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Found 54 results

  1. So far we have... Doyle Hayes at Cheltenham Green at Preston Sarkic at Livingston Livingston have actually been playing in the Scottish League Cup and Sarkic has been seeing some action... Sarkic (Livingston) 13/07 - Away at Falkirk (1-1p) - Played 90 minutes. Conceded a 90th minute equaliser after parrying a shot and conceding on the rebound. Saved 2 penalties in the penalty shootout victory. 16/07 - Home to Ayr (2-1) - Unused substitute. 23/07 - Away at Stranraer (1-2) - Unused substitute. 27/07 - Home to Berwick (5-0) - Played 90 minutes.
  2. Your ratings and reactions please. Keep it respectful even if you know everyone else is wrong. The players' names will be added to the poll when a mod gets chance.
  3. Thought it would be nice to collect amusing examples of people accusing us of doing a Fulham this season, as I imagine we'll be hearing this for at least the next 6 months (or forever, if we actually do a Fulham). Looking forward to the We're Doing A Fulham chants when we're three goals up against Wolves. Starting with last week's classic from Fat Sam. https://talksport.com/football/577298/aston-villa-fulham-spending-summer/ Keep them coming...
  4. I wonder if it will be those 3 stripes?.. To answer their question. If the kit is shit I wouldn't buy it no matter who made it. Equally, I wouldn't want someone like Slazenger or someone shit suddenly developing our kit either.
  5. Might as well start. According to the Birmingham Mail we are interested in Barnsley defender Liam Lindsey. He has a girls name so seem to be in line with previous transfer strategy. Anyone seen him play?
  6. Aston Villa statistics : 2019/2020 Premier League 2 - Division 2 - Under-23 development league TABLE (as of 17/09/2019) P W D L F A GD Pts 1 Manchester United 5 4 1 0 14 2 +12 13 2 West Ham United 5 4 1 0 12 3 +9 13 3 Stoke City 5 3 1 1 9 5 +4 10 4 Middlesbrough 5 3 1 1 9 8 +1 10 5 Reading 5 3 0 2 13 6 +7 9 6 West Bromwich Albion 5 2 0 3 10 10 0 6 7 Newcastle United 5 2 0 3 6 15 -9 6 8 Norwich City 5 1 2 2 7 8 -1 5 9 Aston Villa 5 1 2 2 4 6 -2 5 10 Swansea City 5 1 1 3 7 13 -6 4 11 Fulham 5 1 0 4 3 9 -6 3 12 Sunderland 5 0 1 4 5 14 -9 1 PLAYER Nat A(S) A-Mid 0-1 A-Swa 1-1 H-Nor 1-1 A-Sun 2-1 A-Sto 0-2 H-MU A-WBA H-Ful A-Rea H-New A-WHU H-Mid H-Swa H-Sun A-Nor H-WBA A-Ful H-Rea A-New H-WHU H-Sto A-MU Marchall, Filip (GK) 0 (0) u Nyland, Ørjan (GK) 1 (0) S Searle, Jamie (GK) 0 (0) u u u Sinisalo, Viljami (GK) 4 (0) S S u S S Bazeley-Graham, Isaiah (RB) 2 (0) S S u Bridge, Mungo (LB) 4 (0) S S S S u Revan, Dominic (CB) 3 (1) u o S S S Suliman, Easah (CB) 5 (0) S S S S S Walker, Jake (RB) 5 (0) S S S S S Birch, Jack (CM) 1 (0) u u S u Brunt, Lewis (CM) 4 (1) S S S o S Clarke, Jack (CM) 3 (1) o S S S Ramsey, Jacob (ACM) 4 (1) S o S S S Rowe, Callum (CM) 1 (1) o u S Vassilev, Indiana (LW) 3 (2) S S o o S Archer, Cameron (F) 4 (0) S S S S Guy, Ben (F) 1 (3) o o o S u Odutayo, Colin (F) 1 (1) S u o Tait, Michael (F) 5 (0) S S S S S Wright, Tyreik (F) 4 (0) S S S S Name in BOLD played in >= 50% of games = Goal(s) scored = Assist(s) created S = Started o = Came On u = Unused Sub # TOP SCORERS Gls 1 Guy, Ben 1 1 Ramsey, Jacob 1 1 Archer, Cameron 1 1 Tait, Michael 1 # TOP ASSISTS Ast 1 Ramsey, Jacob 2 2 Revan, Dominic 1 FIXTURES/RESULTS 09/08/2019 Heritage Park @ 19:00 Middlesbrough 1-0 Aston Villa ATT : 175 91' Liddle, Ben (p) 19/08/2019 Landore Training Ctr @ 19:00 Swansea City 1-1 Aston Villa ATT : 278 08' Evans, Keiran 52' Tait, Michael (Ramsey) 24/08/2019 Villa Park @ 15:00 Aston Villa 1-1 Norwich City ATT : 332 47' Archer, Cameron 73' Fitzpatrick, Aidan (Lomas) 30/08/2019 Stadium of Light @ 19:00 Sunderland 1-2 Aston Villa ATT : 349 25' Ramsey, Jacob (Revan) 36' Guy, Ben (Ramsey) 44' Mbunga-Kimpioka, Benjamin (Dunne) 16/09/2019 Leek Town @ 19:00 Stoke City 2-0 Aston Villa 17' Campbell, Tyrese (p) 26' Campbell, Tyrese 23/09/2019 Banks's Stadium @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Manchester United 30/09/2019 Aggborough @ 19:00 West Bromwich Albion - Aston Villa 21/10/2019 Villa Park @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Fulham 28/10/2019 Adams Park @ 19:00 Reading - Aston Villa 04/11/2019 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Newcastle United 22/11/2019 Dagenham & Redbridge @ 19:00 West Ham United - Aston Villa 09/12/2019 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Middlesbrough 16/12/2019 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Swansea City 06/01/2020 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Sunderland 10/01/2020 Colney Training Ctr @ 14:00 Norwich City - Aston Villa 03/02/2020 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - West Bromwich Albion 14/02/2020 Motspur Park @ 19:00 Fulham - Aston Villa 02/03/2020 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Reading 13/03/2020 Northumberland FA @ 19:00 Newcastle United - Aston Villa 06/04/2020 Villa Park @ 19:00 Aston Villa - West Ham United 20/04/2020 Bodymoor Heath @ 19:00 Aston Villa - Stoke City 01/05/2020 Old Trafford @ 19:00 Manchester United - Aston Villa Aston Villa statistics : 2019/2020 Premier League Cup Premier League Cup : Group D P W D L F A GD Pts 1 Aston Villa 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 Doncaster Rovers 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 Exeter City 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 Portsmouth 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 PLAYER Nat A(S) # PL CUP SCORERS Gls # PL CUP ASSISTS Gls PL CUP FIXTURES/RESULTS Aston Villa statistics : 2019/2020 EFL Trophy EFL Trophy : Northern Group C P W D L F A GD Pts 1 Salford City 1 1 0 0 2 0 +2 3 2 Tranmere Rovers 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 Aston Villa 1 0 0 1 0 2 -2 0 EFL TROPHY FIXTURES/RESULTS 03/09/2019 Peninsula Stadium @ 19:45 Salford City 2-0 Aston Villa Att : 916 80' Lloyd, Danny (p) 82' Rooney, Adam 08/10/2019 Prenton Park @ 19:45 Tranmere Rovers Aston Villa # EFL TROPHY SCORERS Gls PLAYER Nat A(S) A-Sal 0-2 A-Tra Marchall, Filip (GK) 0 (0) u Searle, Jamie (GK) 1 (0) S Bridge, Mungo (LB) 0 (0) u Revan, Dominic (CB) 1 (0) S Suliman, Easah (CB) 1 (0) S Walker, Jake (RB) 1 (0) S Birch, Jack (CM) 1 (0) S Brunt, Lewis (CM) 1 (0) S Chukwuemeka, Carney (CM) 0 (0) u Clarke, Jack (CM) 1 (0) S Hayden, Kaine (CM) 0 (0) u Philogene-Bidace, Jaden (LW) 0 (1) o Rowe, Callum (CM) 1 (0) S Archer, Cameron (F) 1 (0) S Guy, Ben (F) 0 (1) o Pressley, Aaron (F) 0 (0) u Tait, Michael (F) 1 (0) S Wright, Tyreik (F) 1 (0) S Youngest PLAYER DOB APPS 1 Sohna, Harrison (CM) 01/07/2002 0 (0-0-0) 2 Pressley, Aaron (F) 07/11/2001 0 (0-0-0) 3 Sinisalo, Viljami (GK) 11/10/2001 4 (4-0-1) 4 Wright, Tyreik (F) 22/09/2001 4 (4-0-0) 5 Ónodi, Ákos (GK) 02/09/2001 0 (0-0-0) 6 Sea, Dimitri (F) 20/08/2001 0 (0-0-0) 7 Archer, Cameron (F) 21/07/2001 4 (4-0-0) 8 Ramsey, Jacob (ACM) 28/05/2001 5 (4-1-0) 9 Burton, Bradley (CB) 06/04/2001 0 (0-0-0) 10 Odutayo, Colin (F) 08/03/2001 2 (1-1-1) 11 Vassilev, Indiana (LW) 16/02/2001 5 (3-2-0) 12 Farr, Charlie (CM) 07/02/2001 0 (0-0-0) 13 Tait, Michael (F) 29/01/2001 5 (5-0-0) 14 Birch, Jack (CM) 23/11/2000 1 (1-0-3) 15 Patterson, Ethan (CB) 12/11/2000 0 (0-0-0) 16 Brunt, Lewis (CM) 06/11/2000 5 (4-1-0) 17 Walker, Jake (RB) 03/11/2000 5 (5-0-0) 18 Guy, Ben (F) 02/11/2000 4 (1-3-1) 19 McConnachie, Charlie (RB) 21/10/2000 0 (0-0-0) 20 Revan, Dominic (CB) 19/09/2000 4 (3-1-1) 21 Bridge, Mungo (LB) 12/09/2000 4 (4-0-1) 22 Hooper, Anton (RW) 07/02/2000 0 (0-0-0) 23 Bazeley-Graham, Isaiah (RB) 03/02/2000 2 (2-0-1) 24 Rowe, Callum (CM) 02/09/1999 2 (1-1-1) 25 Clarke, Jack (CM) 30/01/1999 4 (3-1-0) 26 Suliman, Easah (CB) 26/01/1998 5 (5-0-0) 27 Nyland, Ørjan (GK) 10/09/1990 1 (1-0-0) 28 Marchall, Filip (GK) N/A 0 (0-0-1) 29 Searle, Jamie (GK) N/A 0 (0-0-3) 30 Chukwuemeka, Carney (CM) N/A 0 (0-0-0) 31 Hayden, Kaine (CM) N/A 0 (0-0-0) 32 Philogene-Bidace, Jaden (LW) N/A 0 (0-0-0)
  7. Early days I know but with players being told about their futures today and tomorrow then we should have a good idea about what squad we have left and what gaps are to be filled in due course. I reckon by 1st June this will be our squad remaining. I will assume that Gardner, McCormack, Tshibola won't get a look in. I am confident we will sign at least Hause and El Ghazi and most probably Mings but I will leave him out for now. GKs Steer Kalinic Nyland RBs Elmo Guiilbert Bree LBs Taylor CBs Chester Hause RM Adomah Green LM El Ghazi CM Grealish McGinn Hourihane Lansbury Thor CF Kodjia Davis Hogan Questions: 1. Who would you sell? 2. Anyone with expiring contract that you would retain? (I have assumed Steer will stay) 3. What positions are key? For me: 1. Adomah, Lansbury, Thor, Hogan 2. Only Steer - no room for sentiment so no Whelan for me 3. LB, CB, DM, RM and ST - Ming is the obvious one for CB but we will still need to sign another 1 or 2 depending on Chester. LB needs to be a big signing, a modern full back. DM is the key position as Hourihane is a great option but we need better in the PL imo. RM - Lolley, Bowen etc. Striker - I wouldn't go for Abraham personally. Maupay for me.
  8. Villa v West Ham Please do not mention streams or streaming in this thread. Please note that there is no distinction between legal or illegal, video or audio. If you aren't sure, it doesn't go in this thread. You will receive warning points if you ignore this.
  9. Lots of clubs have already dropped their kits for next season so might as well get started while we wait for our new Kappa? kits. Hopefully it's better than this unfortunate ones by Jako? for Barnet FC that seem to have been run over by a car or possibly a couple of scooters on their way to delivery.
  10. Hello my Villa Friends, I read from AVFC web page that they start selling tickets for individual games only five weeks before the game. Is this true? Living abroad, that is quite late for me to commit.
  11. Your ratings and reactions please. Keep it respectful even if you know everyone else is wrong. The players' names will be added to the poll when a mod gets chance.
  12. This poll will be open for the first week of the month.
  13. Crystal Palace v Villa Please do not mention streams or streaming in this thread. Please note that there is no distinction between legal or illegal, video or audio. If you aren't sure, it doesn't go in this thread. You will receive warning points if you ignore this.
  14. It worked last week. Don't @ me. (Looking at you BOF)
  15. Group A: Sevilla, APOEL, Qarabag, Dudelange Group B: Dynamo Kiev, FC Copenhagen, Malmo, Lugano Group Basel, Krasnodar, Getafe, Trabzonspor Group Sporting, PSV, Rosenborg, LASK Group E: Lazio, Celtic, Rennes, Cluj Group F: Arsenal, Frankfurt, Standard Liege, Vitoria Group G: Porto, Young Boys, Feyenoord, Rangers Group H: CSKA Moscow, Ludogorets, Espanyol, Ferencvaros Group I: Wolfsburg, Gent, St-Etienne, Olexandriya Group J: Roma, Borussia Monchengladbach, Istanbul Basakehir, Wolfsberg Group K: Besiktas, Braga, Wolves, Slovan Bratislava Group L: Manchester United, Astana, Partizan, AZ Alkmaar
  16. Group A PSG Real Madrid Club Brugge Galatasaray Group B Bayern Munich Spurs Olympiacos Crvena Zvezda Group C Man City Shakhtar Donetsk Dynamo Zargreb Atlanta Grouo D Juentus Athletes Madrid Bayer Leverkusen Lokomotiv Moscow Group E Liverpoll Napoli Salzburg Genk Group F Barcalona Dortmund Inter Millan Slavia Prague Group G Zenit Benfica Lyon Leipzig Group H Chelsea Ajax Valencia Lille
  17. As Villa are one of the invited teams into this season's EFL trophy I figured there'd be some interest in the competition. 48 league clubs and 16 invited academies (we're one of the invited academies...) split into a Northern & Southern softies section. Northern Section Group A: Grimsby Town, Scunthorpe United, Sunderland, Leicester City Group B: Accrington Stanley, Oldham Athletic, Fleetwood Town, Liverpool Group C Bury, Salford City, Tranmere Rovers, ASTON VILLA Group D Port Vale, Shrewsbury Town, Macclesfield Town, Newcastle United Group E: Crewe Alexandra, Burton Albion, Mansfield Town, Everton Group F: Bolton Wanderers, Bradford City, Rochdale. Manchester City Group G: Blackpool, Carlisle United, Morecambe, WolveW Group H: Doncaster Rovers, Rotherham United, Lincoln City, Mancheter United Invited clubs: 1) Aston Villa, 2) Everton, 3) Leicester City, 4) Liverpool, 5) Manchester City, 6) Manchester United, 7) Newcastle United, 8 ) Wolverhampton Wanderers. Southern Section Group A: Gillingham, Colchester United, Ipswich Town, Tottenham Hotspur Group B: Crawley Town, Portsmouth, Oxford United, Norwich City Group C Leyton Orient, AFC Wimbledon, Southend United, Brighton & HA Group D Coventry City, Forest Green Rovers, Walsall, Southampton Group E: Exeter City, Cheltenham Town, Newport County, Wet Spam Group F: Swindon Town, Bristol Rovers, Plymouth Argyle, Chelsea Group G: Stevenage, MK Dons, Wycombe Wanderers, Fulham Group H: Peterborough United, Cambridge United, Northampton Town, Arsenal Invited clubs: 1) Arsenal, 2) Brighton & Hove Albion, 3) Chelsea, 4) Fulham, 5) Norwich City, 6) Southampton, 7) Tottenham Hotspur, 8 West Ham United.
  18. A good way of assessing how well players are playing albeit stats don't show the whole picture. After GW3 R Player CM KG Apps Mins Goals Assists Yel Red SpG PS% AerialsWon MotM Rating 1 John McGinn24, M(C) 178 68 3 270 1 1 - - 2.7 75.3 0.7 1 7.48 2 Tyrone Mings26, D(CL) 196 77 3 270 - 1 - - - 72.5 3.3 - 7.42 3 Frederic Guilbert24, D(CLR),M(R) 178 70 1 90 - - 1 - 1 75 2 - 7.16 4 Conor Hourihane28, DMC 180 62 1 82 - - - - - 88 - - 7.06 5 Jack Grealish23, AM(CL) 175 68 3 270 - 1 - - 1.3 86.1 0.3 - 6.99 6 Björn Engels24, D(C) 193 83 3 270 - - - - 0.3 86.5 4.7 - 6.95 7 Wesley22, FW 191 93 3 254 1 - - - 1.7 71.1 2 - 6.81 8 Jota28, AM(CLR) 180 70 1(2) 124 - 1 - - 0.3 80 0.3 - 6.67 9 Trézéguet24, AM(LR) 180 71 3 232 - - 1 - 1.7 80 2 - 6.67 10 Ahmed El Mohamady31, D(R),M(R) 183 75 2(1) 184 - - - - - 88.7 1 1 6.61 11 Anwar El Ghazi24, AM(LR),FW 188 90 2(1) 178 1 - - - 2.3 74.4 2 - 6.58 12 Douglas Luiz21, M(C) 175 66 2(1) 188 1 - - - 0.7 85.7 0.7 - 6.55 13 Neil Taylor30, D(L),M(L) 176 64 3 270 - - - - 0.7 77.9 0.3 - 6.54 14 Tom Heaton33, GK 188 85 3 270 - - - - - 54.2 0.3 - 6.19 15 Keinan Davis21, FW 191 68 0(1) 3 - - - - - 33.3 2 - 6.05 16 Jonathan Kodjia29, AM(LR),FW 191 77 0(1) 16 - - - - - 75 - - 5.75 Mins: Minutes played Goals: Total goals Assists: Total assists Yel: Yellow card Red: Red card SpG: Shots per game PS%: Pass success percentage AerialsWon: Aerial duels won per game MotM: Man of the match CM: Height (in cm) KG: Weight (in kg) * Players shaded are players who are not currently active in team (Loaned, sold, etc.).
  19. Your ratings and reactions please. Keep it respectful even if you know everyone else is wrong. The players' names will be added to the poll when a mod gets chance.
  20. Crewe v Villa Please do not mention streams or streaming in this thread. Please note that there is no distinction between legal or illegal, video or audio. If you aren't sure, it doesn't go in this thread. You will receive warning points if you ignore this.
  21. Your ratings and reactions please. Keep it respectful even if you know everyone else is wrong. The players' names will be added to the poll when a mod gets chance.
  22. The Toffeemen arrived at Villa Park expecting to go top of the league for 24 hours yesterday. They may have assumed they would win, but they were licked by the hungry Villa lion. We found over the previous three seasons, that you should never take a win for granted against any football club. Some Everton fans and perhaps some members of their team, made that mistake before last night’s game. A resilient performance from the boys in claret and blue, had them eating their words at the end of the game. Marco Silva and Tony Bellew clearly found defeat as hard to swallow as it was to accept last night. There is now just a point between the two clubs. Villa Park was a wall of sound and of celebration as we recorded our first win of this new season following our promotion. It has been three and a half long years since we last won a Premier League game. We have got the taste of victory back, it’s sweet, we like it and we want more! Everton started the game strongly as a previously unbeaten side would have been expected to, but they were unable to convert their possession into goals. We cut out the errors, that had cost us points in our previous two games and we battled hard for this morale boosting win. We also played some sweet football between scoring and the end of the first half. A clean sheet and two goals scored, gave us just what we needed from this game. What a difference that first goal made. It boosted our confidence and gave us belief. It also gave us something to hold onto and all credit to our players, who were very determined to cling onto this victory. Is anyone else suffering from the same permanent grin that they last had on their face after the playoff final? It’s so very good to be back and winning again. My player ratings from a game that produced post game rejoicing and noise, that was reminiscent of Wembley a couple of months ago are: Tom Heaton – 6 – Well protected by those in front of him. Frederic Guilbert – 7 – Was found by Jack on 32 minutes and ran from just inside his own half, to the edge of their area before hitting a shot over the bar. Defended well and clearly likes to get forward. Another debut that was full of promise. His value must be near £20m now! Bjorn Engels - 8 – Did well to block a 32nd minute shot from Calvert-Lewin that was hit from just past the penalty spot, after Coleman had found the striker with a nice ball. He also got a partial block on Iwobi’s 71st minute shot, which made it a comfortable catch for Heaton. He looks so assured alongside Tyrone. Tyrone Mings – 8 – He wasn’t going to let a pre-match groin strain keep him out of this game, was he? Reacted well to block a Keane shot from six yards out, that was later ruled offside by VAR, after a 12th minute corner had fallen to him. Tyrone was first to react when Kean’s 83rd minute shot hit the right-hand post to avert the danger. Tyrone is the rock upon which our sound defence has been built upon. Neil Taylor – 6 – Solid enough at the back and was determined not to lose concentration due to the barracking he received from Everton fans. He remains somewhat less effective when he moves into the other half. Trezeguet – 6 – Unlucky to be booked on 84 minutes when Coleman took a frustrated and petulant swing at the ball and him after being awarded a free-kick. Worked hard and does a lot of it when the opposition have the ball. Douglas Luiz – 7 – Closed opponents down well and looked solid. John McGinn – 7 – He was here, there and, everywhere wasn’t he? John was found by another nice ball from Jota before hitting a low 25th minute cross from inside the left-hand side of the box for the waiting Wesley, that Pickford held onto at his near post. Jack Grealish – 7 – Was brought down inside his own half and his quickly taken free-kick began the move that led to the opening goal. Trezeguet played the ball back to him on the left-hand edge of the box, from where he looked to curl in a 45th minute shot that went a couple of yards past the far post. Gave a determined performance, chased and challenged for the ball when it was not at his feet. Jota - 8 – Guilbert played the ball to him in the 21st minute, but instead of playing the anticipated one-two he played a superb ball into the box, between two defenders for Wesley to claim a big assist for his goal. Substituted on 77 minutes having fully justified his selection and having hit some clever passes. Wesley – 8 – MOTM – Answered those (including myself) who had entertained some early doubts about him, with this tremendous performance. He hasn’t taken too long to settle, has he? Made a nicely timed run to meet Jota’s perfectly weighted pass into the box to him and coolly turned the ball past Pickford and into the left-hand corner of the net on 21 minutes. Raced purposefully onto another well hit ball from Jota 3 minutes later, running strongly past Mina, who recovered well to block his shot on goal. Held onto the ball well and was happy throughout to engage in battles for the ball with the uncompromising Mina and Keane. Substitutes: Anwar El Ghazi – 7 - Replaced Jota on 77 minutes and made a big impression on this game, in so little time. Wesley found him on 84 minutes, he stepped forward before hitting a shot from outside of the box, which Pickford pushed clear to his right. Jack played a clever ball to him on the right edge of the box, he then hit an 89th minute shot that deflected over the bar off Keane’s back. He went on to put the result beyond doubt on 95 minutes. Taylor cleared the ball from well inside his own half, Wesley picked the ball up before giving the ball to McGinn who in turn played the ball to Anwar inside of the box. He then ran past Andre Gomes and steered the ball past England’s number two’s dive, or should I say through it? Ahmed Elmohamady – Came on for Trezeguet on 86 minutes. Not on long enough to gather a rating. Up the Villa! John Lewis
  23. Villa v Everton Please do not mention streams or streaming in this thread. Please note that there is no distinction between legal or illegal, video or audio. If you aren't sure, it doesn't go in this thread. You will receive warning points if you ignore this.
  24. We had given Bournemouth a two-goal start after just 12 minutes of this game, due to avoidable errors. You really can’t afford to do that in the Premier League. Mistakes will be punished more regularly than they were in the Championship and goals will be harder to come by. We will therefore need to minimise our error rate quickly, if we are to start gathering some much-needed points. It’s early days and we are making chances, but I am starting to wonder where our goals are going to come from. McGinn and Jack will chip in with some, as occasionally will others, but our forward players do not initially give me the impression that they will ensure that the net bulges on the regular basis that it will need to. How we could have used another striker for cover and to provide us with another alternative. We face a steep learning curve and our new signings, as well as some of our other players will need to try to adapt like fish to water to the demands of the Premier League, if we are to take points from our next 7 games. We will be facing the top two from last season following those games, so these games which are against teams (other than Arsenal) that we should have a good chance of taking points from, will be crucial to our season. We do not want to find ourselves with an early gap to make up, as doing so by putting together a winning run will be more difficult than it was last year. The same will also be the case, as yesterday demonstrated when it comes to coming back from behind. Twelve points from these games would be my realistic target. We can take comfort for now from how we have performed during our first two games. We will shortly become less comfortable, unless we can pick up some points, sooner rather than later. There will be no easy games this season. The teams that we will face like Bournemouth will not arrive at Villa Park in trepidation. They will at least initially target a game against us as one they should be getting something from and will not, unlike some clubs last season be content to just park the bus and hope to ride out the storm that is to come. After those first 12 minutes we did get a grip on yesterday’s game, but we had left ourselves with a mountain to climb. We made chances, but they also made a couple themselves. It took a moment of Brazilian magic to bring us back into the game, but we never looked convinced that the comeback was really on and so we tasted the first of what I trust will not be too many home defeats of the season. I don’t want to see many more sets of away fans celebrating a victory on our patch, it’s something that I have always found a bitter pill to swallow. My early thoughts on VAR? It doesn’t stop a referee being abysmal, as was the case yesterday. We might have had our chances of making a comeback enhanced, had yesterday’s referee had the bottle to show a merited second yellow card to Billing in the first half following blatant fouls on Jack and then McGinn, before he was withdrawn by Howe at half time, to avoid giving him another opportunity to do so. My player ratings from a game that rather dampened our spirits on the return of Premier League football to Villa Park and that gave the visitors their second successive 2-1 win at Villa Park are: Tom Heaton – 5 – For some inexplicable reason he tripped Wilson, who had run onto a 1st minute ball played into the box by Fraser to concede the penalty that produced their opener and that put us on the back foot. Wilson who was only about a yard or so from the line, had run well wide of the left-hand post and his touch would have most likely sent the ball beyond his reach in any case. King proceeded to send Heaton the wrong way from the spot. Tom was unlucky that a deflection took Harry Wilson’s shot out of his reach for their second, but he positioned himself well to save Fraser’s 82nd minute shot with his legs. Ahmed Elmohamady – 6 – Hit some nice crosses and I would guess that his familiarity with playing with Trezeguet in front of him at international level, may have contributed to him retaining his first team place. No place for Guilbert even in the squad though? Bjorn Engels - 7 – Another encouraging performance alongside Tyrone. Tyrone Mings – 8 – MOTM - Unlucky to find himself on the losing side, against his former club following a pretty much faultless performance. Neil Taylor – 6 – Has reacted well to his first team place being under considerable threat. Had a 57th minute shot blocked by Cook when an Elmo cross fell to him and headed a ball from Jota on 80 minutes well wide. Might Targett nevertheless, come into contention for a start on Friday? Trezeguet – 6 – Showed that he doesn’t enjoy being on the losing side when he tried to rally both fans and his fellow players towards the end of the game. Tracked back well a couple of times and turned nicely on the edge of the box on 66 minutes before hitting a shot that was saved by Ramsdale at his left-hand post. Douglas Luiz – 7 – Looked increasingly promising following his decisive early error of judgement. He was not easily dispossessed, grew increasingly comfortable on the ball and hit a tremendous shot on 71 minutes from outside of the area into the top right-hand corner of the net, to set up what could have been a late comeback. He was in the middle of his own half when he chose to allow a 12th minute pass from Trezeguet to go through his legs, no doubt under the impression that the player behind him was another Villa player, rather than Harry Wilson. The losing playoff finalist gratefully accepted the gift and hit a powerful shot that took a deflection off Mings on the edge of the box, which led to the ball evading the diving Heaton’s reach and going in off the left-hand post for their second. I have a feeling that he may become an exceptional player. John McGinn – 7 – Had an 8th minute shot from outside the box tipped over the bar by Ramsdale, a 22nd minute shot from just inside the box also blocked by the keeper and hit the right-hand side netting with a shot on 42 minutes. Jack Grealish – 6 – Had a quiet first half. McGinn took a quick free kick which found Jack in space, he ran on before hitting a 53rd minute shot from the edge of the box just wide of the right-hand post. Claimed an assist when he played the ball back to Luiz from within the box to find him in space and to provide him with the opportunity to hit a goal on his debut. Got on the end of a well placed 63rd minute Elmo cross, but shouldered, rather than headed it from close range and the ball sailed well over the crossbar. Anwar El Ghazi - 5 – Failed to make any significant impression on this game. When he hit that first half free kick from the edge of the box harmlessly over, I’m sure I was not the only one thinking of how we were missing Connor’s dead ball prowess. Wesley – 5 – It’s early days, but he doesn’t look like a natural goal scorer to me. Hit a 26th minute shot from near the left-hand post that deflected off a defender and was pushed away for a corner by Ramsdale and had a shot blocked by a defender after Trezeguet had ran into the box and squared the ball for him. Substitutes: Jota – Replaced El Ghazi on 75 minutes. Didn’t make enough of an impression during the limited time that he had available to do so, to earn a rating. Keinan Davis – Came on for Trezeguet on 87 minutes. Not on long enough to gather a rating. Up the Villa! John Lewis

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