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Pre-match discussion?


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Well well. Cat/pigeon interface scenario initiated! :)

We'll win. Teams usually do when the manager goes and the caretaker steps in. They're either "doing it for the boss" or just plain relieved he's gone. Reality kicks back in after a few games and the caretaker has to step aside.

Only difference is, this all normally happens near the end of the season, not the beginning.

Anyway, 3-0 Villa. Albrighton, Carew, Collins.

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Whatever the team is on Saturday as fans we have all got to be right behind the players 100% for 90 minutes. When there are mistakes no jeers, the caretaker manager and all the first 11 and subs need us right now. A win against West Ham is crucial to keep the spirits up and not start the season any worse.

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Assuming Collins, Cuellar and Davies are still injured I hope it will be like this.






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L.Young   Clark   Dunne   Warnock 

       Petrov     Reo-Coker 

Albrighton    A.Young     Downing 


L.Young   Clark   Dunne   Warnock 

Albrighton  Petrov  Reo-Coker A. Young

       Delfouneso    Agbonlahor

If we don't sign Ireland by Saturday what do people think of these teams?

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Read the Hammer got injured playing for Germany tonight. He captained, set-up first goal then scored second in 2-2 with Denmark. He then took a knock and went off. Hopefully he won't come back and bite us Saturday as players have done in the past.

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-------------------- Gabby --------------------

Downing ----------- Ash ---------- Albrighton

------------- NRC -------- Petrov -------------

Warnock --- Dunne ----- Clark ----- L Young

-------------------- Friedel ---------------------

I'd like to see that ^ But I have a feeling that Kev Mac might play 4-4-2 with Carew and Gabby

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Milner seems to be included in Kev Macs squad for tomorrow. What do people think about this? I for one hope that he starts. I sort of still want to believe we have a chance of keeping him and I also think if called upon he'll play his guts out like he always has.

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Big Mac on the game, Get behind the boys, boys!!!

Kevin MacDonald insists the claret and blue army will need to play their part this weekend - as he urged them to inspire his players to victory.

MacDonald says a vocal and positive crowd will work wonders as Villa chase an opening day victory over West Ham.

He wants supporters to cheer the players loudly at the start - and even louder if things don't go entirely to plan during the game.

He said: "The supporters can play their part definitely. We will need them to.

"West Ham are no easy team to play against. They might think they are coming to play Aston Villa, they haven't got a full-time manager just a caretaker, we might catch them cold, there might be a bit of unrest - all these little things. So the crowd from an early stage have to get behind the team.

"People make mistakes - it's the first game of the season. People always make mistakes in any game.

"But they have to get behind them - and keep behind them.

"If, by chance, we happen to go a goal behind, just get even louder. Help and inspire those players to get back into the game.

"Inspire them to show even more commitment. I am sure they will show loads and loads of commitment though.

"But, as I said, everyone makes mistakes - I might make mistakes by picking the wrong team.

"Those are things we are paid to do. The players are paid to make decisions on the football field. They can't make all the right decisions. If they did, they'd be champions of the league."

MacDonald expects a tough encounter against the Hammers, managed for the first time by new boss Avram Grant.

He sees a lot of quality in their ranks, including Mark Noble, Scott Parker - as well as former claret and blue hero Thomas Hitzlsperger, who will be hoping to shake off a thigh injury picked up on international duty this week with Germany.

He added: "The big thing for us of course is the return of Thomas.

"He graced Villa Park on many an occasion. He was tremendous for us and then obviously went on to Stuttgart, Lazio and played for his country in a World Cup final, which was tremendous.

"It'll be good to see him. But equally, we want to send him away with a defeat behind him.

"Thomas was great. He came through our system. We got him from Bayern Munich on a free transfer early on and he developed through our ranks.

"He has gone on to make an outstanding career for himself. I am pleased for him and proud he has gone on to do that. But I don't want to be too happy with him after the game.

"I want to be pleased we have done the right thing against him.

"Obviously they have Avram Grant in charge and he has been an outstanding manager over the past few years.

"He was a mere slip away from the Champions League victory against Manchester United when he was at Chelsea.

"He was obviously put in a difficult position last season with Portsmouth. But he is now at a club which is hoping to go on the up and up with David Sullivan and David Gold in charge.

"They have some very, very good players, notably Scott Parker, Mark Noble, who are England internationals or ex-internationals who are knocking on the door.

"They are a team full of internationals and let's make no mistake - it's going to be a difficult game - but there are no easy games in the Premier League. There are no easy games in football anymore.

"It's a difficult thing to win any football game. The Premier League is the most difficult, never mind if it's the best."

Tickets are still available for this weekend's clash with the Hammers - click here to snap up some seats.

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