Date: 25th February 2018 at 1:18pm
Written by:

Langoe66 said in our Villa away to Sheffield Wednesday match thread:

On calming down after the euphoria of seeing an away win yesterday some reflections on the game.

Reading through this thread this morning it’s a bit like the day, a bit of a rollercoaster.

On getting the team news as we walked across the park to Hillsborough we all vented a bit of frustration. If dropping Jedinak why the hell Whelan and not Thor? Why no Calum O’Hare in the squad and as for Onomah starting…this was the biggest frustration of the lot. Simply wtf is that all about?

I was blamed initially of course simply for being there…’Told you, you shouldn’t have come dad, why do match day away always turn into an absolute nightmare when you’re with us?’…..fine way to talk to your old man after he’s driven 100 miles! I pointed out that at that point, we hadn’t kicked a ball and perhaps we should apportion blame after we’d got beaten!….’well that’s inevitable with you here,’was the unsurprising response!

So to the game itself and whether the three selections or non selections which caused the most debate were vindicated. Whelan for me had a decent game. ‘Whelan is a useless donkey’ was one comment on here during the game. Must have been watching a different game to me. Yes he lost possession on slipping once in the first half but he did a job, nothing spectacular but certainly not in the ‘useless donkey’ category. I do worry about Whelan playing in a 4 across the middle of the park but you can’t criticise him yesterday and of course he scored!

So selection of Whelan for me, no complaints.

Onamah’s inclusion is a different matter. Thought he looked quite lively early on but that soon faded and like many others, he failed to have any real impact. Looks for me like he’s going through the motions. Even watching him in the warm up we commented on his laid back almost disinterested look. No co-incidence that we were 2-1 down when he went off. Can’t start again next week surely?!

As for O’Hare, looks like he was injured on Friday so can’t argue with his omission.

So performance generally? Started reasonably well for the first 20 but was really one way traffic after that. Far too open and forced Bruce to change the system towards the end of the half. It was pretty typical of my other away days this year, Reading, Derby, Cardiff and Wolves and I feared for a similar result come 90 mins.

Not much improvement early second half but as the half progressed we looked much more comfortable, Weds rarely threatened and we started to look as though we could get something out of the game, cue Snoddy taking the game by the scruff of the neck, Whelan appearing in the opposition’s box for the first time in many a year, Hourihane scoring another beauty, (his 9th despite being mocked during the game by some posters as ‘a big fairy’ and ‘a waster’) and complete bedlam in the away end as the goals flowed……!

I love away days but the past four years have at times tested even my eternal optimism. I forgot what it was like, that feeling of complete away day euphoria with Villa snatching a late winner, grown men (and women!) jumping around like wild mad men, punching the air and celebrating with anyone around them.

Performance yesterday wasn’t great but the result was bloody fantastic and in years to come that’s what I’ll remember….not the team selection, the lacklustre first half performance, the poor performance of Onomah…it’ll be remembered as the day my away day nightmare ended.. when we scored three goals in 20 odd minutes and I jumped around like a lunatic again….would love a repeat very soon…heaven forbid it’s not another four years! UTV!

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