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Player Match Ratings – One costly mistake does for us!


John
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Manchester City lose games that they take the lead in as often as we win them from a goal behind so the result looked inevitable when we went a goal down in first half stoppage time and so it proved with a late first half goal rather than one at the end of the game costing us points this time.



Taking anything from this game was always going to be a bonus but it was a bonus we did not look like getting after 45 minutes of hard work was undone on the stroke of half time by one of our youngsters albeit a full international taking an unnecessary risk that led to the only goal of the game.



Manchester City were not quite at their best last night and have not been at their best often enough this season to take their defence of their title down to the wire. But this was not an even playing field. They have a side of stars that has been put together at great expense and we have a team of mostly young talent who we hope might turn into a decent team before we sell off anyone that the likes of Manchester City may want to take off our hands as they did Barry and then Milner. Our team is focused on financial fair play and balance sheets where their team is based on buying success at whatever the cost may be. That for me was exemplified by the substitutes that we were able to call upon in our hour of need where they were able to send on the likes of Dzeko, Nasri and Barry.



We worked very hard last night and for me the first half turned and they started to dominate the game after the injured Rodwell had come off and Yaya Toure began to dominate the centre of the field. They had the edge on possession and the lion’s share of the chances for the rest of the game with Zabaleta on 37 minutes and then Yaya Toure on 72 hitting a post. But whilst it stayed 1 – 0 there was always some hope that we might sneak a late goal as so often teams do against us. But it was never really going to happen was it?



So we go again after another home defeat to two games that will for me shape our destiny this season. If we play with the same spirit that we have shown of late we can get the 4 points minimum or the 6 points we really do need from the coming games at Reading and then back at Villa Park against QPR. Anything less performance or point wise may well be something we could not recover from as the games start to run out.


My player ratings from a game that has left us still lingering in the bottom three with just 10 games remaining but our fans were still able to exhibit their wit and gallows humour as when being taunted by the Manchester City fans chorus of “Going Down” they quickly responded with “What’s it like?” are:



Brad Guzan – 8 – MOTM - Kept us in with a chance of stealing a point and stopped too much more damage being done to our abysmal goal difference last night with a fine display. Touched a Rodwell shot over on 22 minutes and then got down well to collect a bouncing Milner free kick from the edge of the box 10 minutes later. Denied Tevez on 41 minutes when he turned away his nice curling shot and got his finger tips to Toure’s 72nd minute shot from the edge of the box to help it onto the post.


Matthew Lowton – 6 – Kept a goal bound Tevez shot out with his legs on 55 minutes and then hit a rasping shot just wide of the post on 66 minutes himself.


Nathan Baker – 7 – Had a very solid game and was the best of our defenders.


Ciaran Clark – 5 – His one real mistake cost us very dearly in first half stoppage time when he lost the ball to Dzeko near the half way line by turning into his man rather than playing it clear. Dzeko then ran on squared the ball for Tevez who left Bennett and Guzan floundering before hitting the ball past Clark who had got back on the line to try to make amends for his error of judgement. He will learn from that.


Joe Bennett - 6 – He is more adept when coming forward then he is when defending but he did well enough last night and seems to have recovered from that bad patch.


Fabian Delph – 8 – Another very good performance. Kept battling against a very good midfield and we will miss him following that late booking for hand ball which rules him out of our next two vital 6 pointers.


Ashley Westwood – 6 – Found it hard to make an impact at times against experienced players of real quality but he kept plugging away and will reach their level with more games and experience under his belt.


Charles N’Zogbia - 5 – Did not make the impact he had been making on our games recently last night which was very disappointing.


Andreas Weimann – 6 – Almost got a touch to Bennett’s cross on 6 minutes and then hit a fierce shot after being fed by the same player after their goal but Clichy blocked the shot. Hit a good cross in for Gabby on 61 minutes that Kolo Toure put out for a corner. He was replaced on 86 minutes.


Gabriel Agbonlahor – 6 – Did his best to try to make something happen and put in a big shift for the shirt but he was unable to produce an end product against defenders of this calibre with pace alone.


Christian Benteke – 7 – Got little to no protection from the referee from some rough house defending. Unlucky when Tevez cleared his header off the line on 21 minutes and he also had a shout for a late penalty. Lacked service but he was up for the battle and gave as good as he got.


Substitutes:


Brett Holman – 6 – Came on for N’Zogbia on 65 minutes and started brightly but his impact and plus points lessened as the game moved on towards its conclusion.


Simon Dawkins – Replaced Weimann on 86 minutes thus reducing what goal threat we offered at a stroke. He again showed little to suggest he has it in him to turn a game when coming off the bench in what was a brief run out and was not on long enough to earn a rating.



Karim El Ahmadi - Replaced Westwood on 88 minutes. Another who was not on long enough to get any rating.



Stay up the Villa and Stay Strong Captain!
John Lewis

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Manchester City lose games that they take the lead in as often as we win them from a goal behind so the result looked inevitable when we went a goal down in first half stoppage time and so it proved with a late first half goal rather than one at the end of the game costing us points this time.

Taking anything from this game was always going to be a bonus but it was a bonus we did not look like getting after 45 minutes of hard work was undone on the stroke of half time by one of our youngsters albeit a full international taking an unnecessary risk that led to the only goal of the game.

Manchester City were not quite at their best last night and have not been at their best often enough this season to take their defence of their title down to the wire. But this was not an even playing field. They have a side of stars that has been put together at great expense and we have a team of mostly young talent who we hope might turn into a decent team before we sell off anyone that the likes of Manchester City may want to take off our hands as they did Barry and then Milner. Our team is focused on financial fair play and balance sheets where their team is based on buying success at whatever the cost may be. That for me was exemplified by the substitutes that we were able to call upon in our hour of need where they were able to send on the likes of Dzeko, Nasri and Barry.

We worked very hard last night and for me the first half turned and they started to dominate the game after the injured Rodwell had come off and Yaya Toure began to dominate the centre of the field. They had the edge on possession and the lion’s share of the chances for the rest of the game with Zabaleta on 37 minutes and then Yaya Toure on 72 hitting a post. But whilst it stayed 1 – 0 there was always some hope that we might sneak a late goal as so often teams do against us. But it was never really going to happen was it?

So we go again after another home defeat to two games that will for me shape our destiny this season. If we play with the same spirit that we have shown of late we can get the 4 points minimum or the 6 points we really do need from the coming games at Reading and then back at Villa Park against QPR. Anything less performance or point wise may well be something we could not recover from as the games start to run out.

My player ratings from a game that has left us still lingering in the bottom three with just 10 games remaining but our fans were still able to exhibit their wit and gallows humour as when being taunted by the Manchester City fans chorus of “Going Down” they quickly responded with “What’s it like?” are:

Brad Guzan – 8 – MOTM - Kept us in with a chance of stealing a point and stopped too much more damage being done to our abysmal goal difference last night with a fine display. Touched a Rodwell shot over on 22 minutes and then got down well to collect a bouncing Milner free kick from the edge of the box 10 minutes later. Denied Tevez on 41 minutes when he turned away his nice curling shot and got his finger tips to Toure’s 72nd minute shot from the edge of the box to help it onto the post.

Matthew Lowton – 6 – Kept a goal bound Tevez shot out with his legs on 55 minutes and then hit a rasping shot just wide of the post on 66 minutes himself.

Nathan Baker – 7 – Had a very solid game and was the best of our defenders.

Ciaran Clark – 5 – His one real mistake cost us very dearly in first half stoppage time when he lost the ball to Dzeko near the half way line by turning into his man rather than playing it clear. Dzeko then ran on squared the ball for Tevez who left Bennett and Guzan floundering before hitting the ball past Clark who had got back on the line to try to make amends for his error of judgement. He will learn from that.

Joe Bennett - 6 – He is more adept when coming forward then he is when defending but he did well enough last night and seems to have recovered from that bad patch.

Fabian Delph – 8 – Another very good performance. Kept battling against a very good midfield and we will miss him following that late booking for hand ball which rules him out of our next two vital 6 pointers.

Ashley Westwood – 6 – Found it hard to make an impact at times against experienced players of real quality but he kept plugging away and will reach their level with more games and experience under his belt.

Charles N’Zogbia - 5 – Did not make the impact he had been making on our games recently last night which was very disappointing.

Andreas Weimann – 6 – Almost got a touch to Bennett’s cross on 6 minutes and then hit a fierce shot after being fed by the same player after their goal but Clichy blocked the shot. Hit a good cross in for Gabby on 61 minutes that Kolo Toure put out for a corner. He was replaced on 86 minutes.

Gabriel Agbonlahor – 6 – Did his best to try to make something happen and put in a big shift for the shirt but he was unable to produce an end product against defenders of this calibre with pace alone.

Christian Benteke – 7 – Got little to no protection from the referee from some rough house defending. Unlucky when Tevez cleared his header off the line on 21 minutes and he also had a shout for a late penalty. Lacked service but he was up for the battle and gave as good as he got.

Substitutes:

Brett Holman – 6 – Came on for N’Zogbia on 65 minutes and started brightly but his impact and plus points lessened as the game moved on towards its conclusion.

Simon Dawkins – Replaced Weimann on 86 minutes thus reducing what goal threat we offered at a stroke. He again showed little to suggest he has it in him to turn a game when coming off the bench in what was a brief run out and was not on long enough to earn a rating.

Karim El Ahmadi - Replaced Westwood on 88 minutes. Another who was not on long enough to get any rating.

Stay up the Villa and Stay Strong Captain!

John Lewis

 

with reference to you 3rd paragraph.

 

Liverpool but suarez we buy Bent, Almost the same fee i think.

 

either we buy wrong or can't develop the at BMH, either way we don't get value for money in the main.

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"Liverpool but suarez we buy Bent, Almost the same fee i think. either we buy wrong or can't develop the at BMH, either way we don't get value for money in the main".

I think Bent was the last time we went big and it worked that season TRO as it kept us up. We have chosen not to do the same this time or to do anything near it and it is a very high risk decision. We have not got value for money in the past with some signings we have made but the likes of Downing, Milner and Young all represented profitable player trading as a former chairman once referred to as will Benteke so I think it is all about signing the right player at the right price. Bent scores goals if a team plays to his strengths and feeds him as did Young and Downing. They left were not replaced and so Bent looks less of a player and does not get games as we do not play a system that suits his game and his value therefore falls. Whether we can develop the young players we have recently signed given the pressure they are now under is open to question but I think Weimann has shown that given time to develop we can produce the players but my concern is that we may now doing so to make money rather than to build a team.

Edited by John
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