibby”, and went mental when SJM leapt like a fine Scottish salmon to head the ball out of the flailing arms of the statuesque Rams keeper - cue the most lusty rendition of the SJM song ever heard in the Med! Now very much looking forward to following Villa next season in the Premiership. Occasionally I look back at the original post at the start of the season when you were thinking of signing John McGinn. I think it says something like, “Anyone know much about him?”... Aye, you do now! UTV!
  8. Hé picked up a lot of yellows at Hibs but never a second yellow or a straight red (if you exclude the one that was rescinded). That suggests to me that he is more than capable of playing more cautiously when required, while still being effective. On the other hand, you could say that refs are generally more reluctant to dish out a second yellow, and therefore it may be more difficult for SJM to avoid being cautioned at all in any one game. Have tried to understand the EFL rules, and can’t believe they are so hard to find/difficult to understand. We shouldn’t have to be worrying over this!
  9. The EFL rules define the “Play-off Competition” as a separate competition, so there should be no carry over of cautions. Agree it could be more clearly stated though.
  10. Just back in Edinburgh, after a long weekend of celebrations with my new friends in the Trinity Rd Stand. The whole team played well, and it’s probably unfair to single anyone out, but I would have to mention Whelan, who was a huge improvement on what I had seen in the derby, and now at least I can understand some of the rave reviews he gets on here. Loved the stadium and the atmosphere, and looking forward to the up-coming friendly at Easter Road! UTV
  11. Thanks Jay PA and Thug for the replies to my comment above on SJM, and everyone else for the likes. I hope you can forgive all these Hibs intrusions into your domain. We do realise SJM is yours now, and hope he flourishes with Villa. Good luck tonight against Forest, and looking forward to the Middlesbrough game: 6 points would put you right back in the mix.
  12. Yet another Hibs fan here, coming down for the Middlesbrough game. Looking forward to seeing Grealish, Abraham and of course SJM - assuming he gets his game. Difficult to criticise Dean Smith for not starting him at the weekend, following the thrashing the previous week, but I would be genuinely concerned if McGinn were now thought to be a mere impact player or a super-sub or whatever. If he has a fault it may be that he tries to do too much; his best form at Hibs coming when he was complimented by excellent midfielders such as Scott Allan and Dylan McGeough. There was also a suggestion on here that SJM might have been dismissed, had he started, with comparisons being made to Roy Keane. While he certainly gets far too many yellows, I think Hibbys would be surprised that he might be regarded as some sort of hot-head: he was never red-carded at Hibs (the only one in 2015 was rescinded), and survived many, many Edinburgh derbies without getting himself sent off. Best thing about him was he played his heart out at Hibs, even when he knew he was going - he’ll do the same for you, and will see himself playing in the Premiership with Villa, not Leicester (so long as he is allowed to start occasionally!)
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