Friday, 21st August
The aftermath of the European game amounts to the fact that Curtis Davies is a doubt for Monday.
Saturday, 22nd August
There are strong rumours that Steve Warnock is on his way to the Villa, and he is left out of the Blackburn team for their game against Sunderland. As many of you that have read this column will know, I am not a fan of Nicky Shorey AT ALL, so this is good business in my eyes.
Steve Sidwell says we should not be ruled out of Champions League contention just yet. I`m inclined to agree, but there is lots that need sorting.
Sunday, 23rd August
As we get ready for Liverpool at Anfield, NRC and Milner both talk about playing at Anfield with no fear, and going for a win. Given what has gone on so far this season, I don`t hold much hope.
Monday, 24th August
Liverpool 1-3 Villa. Isn`t football a funny old game?
I don`t ask a lot from MON. The majority of what I ask surrounds us playing 4-5-1. Tonight, that was the formation, and we won; at Liverpool, one of the toughest grounds in the country – and probably further afield – to go and get a win.
It was strange; Friedel looked like the keeper we knew he had been, Beye showed why the Newcastle fans liked him, Cuellar and Davies both played somewhere near their ability, Shorey had one of his best games in a Villa shirt. Petrov and Reo-Coker were both superb, Sidwell showed why he is more suited to 4-5-1, Young, Milner and Agbonlahor looked like the front three that had the media talking about them in the early part of last season.
Don`t get me wrong, I`m not saying we dominated, or that Liverpool were not poor – they were. But tactically, this felt like a victory as much as the result itself did. I look at the tactical debacle against Wigan where everything was wrong, then I look at tonight where everything was right – even the late sub of Heskey for Young was spot on, as Heskey won a couple of headers from Liverpool set pieces – and it really makes you wonder how we can go from scale to an other in just nine days.
But the answer to me seems really obvious. FOUR! FIVE! ONE!
Tuesday, 25th August
24 hours on from the win at Liverpool, the Reserve team were not to be outdone, winning 4-0 away at Chelsea in the first match of their title defence. Andreas Weimann, Ciaran Clark (2) and Marc Albrighton got the goals.
Wednesday, 26th August
We agree a fee for Sylvain Distin and we confirm that we are in talks with Blackburn over Stephen Warnock.
Thursday, 27th August
We may have agreed a fee for Distin but it looks like he`s off to Everton. We have agreed a fee for Richard Dunne, though. One deal that is done however is Stephen Warnock, and he is paraded before the Rapid Vienna game. Speaking of
Villa 2-1 Rapid Vienna. You know, I`ve surprised myself with my own apathy about this. I was disappointed, but I found it to be a genuine concern that Spurs and Man City would be playing far less games than us.
Maybe it`s because I don`t really like European games, maybe it`s the Saturday games factor, maybe it`s just my wallet, but overall, I found myself having a definite bright side to tonight.
Don`t get that twisted though – I was still disappointed, and I`m feeling VERY deflated right about now.
Another week gone, and it is the start of my second year of ‘The Week in Villa`. MADNESS! Last week I ended with a rant, this week I end very happy with Monday; disappointed but looking on the bright side about Thursday; positive about signings; proud of the reserves; hoping we remain with 4-5-1 and looking forward to Fulham.
What a difference a week makes !
Speaking of, this time next week the window will be closed EEK!
The Week In Villa #53 (21/8/09 – 27/8/09)
Friday, 21st August