Young Guns Hope for Derby Date After 10-1 Reserve Rout

January 11, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Villa Reserves & Academy 

Reserve team returns for long term absentees Andy Weimann and Gary Gardner saw the latter complete a man of the match performance in an astonishing 10-1 victory over Arsenal’s second string. MacDonald’s youngsters were in deadly form and reached double figures with 5 goals in each half after Arsenal were reduced to 10 men early in the game. Austrian striker Weimann, out of action since a trip to Rapid Vienna early in the season, hit the post in the opening minutes in what proved to be a sign of things to come. Gardner scored the first after 11 minutes before Arsenal had a man sent off shortly after. Gardner then turned provider for subsequent goals from Weimann before crossing for Baker to head down for Chris Herd to score a first in what would prove to be a hat-trick display from the midfielder. Baker then headed down another Gardner cross for Hogg to score before Gardner got a second of the game to complete a first half lesson for the Gunners. Herd got his second midway through the second period from a Forrester corner after the youngster was introduced to replace Hogg at the break. Man of the match Gardner was then withdrawn for Ellis Deeney and may well have earned himself a place in Sunday’s derby squad. Delfouneso then joined the act, tapping home a Weimann cross before grabbing a second shortly after substitute Durrell Berry assisted. Arsenal scored what is surely the most meaningless consolation goal of all time before Herd completed his hat-trick and Weimann bagged a second on his return with minutes to spare. In total 3 for Herd, 2 for Delfouneso, Gardner and Weimann and 1 for Hogg. A fantastic display from Gardner, taken off early, could well set him up for a place on the bench with the possibility of facing brother and former Villan Craig Gardner when Villa make the short trip to St Andrews on Sunday. A hat-trick for Herd and braces for both Delfouneso and Weimann could see Houllier opt for a youthful bench against the Blues. 10-1 against a decent, young Arsenal side begs the question, are the reserves better than the first team squad!

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

Player Review: Why Nathan Delfouneso Deserves His First Team Chance

With my Player Review feature having singled out first team stars Ashley Young and Nigel Reo-Coker to date, I wanted to focus on one of the fringe players staking a claim for a first team place. Gabby Agbonlahor has been out for over a month and it is still unsure when he will return and the clubs striker woes have been added to by injury to Emile Heskey this week. Compile this with a lack of form and goals for John Carew and you start to understand why Villa have scored just 1 in their last 4 matches. The strikers have 1 Premier League strike between them which feel to Heskey with Stewart Downing being the only real threat in terms of goals with 3 in the league thus far. Depressed after reading that? Enter Nathan Delfouneso. Nathan Delfouneso Review

Arsenal Reserves 0-2 Aston Villa Reserves

November 2, 2010 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Villa Reserves & Academy 

Kevin MacDonald’s men built on their decent run of form, following up a win over Midlands rivals Wolves, with a comfortable 0-2 victory over Arsenal. The former caretaker manager took a strong squad with him to London with first team members such as Brad Guzan, Eric Lichaj, Marc Albrighton, Barry Bannan and Nathan Delfouneso all in the starting XI. It was Delfouneso who broke the deadlock on the half hour mark stretching his impressive form in front of goal for the reserves and pushing himself into Gerard Houllier’s plans. With Villa severely lacking in fire power recently the talk has been of bringing in a new striker, one begs the question why are only proven goal-scorer at any level hasn’t been given a chance in the first team as of yet. The 19-year-old was supported superbly from either flank by Marc Albrighton and Samir Carruthers with the former setting crossing for the latter to head home Villa’s decisive second. An impressive performance, in a game which the away side dominated for much of the encounter. Reserves Match Report

Player Review: Nigel Reo-Coker

October 29, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Aston Villa, Player Reviews 

Who better to occupy my second instalment of Player Review than Villa’s new temporary captain, Nigel Reo-Coker. The 26-year-old was handed the honour of the club armband after permanent skipper, Stiliyan Petrov was injured in last weekend’s clash with Sunderland. The knee problem is likely to keep the Bulgarian out of action until the New Year but the unfortunate nature of the injury for Petrov symbolises an unbelievable turn of events in the Villa career of Nigel Reo-Coker. After featuring in 8 of the 9 league games thus far, just 2 less than the whole of last term, the midfielder has impressed new manager Gerard Houllier and fans alike with his tireless performances in the centre of the park. It is perhaps not a surprise that the London born player was entrusted with the captaincy having led both of his previous clubs, Wimbledon and West Ham, from the age of 20. Reo-Coker has also captained Villa on numerous occasions, most notably lifting the Peace Cup in last year’s pre-season, and his ability to lead by example made him an exemplary candidate for the role. The tenacious England Under-21 international will guide his team out for the first time in the league this season against fierce rivals Birmingham on Sunday. Full Reo-Coker Review

Happy Days as the Fonz Topples Rivals Wolves

Kevin MacDonald’s reserve side continued their decent form, stretching their unbeaten run to five games with a 3-2 victory over Wolves. The second string came from behind for the second game on the trot in front of on-looking manager Gerard Houllier. Villa found themselves 1-0 down at the break but an amazing second half saw the home side run out victors. The two line-ups could have easily been placed in an early cup round with seasoned professionals on either side. The Villa side included the likes of Guzan, Cuellar and Sidwell supported by promising youngsters such as Barry Bannan and Nathan Delfouneso. Read more

Curtis Davies and Collins Jnr. Leave on Month-Long Loans

October 15, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Aston Villa, Transfer News 

Reports were circulating this morning in the Daily Mirror that Curtis Davies was set to rekindle his playing career at Leicester City. Aston Villa have now confirmed that the 25-year-old will link up with the Foxes on a month-long loan deal. Leicester, now managed by Sven-Goran Eriksson, who was interviewed for the job at Villa Park, have pounced to sign the out-of-favour centre back in a deal that should benefit all parties. The club have also confirmed that young striker James Collins Jnr, who netted in yesterdays reserve win against Blackburn, has joined League Two side Burton Albion for the same duration. More on Davies and Collins Loans

Villa Reserves 2 – 1 Blackburn Reserves

October 14, 2010 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Villa Reserves & Academy 

Aston Villa’s second string, managed by Kevin MacDonald came from a goal behind at half time to beat visitors Blackburn at Bodymoor Heath. The game was a chance for the youngsters in the set up to show what they could do with Reserve team regulars such as Clark, Bannan and Salifou all unavailable. MacDonald had been linked with the vacant Hibernian post this week but focused on maintaining a decent start to the reserves campaign seeing the claret and blue side unbeaten in their last 4 outings. The match proved to be a game of two halves and indeed two penalties with the returning Nathan Delfouneso clinching the victory for the home side.

Reserves Match Report

New Player Review Feature – Ashley Young

October 13, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Player Reviews 

With the new manager beginning to settle into his job at Villa Park and a traumatic pre-season behind us, exciting news on the Villa front is drying up. In order to get your opinions and hopefully your interest I will be bringing in some new features to the site as well as hoping to strike a deal with the club to get official press releases and images. While I wait upon that enquiry, here is a feature I will be running focusing in on the performances of certain individuals. In a week where he has made his first international starting XI I thought who better to start with then Ashley Young. Remember these are only opinions alongside my player ratings so let me know how you think Young has started the 2010/11 season!

Ashley Young Assessment

Houllier Keen To Keep Reo-Coker and Young, Gabby In For Surgery

October 1, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Injury News 

First of all I’d like to apologise for the lack of posts and action on the site over the past week but I have been away and I’m running this ship single handed currently, but I’m back now and looking forward to a potential Champions League hangover for Tottenham tomorrow! Read more

Next Page »