Aston Villa manager Steve Bruce has said he’s expecting an interesting run in for the side given the shape of the table and the sides we have yet to face and I guess he’s far from alone in that thought.
Although Villa sit only one point ahead of Fulham in third place in the table, we do have a game in hand on those immediately below us but most eyes are rightly looking up.
Four points now separates us from Cardiff City in second spot and the automatic places and although Wolverhampton Wanderers are yet to really wobble, their slight dip in form in recent times sees the gap to them now stand at ten points.
Whether that’s ten points too many, we’ll find out over the remaining eleven games of the Championship campaign but key to our chances will be the game this weekend as we host them at Villa Park for a late kick off.
The match won’t of course decide our overall promotion hopes or the battle for second spot, but it could in many ways decide whether or not top spot remains an option for us.
With bragging rights up for grabs, taking victory could put us within a point of Cardiff depending on their result against Birmingham City, but for Wolves specifically closing that gap to seven points could well put the pressure on them enough to force a stumble with others closing in – especially as they are yet to face Cardiff in their own run in.
Take six points from both sides, and maybe see them cancel each other out in their tie and things will look a lot healthier for us – presuming of course we don’t slip up ourselves!
The point wasn’t lost on Brucie as he spoke to the Official Site after the Sunderland victory.
‘Let’s enjoy that challenge because they’ve been there to be shot at for a long period of time. If we can turn them over then it makes the race even more exciting. Cardiff are only three points behind them as we speak, too. It’s going to be one interesting run in.’
With Villa expecting a crowd nearing sell out for the game, the atmosphere will be on the mark and now it’s over to the players to rise to that and ensure they step up with so much potentially riding on the result.
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