Date: 25th August 2014 at 11:40am
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Villa face Blackburn Rovers tonight as the under 21 schedule continues, and manager Gordon Cowans has said he feels that increased competition for places will serve us well this season, especially as returning first team players are better incorporated into our second string.

The U21 squad is naturally bigger this year given U18 promotions and players who are ready for this step up, but of course in the one all draw against Stoke on the opening day of their season, Cowans also had Joe Cole, Jack Grealish, Chris Herd and Jores Okore playing their part in the team for differing reasons.

Speaking to the Official Site ahead of tonight’s fixture, Sid said.

‘We’ll look forward to going up there and hopefully getting a result. You’d like to think with what we’ve got we can start going places and winning. We’ve got a much bigger squad now so there is a lot more competition for places, which is healthy.’

Going back to the opener against Stoke, although we only came out with a point, Sid commented that he felt there were plenty of positives we could take and build on from the performance but clearly we need more of a cutting edge in front of goal because we have to start capitalising better on the chances we do create.

‘I thought there were lots of positives. Once they scored, we pretty much dominated the first half from there on. The only thing I was disappointed with was that we didn’t get shots off early enough.’

Cowans goes on to say a lot of the time we were trying to overplay it and looking for an extra pass or two, when really somebody should’ve just tried their luck as even if the initial effort doesn’t work, there’s always the chance of a rebound or a parry for players who are chasing it up and that’s what he’s hoping we’ll do more of tonight.

‘Overall, I thought it was a decent performance.’

No ‘squad’ has yet been announced for this and the game kicks off at 7pm with the normal audio commentary on the OS and social media coverage.

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