Date: 9th February 2009 at 3:16pm
Written by:

Confidence is the key

Not only did we win at Blackburn, not only did we reach a new record of away victories, not only did we move ahead of Chelsea, we did it with some style.

Far from being a totally supreme performance it remains one of the most dominant ones the team have put out, and one where ‘luck’, good or bad, didn’t play that much of a part, even the ref only made one mistake, not to allow the goal from Emile Heskey’s head.

No the dream is alive, and it was achieved by a not too impressive performance from Villa’s wonder boy, Ashley Young, who looked off the pace for most of the game, but still managed as is his want to skin several Blackburn defenders, and make some decent crosses.

James Milner seems to have taken the headlines, especially amongst most Villa fans, probably the need to justify O’Neill’s price paid partly to blame. That said he at least showed that he can play like we know he can, and a well taken goal, left footed too, shows as on his birthday he can do it. All he needs now is to continue to do it.

Talking of continuing to do it, that bald headed giant of a defender Zat knight, continues to surprise with a near faultless display against some of the best strikers in the division, am I surprised, is he you reckon, or is it the confidence that now abounds making a full impact on him too. Petrov, again to my pleasure but continued amazement, went through the game in second gear, and was inspirational at times. His performance allowed Barry to make some of the most ridiculous moves and passes I’ve ever seen from him and he’s usually surpasses most Villa players out on the pitch anyway, but Saturday he excelled again.

Football is about confidence they always say, who are ‘they’ by the way ? Saturdays performance oozed confidence all over our game, and inevitably against a team who had gone 9 games without defeat a victory was assured, thanks to a decent shot from the bloke who rarely shoots and the now obligatory near last minute strike. Oh did anyone notice in the wonder performances of Milner and Petrov and others that little cameo from Gabby?

I say Little because at times, he reminded me of a player we once had who used to do things like run from the half way line past several defenders into the box to score. Gabby didn’t of course, he got close, but Emile got the ball between his legs rather than on the end of one and Blackburn survived. What a run though. He did several others too, eventually finding
himself on his right peg and goal number 2 resulted. To think he’d gone all those games without a goal and suddenly he’s done it again. Some of his movement was of the best quality, creating space for all around him, Blackburn’s defenders were nearly at panic levels at times and its no wonder, put two men on Ashley you have to worry about Milner, do the same there and you have Gabby, and he scores goals, even disallowed ones and that frightens teams.

Improvement all around in a match many in the pre-match forecast had us down for a fall and for me confidence was the key. That and a superb Gabby Agbonlahor.



31 Replies to “Confidence Is The Key For Villa”

  • And that confidence puts pressure on other teams…. Chelsea down to 4th and now Scolari gets the sack! Panic stations!! Now is the time to push on. UTV!

  • Well said 48, Gabby even looks like up when he runs now and the close control has improved 10 fold. Same improvement can be seen in Zat and think your’e onto something about this confidence, it seems contagious. UTV

  • “James Milner seems to have taken the headlines, especially amongst most Villa fans, probably the need to justify O’Neill’s price paid partly to blame.” To blame for what? I’ve just re-read and re-read that and I’m still not sure what it actually means. Are you seriously suggesting that Milner’s performance was only thought good amongst Villa fans because MON paid too high a price? I seriously think you need to get some help for your obvious personal issue with MON. It ain’t healthy – you’ll be stalking him next!

  • I agree Bob, i didn’t know which way to take this article it seem like praise but having a slight pop at the same time. I love Milner he’s great and at his age he is well worth the money, just think we could have had bently at what 15 mil.

  • If we get into the champions league no one will give a hoot about how much money we have paid for any player which , by the way, is a fraction of what Spurs have outlayed on players to be where?

  • What annoys me most about these posts is the complete lack of balance. When things have not gone our way for a game or two, one name comes up for blame: Martin O’Neill. No problem – he’s the manager. But it is surely no accident that his name is not even mentioned above when avfc is handing out (faint?) praise? You really are as transparent as a wet tee-shirt, avfc, and it’s not even amusing any more.

  • our attacking is scary at times. and yea, i do agree that if you double up on any 1 of our players, u will have to take the risk of our other players schredding the crap out of the defence. cant waid for carew to be back to full fitness. heskey is good no doubt, but i miss the way carew ran at defenders. opposition do not doubleup on Carew, they sent the whole team to do that!

  • Gentlemen – calm down (oh crap, I’ve turned into a Scouser … help!). 48 has his own agenda, we all know that. Just don’t give him the Oxygen he needs to fuel his strange crusade – attention. If we all just agree with everything he says for a few months I guarantee he’ll go away. We played well. Milner was always worth £12m. MON obviously knows more about football than all of us put together. That’s the truth and nothing 48 says can change it.

  • No you weren’t, avfc, you were having yet another backhanded dig at the team in the only way you can while we are doing this well. Is your name really Wormtongue?

  • David O’Leary isnt good enough for plymouth let alone portsmouth. Ill be very amused if it happens, but gutted for pompey fans

  • As ever I read a ’48 post and come out of it thinking, is he being positive or negative? Did he just slag monny off? or did he praise him? he doesnt agree with 12 million fee for Milner, but he has done well….i’m confused, HELP!!??

  • Am i the only one who thought 48 was actually trying to be positive…i’ve read a lot worse from him. Perhaps we should cut the guy some slack, i thought it was a good read and said much the same things that i think. Of course MON is god in my eyes, and therefore we have a disagreement, but other than that, it was positive.

  • kris its called edging your bets… team fall at the final hurdle he can stand on the mountain and say “I told you so” team are successful he can continue supporting them, but not too much anyway..

  • Bit harsh fellas – good article I thought. A lot of people thought 12m was too much for Jimmy – myself included at the time. Similar to when we forked out 9m for Webcam – i’m sure not many of us back then would have thought that a particularly shrewd buy for a largely unproven player. Yet again, in hindsight though it’s proving to be an absolute bargain….the boss seems to know what he’s doing doesn’t he lads?

  • I thought it was as pretty positive article as well, really nice. Too much hype around you 48, your name goes before you.

  • Thanks to those who read the article and not the poster, much appreciated.
    What i can never understand is that by suggesting say Milner cost too much and that he’s not a player who makes things happen, like Bentley, SWP or our own Young, some immediately pigeon hole my views as a Milner hater, even though time and again, I have said like Sidwell, he has shown how good and effective he can be, but how often he isn’t.
    As someone, maybe even the first who said we were on target for 3rd or higher while some, Col, were still expecting us to lose to Everton and so on, I find it even more amazing that I am edging my bets. If we don’t qualify for Europe it will be down to one thing, the lack of squad players, all season long I have suggested the first 13 are good enough
    Still, exciting times, and only one man deserves the credit, the man who replaced Doug Ellis and manages O’Neill so well.

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