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Villa Draw Again


JohnCresswell
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Sheffield Utd 2 Aston Villa 2

FA Barclays Premiership

Monday 11th December 2006.

Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, Jingle all the way. Oh what fun it is to see Villa nearly win away…

Villa failed to convert chances in the first half, in what became an almost familiar story when Sheffield United took control of the second. Some good goals and dodgy defending meant that Villa come back to Villa Park with a draw from Brammel Lane.

Before the game I’d have taken a draw. At the end, I’m slightly disappointed with just the one point, but it’ll do for now and it’s picking up points which lets face it, we wouldn’t have got last season. Villa knew they would have to fight hard tonight, and were lucky to have Chris Sutton back up front to help towards the cause. Sutton once again played very well, a constant pain for defenders, and is doing well in that role of ‘somebody who is a constant pain in the arse to the opposition’ that we have missed for so long.

Villa’s first half began fantastically and it carried on in a similar way. Stilian Petrov scored his first Villa goal after only 90 seconds – a 20 yard volley after the ball had rebounded back to him from a Sheffield Utd defender. A decent finish. Villa controlled the first half, and should have added to their tally. Chris Sutton hit the underside of the crossbar with a fantastic header, and Gary Cahill came close to netting a second.

Lets face it, we knew not taking our chances would come back and hit us in the face, and within 15 minutes of the second half we were losing. Some very poor defending, let again meant that Villa were left with an uphill struggle.

Both goals really should have been cut out. The first was down to an awful header out by Ridgewell and the second a very poor effort by Cahill, which saw the ball deflect off him after he turned his back to the ball. It really was one of those days, defensively. Taylor in goal is always a worry to me – I feel that starting with him means that we have to be extra vigilant in defence, but he can’t really be blamed too much for the goals. His performance tonight was good – not quite as good as some may say – he made some good saves, but I’d have been disappointed if any of them had gone in. What was impressive was his domination in the air. Unfortunately for Taylor, he picked up an injury towards the end of the game, which could mean we will get to see third choice goalkeeper, Robert Olenik, make his debut against Bolton on Saturday. If this is the case, I hope Olof Mellberg returns to the center as he is no right back and the center of defence does miss him.

Still a mere 60 seconds later we were back on level terms. A clever ball into the box by Davis, great header by Sutton and Baros took the ball down superbly before firing it past Kenny. That’s more like it.

A few goal mouth scrambles, but that was it. A very entertaining match, but you have the feeling that neither team will come out of the game happy with only a point.

A hard fought, determined but honest fight between the two teams was almost ruined at the end when substitute Juan Pablo Angel elbowed someone who wasn’t the small ginger child playing for Sheffield Utd. Angel would have been lucky to get away with a yellow, but surprisingly, but not out of character, referee Mark Halsey didn’t know what to do and only gave a free kick.

Next up, Bolton Wanderers.

John Cresswell,

editor@villatalk.com

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Taylor can't be blamed for the goals as such - but he doesn't inspire confidence in the defence because he's scared to come off his line, so even a simple cross causes trouble.

When Arsenal sold him Wenger said he was a good shot-stopper but would never command his area, and I think we've seen that in the last few games.

He's a liability, I'm afraid to say.

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Taylor can't be blamed for the goals as such - but he doesn't inspire confidence in the defence because he's scared to come off his line, so even a simple cross causes trouble.

When Arsenal sold him Wenger said he was a good shot-stopper but would never command his area, and I think we've seen that in the last few games.

He's a liability, I'm afraid to say.

spot on analysis IMO. That's certainly the impression i got from being at the game too.

"Does not command his area" is the phrase that springs to mind

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