Aston Villa head coach Dean Smith could’ve been forgiven for being a bit disappointed at the fulltime whistle in last Sunday’s final regular Championship clash of the season with Norwich City.
Norwich lifted the Championship title trophy after taking a 2-1 victory on the day, but we certainly made a game of it, especially in light of the number of changes Smith sensibly made with one eye on the upcoming Play-Off matches.
The game did see us lose our unbeaten run, but few cared about that given the form we are in and speaking to the Official Site following the game, Smith revealed that he was delighted with the competition in the group as despite the changes the performance was still very good indeed – despite us lacking some massive players.
Jonathan Kodjia finding the back of the net in the game was a particular source of pleasure for him.
“That’s what I want. I am really pleased that he’s scoring. He got his opportunity because Tammy Abraham was injured. Tammy was fit to play today but I decided against it. I gave him, Tyrone, Jack and John a training session this morning. I think it’s right that we manage their loads and made sure there was no risk of them getting injured today with such a short turnaround before the Play-Off game, which is the most important – but also not to get any silly sendings off. The players who went out there were very fluid with what they were doing. Some players needed minutes – Kortney Hause, Alan Hutton and Henri Lansbury. It was good to change it up today and get players ready for West Brom.”
All eyes to West Bromwich Albion now.