Following on from the dark days of the Championship and our previous owner, NSWE clearly have Aston Villa on an upward curve and we have seen year on year improvement so far from head coach Dean Smith.
With a difficult summer, for a variety of reasons, Villa now seem to be finding our groove when it comes to better performances and seeing out results and we’re still not at 100% strength which is promising.
One thing that remains true is how tight-knit the camp seems to be despite all the changes we’ve seen, and whether by default or fluke, shaking up the coaching staff this summer has, if anything, further improved spirits with a couple of fresh voices, ideas and impetus.
This was something Gregg Evans picked up on in a recent podcast for The Athletic as he picked up on Smith’s training methods and how enjoyable the players seem to find them.
Vital Villa’s Dean Smith Forum Thread
“There’s so many players that I’ve spoken to, past and present, who have said that the training sessions at Villa are so refreshing. Dean Smith always finds a way to keep them motivated and keep the sessions different. And that’s a really tough job in itself, especially when you’ve been at a club for a long time, because it can get stale and the same voice can start to grind on you.”
“And you have to find different ways to make the players enthused and motivated – and Dean Smith seems to do that really well. I think what also helps is mixing up the coaching staff as well, which Villa have done.”
Arron Danks’ impact is probably a little harder to see as we continue adjusting to the new 352 formation, but we’ve all seen the almost immediate impact that Austin MacPhee has had with the subtle tweaks to our set piece approaches now, and they are already paying dividends for us.
Whatever Smith is doing off the pitch is working, so long may that continue as there’s still plenty we can improve on and hopefully we’ll see further steps this Sunday in our annual trip to Tottenham Hotspur.