Oh for the love of God, pack it in MON, we’ll all have heart attacks. They should give us all beta blockers with our cup tickets don’t you think?!
Well football really is a funny old game!
We were 2-0 down against Blackburn in the Carling Cup and came back to win.
Today we were 2-0 down to a very bright Reading team and again, we looked lost, lacking in spirit, tired and to be frank at times, clueless.
Final score. 4-2.
Half time consensus was pretty much that we’d been ‘pathetic’ and then the questions start – as they do with fans of all teams – about the manager, tactics etc. I pointed out that MON wasn’t on the pitch, it was the players who had performed (not performed) so badly, not the manager. The retort was Petrov looked shattered, that Heskey and Carew up front doesn’t work, that Luke Young is a right-back not Carlos Cuellar (who was not good at Wembley it has to be said). It is difficult to argue with those points, I’m sure many of us make the same arguments with mates etc.
And yet… final score. 4-2 to the Villa boys!
I don’t know. I can’t explain. I just am clueless as to what is going on! The only thing you can say with some certainty is if we’d been 2-0 down 5 years back, we’d have lost the game, now we can come back and often do.
Only thing I can put it down to.
There is a desire, it was hard to see in the first half but it was in abundance in the second half.
Baffling, exciting, heart attacking inducing. Just a few of the emotions!
Credit in a totally non condescending way to Reading, they made that a REALLY good cup tie and will think they threw it away. I’d disagree, with a half time rollicking still ringing in the players ears, Villa did exactly what they had been told to do, got an early goal. Ashley Young converted a nice pass from John Carew which was dummied by Carlos Cuellar. Ok, ok, Cuellar either missed it or miss hit it, moving on. 2-1 and game on.
Then up stepped John Carew.
Ah, John Carew. The biggest enigma we’ve had since Stan Collymore. At least Stan could put his enigmatic status down to a mental disorder (which is what depression is, no matter how much people make light of it in total ignorance) but JC?
He has everything. He showed that today. If he showed that 90% of the time he’d be up there with the Drogba’s and Rooney’s of the world. I have no doubt of that at all.
His first attempt not long after Young’s goal was a tame attempt at a flick on. HIT THE BLOODY THING I moaned in the forum. Not long after he connected beautifully after actually running in the box and getting in the right position to head in from close range. Fantastic. 2-2. Then he got another chance and flicked it, showing why he is up front for Villa and not me! Same sort of attempt as the first, only this time he connected and in it went.
3-2 and game over?
Well no, we had a few more chances, Emile Heskey most notably who was one on one with their keeper and mucked it up. Surely the plane to South Africa is getting further and further away from Emile if he can’t convert those? 5 goals in 32 games I believe the commentator said today. Hmmm? Then Reading came back at us, Ashley Young cleared one attempt off the line and there was much in the way of scrambled defending but we held strong. Then finally the game was put beyond doubt with a penalty. John Carew was brought down and the pen was the right decision. He converted and collected the match ball with a very nice hattrick.
John Carew…. on form like this …. IS bigger than me and you, WOULD be being offered a new contract and WOULD deserve hero status. Come on JC, you have the world at your feet, do that in every game to the end of the season (come on MON, start the guy to do it, Emile is not going to score!) and we could not only lift the FA Cup but we could also finish fourth.
Now that would make his name worth singing.
Thanks to Ashley Young for not hiding today, his second half performance was every bit as important as the big man’s goals.
Bring on the FA Cup semi draw and bring on Wembley again.
Damn, wish Wembley last week hadn’t wiped out my finances (I was there for the two nights and beer might have been consumed!) as I really wish I’d not been an armchair fan today.
Oh and hoodoo? I don’t think so!
Stats: Click Here
I believe if we are very good there will be a Glensider away match report will follow later or in the morning.
Brad Friedel 6
Never good at rating keepers but hey, we won! Not sure he was to blame for the goals, the defense left us wide open, he did spill a ball he saved but again, that didn’t cost us.
Carlos Cueller 5.5
Really not the same player when on the right, what is up with Luke Young on the bench all the time, surely he isn’t going to be shipped out come the summer?
James Collins 5.5
Had a shaky game today I think?
Richard Dunne 7.5
Made up for the others
Stephen Warnock 6
Stuart Downing 6
Not the best, not the worst, plenty to come from him, hopefully a good pre-season will also help him
James Milner 6.5
Plenty to do combating a lively Reading midfield
Ashley Young 8
Helped transform the game
Stiliyan Petrov 6
Not his best, not his worst, certainly looks shattered though, squad rotation isn’t really a thing we do though and he always seems keen to play
John Carew 8
On the second half performance, anon like the rest in the first half. Just shows what a danger he is when up for it and when the supply is right though
Emile Heskey 5
Time to put him out of his misery, he gets sort of stuck in but the bits that count he isn’t there for and to miss a one on one like that as a potential world cup candidate isn’t good. Fed up looking for the positives and trying to defend him, I’d have had Delfouneso on in the second half.
Sidwell (on for Downing 91 mins) 10
Inspired performance! :o)
Think the semi is played April 10 when we were meant to be facing Everton, so more fixture changes and long may that continue. Will confirm and do the FA Cup semi final draw when done (after Chelsea/Stoke game)