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Ratings and reactions: Newcastle 1-1 Villa


Who was your man of the match?  

145 members have voted

  1. 1. Who was your man of the match?

    • Guzan
    • Vlaar
    • Clark
    • Lichaj
    • Lowton
    • Ireland
    • El Ahmadi
    • Bannan
    • Bent
    • Holman
    • Weimann
    • Agbonlahor (for Weimann 63)
    • N'Zogbia (for El Ahmadi 72)

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Passing stats for Villa today: (link)


Interesting to see so many people highlight Bannan. He made 35 passes today and found a Villa shirt 27 times. Most of the time (4 of 8) times when he conceded possession was when he crossed the ball, and the majority of his crosses were accurate, including the assist. If you click through you can also see that he was only tackled once. Stephen Ireland was tackled four times. He won possession for us 7 times, the same as Lowton and Holman, joint best for us today.

The stats suggest he had a very good game. I wonder what causes the perception that he hasnt in so many people?

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Guzan - 8 Did everything right, distribution was pretty good other than one straight out to touch from a pressured back pass. Couple of vital saves.

Lichaj - 5 Not very involved that I can recall. Nice throw-ins though.

Clark - 8 (MOTM)Well done on the goal and remaining in position after the initial clearance. Also seemed to do a better job in the back than in recent games, with no rash fouls and at least a couple clearances.

Vlaar - 7 Also defended well, good on the ball.

Lowton - 6 Solid performance and looks to be getting more comfortable. Odd moment toward the end when Holman had to push him out wide with both marking the ball (at least I think that's what happened, a bit hard to pin down watching on PC).

El Ahmadi - 7 Good performance. I thought the yellow was a bit harsh. Hopefully the injury is minor.

Bannan - 6 Had some nice crosses including the assist, pretty good with the corners as well. Not good enough in possession, even though the clear example of getting caught from behind wasn't entirely his fault since no one alerted him to the trailing defender, he still took a bit too long. Having him in to defend for the point was regrettable, but necessary due to the unusual bench circumstances.

Holman - 6 More accurately 3 for attacking and 8 for energy/tracking back. Would seem more useful as a second half sub to help hang on to leads unless he can tidy up the passing. Crucial mistake in forcing Ben Arfa inside and not following up with any pressure at all on the tying goal (though I think the goal was taken with Ben Arfa's weaker foot - mistake was more the lack of follow-up).

Ireland - 7 Need this level from Ireland every time out. Created some nice chances, shame he wasted the one set up from Gabby's left wing cross.

Weimann - 6 His best chance came from a brilliant turn in the box, just not quite enough room near post to beat Krul. Otherwise, he showed pretty good energy and some decent attacking play.

Bent - 6 Debated a 5. Seemed to be a bit more involved and linked OK at times. In general a one-trick pony and the trick today was somewhat pedestrian. Didn't do enough with his chances. Strikers should be selfish... inside the box. I thought there were a couple times went Bent took no-hope chances or failed to play in others, wasting possession and/or better opportunities.

Gabby - (7) Impressed by the brief appearance. Great cross to the back of the box to set up Ireland's chance. Think we've missed him in the first two games.

N'Zogbia - (6) One of his better Villa performances, which doesn't say much. Probably a fool's errand to ask, but we don't really need him to be a matchwinner (although it would be nice). If he could just get down the wing and play a decent ball in, it would fill a void. Not holding my breath.

Lambert - 8 Vastly improved performance from largely the same available players as the first two games, in what was on paper the toughest matchup of the season (in its infancy).

Communication - 4 Bannan getting dispossessed from behind, Guzan and Lichaj colliding, Holman and Lowton both ending up on the same player and releasing an overlapping run (which Newcastle failed to notice as well). None of it hurt this time, but needs to improve. Some is down to a new GK and inexperience, though.

Probert - 4 Gave numerous 50/50 calls to Newcastle and roughly zero to Villa. At least he didn't give any penalties. Couldn't have done much more for Newcastle otherwise.

Fans - Not sure what ratio of fouls they would have found equitable. Don't think you'll do much better than 6-to-1 in a game in which neither side was dominant overall.

Also, welcome back jangling nerves. Missed you.

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What those stats don't tell you is that he was also our most creative! So funny the stick Bannan gets when he's so blatantly one of our best players. His set-pieces are fantastic and always find one of our players. Obviously people watching a different game especially if they think Ireland is "great" :|

Our intensity levels were the most impressive thing today. 13 shots on goal and 9 on target away from home !! That is very good indeed, probably broken quite a long-standing record for us too.

Sadly I don't think it's possible to play with that level of intensity every match.

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I thought we would lose heavily but i have to say that was probably the best football we have played in nearly two years...

i cannot remember the last time we looked so comfortable on the ball, making triangles and creating space, fantastic to see.....

Guzan - Given who? This guy commands his box and oozes enthusiasm, some great saves, well in Brad

Lowton - Who says you cant make the step up from League 1? Solid defensively and excellent on the ball. Would like

him to venture forward more.

Vlaar - He's gonna be the bargain of the season. An absolute beast, won every header and so so classy on the ball

Clark - I'm still unsure about his abilty to be a CB for us but he played very well today. He likes a goal doesn't he?

Lichaj - He did ok. He isn't a LB and will be replaced by Bennett. Few too many aimless hoofs from him but worked his

arse off

KEA - Another absolute bargain. Keeps things ticking over and very composed. Hope his injury isnt too bad

Bannan - I've never rated him but he was great today. Linked up well with KEA and lovely cross for the goal. Maybe,

just maybe he has a role in a PL side.

Holman - I love this guys energy and work rate.Never stops. Lacking quality on the ball a bit though. I see like a Ji

Sung Park player. Use him for the big matches to press the opposition and give them no time on the ball

Ireland - Im his biggest critic but he was better today. Got into the box a lot more and played closer to Bent. You can

see that he hasn't shot in a while coz that left footer sailed wide!

Weimann - Great work ethic.Found himself in good positions but didnt have his shooting boots on

Bent - He annoyed me a bit today. On 2 or 3 occasions he should have shot first time but wanted far too much time

on the ball. He looked slow. Hopefully its just match sharpness early doors. But you could see how much more

he enjoyed having someone alongside him.

Zogs - Hard to say.Looked sharp

Gabby - Looked very good and a great forward burst that Bent should have finished off.2 weeks to get him fit now.

Lambert - The players seemed motivated, forward thinking and organised. He changed the team again and got his

tactics spot on.Cisse and Ba didnt get a look in and his philosophy of possession football is so nice to see.

Well done Paul.

Overall a great performance only undone by a screamer. 2 weeks now to bed in our new signings and get ready for Swansea.Renewed optimism from this Villa Fan


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very happy with the aggression and hard work of the players from the first minute today. they want to play for villa,and lambert. very happy. we should have beaten a good team on their own patch. Lambo is startin to make his mark, hopefully all the doubters are eatin their words now.


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All I want is us not to get beat today, and have a right good go. Living in the North East, the shit I'm hearing at the moment out of the gobshite 'Geordie Nation', is nauseating! I wanna be able to ram it down their throats on Monday morning. Can't see anything that them being proven right though, unfortunately.

Well they did exactly what I asked. Glad my worst fears were not realised. Can go to work with my head held high in the morning. :D

The only they could get past us today, was with a 'worldy'. Was a tad disappointed Holman didn't close him down, and invited him to hit it though. I think we would have picked up all 3 points, if not for that mistake.

4 stand outs for me were KEA, Lowton, Guzan, and my MOTM Vlarr.

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Hands down to Holman for his effort, every time i saw him when N'Castle had the ball he was rushing in, closing down their players. would have liked to see a stat of distance covered.

Overall a big improvement on the last two games and last season as a whole, everyone put in an effort, and we played good football at times, creating chances, probably should have netted some of them aswell.

Best players for me was Clark, Guzan, Lowton and Ireland. Gabby and KEA was decent too when they was on.

Bring on Swansea!! UTV.

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Sounded a cracking game on the radio, end to end stuff at times. Nice that we created chances and brilliant we didnt fold after they equalised.

Really happy now we are up and running. Let's follow this up with another solid display vs Swansea.

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For me, most of Bannan's successful passes were sideways or backwards, not the penetrating passing we need. At least Holman is always looking to make that slotted pass or to make that forward run off the ball...Bannan still seems bench material for me.

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Felt so proud of the improvement shown today, if we can play that way most weeks then we will be absolutely fine.

So pleased with the new signings, and pleased that PL had the balls to put Guzan into the side - I get the impression that we've got a manager now who won't play 'favourites', if you're out of form then you'll be out of the team.

MOTM for me was KEA, everything good went through him.

I'm very optimistic for this season now, UTV

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This game will probably be a real confidence booster on our players, sure there will be some bumps along the way and we'll lose some but at least work has been properly started and we actually have something to look forward. Like I said in the other topic, either Lambert or someone in his organization has real keen eye on potential players.

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