Aston Villa Face Blues in Must Win Quarter Final: Match Preview

November 29, 2010 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Match Previews 

Villa travel the short journey to St. Andrews in what is a massive League Cup Quarter Final draw with fierce rivals Birmingham City. The two sides met last month, producing probably the dullest derby in decades and a strong contender for worst Premier League game of the season. Villa were riddled with injuries and remain severely depleted as they look to turn around a poor run of results. A spirited comeback against Arsenal on Saturday was all in vain due to a dire first half display but did encourage some fans ahead of the nail biting clash on Wednesday. Houllier’s side have won just 1 in 9 in the league though they qualified for this stage of the cup with a tense 2-1 extra-time win over Championship Burnley. Birmingham reached the Quarter Finals at the expense of League One Brentford who pushed the Blues all the way but were beaten in a penalty shoot-out. Read more

Villa Continue Dismal Recent Record

November 28, 2010 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Aston Villa, Match Reports 

Gerard Houllier finds his Aston Villa team in an increasingly large rut following a 4-2 defeat to Arsenal due to an abysmal first half performance. The Villans have now won just one game in their last nine Premier League matches coming from an edgy 3-2 win over a massively under strength Blackpool side. The Arsenal loss was Villa’s first league defeat at home and despite a spirited second half fight back Houllier’s men were unable to overturn what was a fortunate 2-0 deficit by half time. Read more

Villa’s Youngsters set to Benefit from Pro-Pires

November 17, 2010 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Aston Villa, Transfer News 

My first rumour mill prediction appears to have come true with Robert Pires close to agreeing a deal with Villa this week. The Frenchman is unattached and therefore is available for an immediate free transfer. At 37 the veteran does represent a minor gamble on Houllier’s part but with only wages to pay to the former Arsenal man the risk is just that, minor. Pires could be in line to make the trip to Blackburn on Sunday if he passes a medical in the next two days. The player feels that this won’t be an issue having trained with his former club, Arsenal for the past two months. The signing would come in the wake of somewhat of an injury crisis at Villa Park with no fewer than 10 first teamers absent last time out. The 2002 Footballer of the Year is seen to be the perfect role model for the likes of Marc Albrighton and Barry Bannan in particular and brings a wealth of top-level experience to benefit the senior squad. Pires has the backing of old boss Arsene Wenger to succeed under compatriot Gerard Houllier at Villa with the former France international eager to get going as soon as possible. What Pires has had to say

10 Games in: Gerard Houllier’s Record and Review

Many neutrals and Villa fans had their doubts over the appointment of Gerard Houllier 2 months ago but how has he really done in his opening 10 games at the club. The pessimistic may have seen the choice of the Frenchman as somewhat of a sideways step after his tenure at Liverpool was left on a low point with the Anfield club. Despite this, Houllier had a terrifically successful spell at the club leading them to Community Shield, UEFA, FA, League Cup (x2) and Supercup glory, a feat which has surpassed any of his successors at Liverpool. After health issues seemed to stunt his progress with the club, many in the Merseyside remember Houllier as a negative and uninspired tactician as he looks to answer the critics who doubted him. Villa have had a stop-start season to say the least and some impressive performances and results have been overlooked due to the sides current inability to close out games. Here is why I believe the new manager has done a decent job in his opening 10 fixtures and why Villa should not be counted out of a European finish. In-depth Managerial Review

Hou’d be a Villa Fan

November 10, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Aston Villa, Match Reports 

Wednesday 10th November 2010

Aston Villa 3-2 Blackpool

Aston Villa did things the hard way, as ever, in a thrilling encounter with Blackpool at Villa Park which saw Houllier’s side get their first win in 6 league games, running out 3-2 winners. A massive shock came when the Blackpool line-up was announced with no less than 10 changes made from the weekends draw with Everton. The remaining player from the 2-2 tie was Keith Southern who made his first league appearance for Holloway’s side on Saturday. Houllier must have seen this as great news but undoubtedly as a banana skin which was very nearly slipped on as his side twice threw away leads to set-up a nervy finish. An 89th minute strike from James Collins wrapped up the win with three points seeing Villa back into the top half of the table. Extended Match Report

Aston Villa vs Blackpool Pre-Match Prediction

November 9, 2010 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Pre-Match Predictions 

Villa play host to newly promoted Blackpool on Wednesday night who have been overlooked in all of their games thus far. The Seasiders have impressed many in their attacking play and deservedly find themselves in mid-table with 14 points from 11 games. Villa lay two places and one point behind Blackpool meaning a win would overtake the visitors with the home side unbeaten at Villa Park in the league this season. If Villa can score first then I’m going to join all those who have been mugged off when predicting against Blackpool and go for a comfortable home win.

Possible Starting XI: Friedel; L Young, Dunne, Collins, Warnock; Albrighton, Clark, Bannan, Downing; A Young; Delfouneso

Key Man: Ashley Young

Goalscorer(s): Bannan, Delfouneso, A Young

Minute of First Goal: 16

Final Score: 3-1

Aston Villa vs Blackpool Match Preview

November 9, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Match Previews 

Wednesday 10th November 2010

Opponent: Blackpool

Venue: Villa Park

Kick Off: 19:45

Villa will be looking to put a turbulent week off the field in the past with a winning performance on it as the Midlands club play host to newly promoted Blackpool. Gerard Houllier must have been ready to celebrate when his side went into the 94th minute of the weekends match with Fulham 1-0 up. A last minute equaliser from Brede Hangeland crushed Villa hearts to put a dampener on an otherwise impressive performance. The result means that Houllier’s side are now without a league win in 5, during which the clubs only two goals have come from Marc Albrighton. Blackpool are having a decidedly happier time in their debut Premier League season having shocked fans and pundits alike to see themselves in the dizzying heights of the top half. Villa lay in 14th place in the league just 3 points above the drop zone but also just 3 points off a 6th placed finish in a tight league table. Extended Match Preview

War of Words Between ‘Disrespectful’ Houllier and ‘Stupid’ Carew

November 7, 2010 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Aston Villa, Villa Reserves & Academy 

Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier has reacted angrily to John Carew’s claims of a lack of respect shown towards him from the Frenchman. The two men did not seem to see eye to eye after the player’s Lyon career fizzled out under Houllier prior to joining Villa. The manager doesn’t exactly mince his words when discussing his assets and launched a scathing attack on a second player in a week after previously criticising Stephen Ireland’s commitment. Since coming to Villa Park the 63-year-old has been very media friendly but not so much to his own team which could be disrupting the harmony at the club. I would advise the pair to do their talking behind closed doors rather than launching unnecessary comments to the press. After a poor run of results the backroom and playing staff all need to be pulling in the same direction to get Villa out of a difficult rut ahead of Wednesday’s must win game with Blackpool. Comments From Houllier and Carew

Hero to Villain – Albrighton Pays Penalty for Late Foul at Fulham

November 6, 2010 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Aston Villa, Match Reports 

Aston Villa missed the chance to climb the Premier League table with a win at Fulham after the hosts equalised in the 95th minute to break Villa hearts. Villa came into the game without a win in 4 and without a goal in 3. These daunting stats were worrying with Villa missing their 3 senior strikers going into the game. A first start for Nathan Delfouneso was the result of Houllier’s injury woes but it was the last Villa player to score a league goal, Marc Albrighton, who gave Villa the lead. The manager also handed a start to youngster Barry Bannan who impressed and set-up the goal expertly. Villa could not hang onto their lead from the first half and dramatic late equaliser from Brede Hangeland but a sever dampener on an encouraging display. Goal-scorer, Albrighton was left with his head in his hands after needlessly giving away the free-kick which assisted the late and bitter blow to the visitors. Extended Match Report

Albrighton Signs New Deal at Villa Park

November 5, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Aston Villa 

Aston Villa have sealed a contract with exciting wing prospect Marc Albrighton. The 20-year-old has signed a 3 and a half year deal which will keep him at the club until the summer of 2014. The news will come as a boost to Villa fans and manager Gerard Houllier after impressive performances have shot the emerging star into the limelight. Villa will have warned off many prospective buyers for the youngster in tying Albrighton down for the next 4 years. Gerard Houllier has acted quickly in ensuring the future of his prized assets remain at Villa Park after defender Ciaran Clark signed a new four year contract this time last week. Chelsea and Manchester United were both credited with an interest in Clark who was keen to stay at Villa to develop his game further. Local lad Albrighton was ‘over the moon’ to sign for Houllier’s side and had plenty of praise for his current club. Read Albrighton’s Comments

Next Page »