A big match tonight, but all matches are going to be big from now on. You might even say that all matches are must win. Okay, tonight might be 'must draw' to leave the relegation zone, but you know what I mean.

And, thinking like that might not be very nice, but that is the way we have to think. It would be nice to think we can go out to win, but we've got to get the points we can get from now on and if we get a draw, we have to be happy.

When opportunity presents

And tonight is an opportunity. Sure, Manchester City will say publicly that they believe they've got a chance to catch Manchester United, but they don't and we know that and they know that too, but they have to say certain things.

And that help. We are desperate for the three points and they're not. They know they've blown it this season and with that opportunity, we might be able to take advantage. But, it's going to be massive for us to get something tonight and we have to be happy if we can.

And it might very well all come down to one point and if it just so happens we get that tonight, then that is all that matters. If we get more, then we should be ecstatic. If we get more, we shouldn't believe, we should just be happy that we've managed to move forward.

Stats from the BBC

  • Aston Villa have won just one of their last 10 league matches
  • Only QPR have scored fewer goals than Villa in this season's Premier League
  • Villa have not won any of the 13 league matches this season when they've conceded the opening goal (D2, L11)
  • They have lost all nine league matches this season in which they have trailed at half-time
  • Darren Bent has scored seven Premier League goals against Manchester City

Updates and team news

So, with that written, we await team news and the match. I'm not predicting, because my head says one thing and my heart says something else, but I know the optimism will rise later and I'll think something else, so it is probably best I leave that.

Author: Damian
Damian started The Villa Blog as a passion project quite a few years ago while he was living in South Africa. Now living in Sweden, it continues. He's originally from Chasetown and grew up when supporting Villa meant there was a real chance of silverware at the start of every season.
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  • Guest - expat007

    jcvSorry Mate if I had gone through life like that I would have missed some wonderful times watching football.
    You are telling me you never enjoyed watching great players for other English clubs, that's hard to believe!
    I so many fond memories of seeing the likes of Matthews, Finney, John Charles, Jimmy Grieves, Bobby Moore, George Best, Trevor Francis, Gascoigne, Keegan, Cantona, Drogba, Henry, etc, etc.
    I have always wanted The Villa to win, but that has never stopped me appreciating the flair and ability of great footballers.
    I trust that I will never be that fanatical about The Villa that I am too blinded to appreciate great footballers.
    I know it's hard now following The Villa, maybe when we were a top club you were more tolerant?

  • Guest - expat007

    Re READING & QPR. It's hard to be confident given our record and standard of play recently.
    If we can get 6 points we must have a chance of stopping up and that must be possible.

  • I've decided I've changed my mind about Nani's red card. Agreeing with those who said it was a straight red. My head has been turned - there's no going back.

    Fergie scrambling out of his seat. I could have watched that all day.

  • Darren Bent

    Come and save our season for **** sake !

  • Yet another "must win" game is nearly upon us - lets hope this one we actually do win. Most clubs have one maybe two must win games a season we seem to have had half a dozen already with I am sure more to come.

  • Weinmann has scored 10 this season, Benteke 15, its not Bent that we need.

  • If we do get 6 points, we will be fabourites out of the bottom 5 to stay up, it will all but condemn reading and QPR so it will be one from soton wigan and us, and well be favourites on 30 points

  • While it was very funny to see fergie furious like that, it was never a red card, just more bias towards the spanish teams that fifa love so much, like the RVP sending off for arsenal against barca the other season

  • City have the best defense in the league, it will be much much easier to score against reading and QPR, we will defo score at least once, will we be able to keep a clean sheet is the question?

  • .

    How many might Bent have scored if he had been given the opportunity when he was fit?

  • Theres lots to say about the Villa, just goes to you show you what a glory supporting troll you are.

  • Fact, we have not won back to back games this season, that includes playing all the teams around us.
    Can anyone explain to me why we are suddenly going to do that, this is a genuine question as i would be interested to find out as to why other fans are thinking this way.
    Please dont just say you can see improvements as i am sick of hearing that trotted out after yet another defeat, that doesn't put points on the board and right now we need points desperately.
    On the Man City game some were saying our passing was the best they had seen all season, well yes, our passing sideways and backwards was impressive but, as soon as we got in the final third of the pitch we were clueless as they closed us down and stopped us playing with some ease. You only need to look at how many chances we created, or didn't as the case was.
    Sorry if i seem negative but, in reality we are unlikely to win both these games if any.

  • For as many as Weinman and Benteke scored they also missed a few.

  • Weve been playing this for a while now, and i do think we look better than the 352 we played, which while we had some of our worst performances playing that, we also went 6 games unbeaten playing it including the wins away to norwich and liverpool.

  • Your not wrong in anything your saying, but we are playing the only two teams that are below us in the league, and if the league doesnt lie, then we are at least better than those two teams.

    to be honest ive thought our passing has looked pretty slick most of the season, the trouble is we dont have the players to deliver the final ball in the team, we have 2 holding midfielders who its their job to hold so thats ok, we have zoggy whos job it is is to create, however he just dribbles til he can shoot or gets tackled, we then have two wingers/forwards in gabby and weinmann who arent the best at creating because they are both strikers and want to get in the box to score, thus why we are lacking in creating, against the top half teams.

  • You can go on about different systems all day long, if the players are not good enough you' re going to lose a lot more than you win.

  • muz1: that is the bottom line you are correct. For me put our best strikers on and get the ball to them as often as we can, does not have to be pretty anymore our situation is dire and we need to score to give ourselves the best chance of survival, I would be happy with 10 draws, how we survive matters not, its all about survival.

  • I think the players are good enough, they're just not consistant enough, which is most likely down to their age/experience level.

  • I find it interesting to note that quite a few people are disapointed that delph is suspended from the next two games? i thought the general consenus was that he was crap?

  • Mint, what's your POV about the red card Eboue got (ManU vs Citeh) and the Fergie's resulting comments?

    I spoke to a few refs. The consensus was that the only grey area can be the interpretation of Nani's intent. However, studs up is dangerous play whichever way you look at it and that's always potentially a red card offence.

    I take that to mean that the ref legitimately had a cause to send Nani off. Whether he did so or not was open to his interpretation. Hence me changing my mind - I would have been pissed off if it was a Villa player though.

  • Nothing is guarnteed in football, i was only answering the question of why people think we will win, i was simply answering why i think most people think we will win.

  • To give Deplh some credit he has looked better the last couple of games I have seen him. I think you see how poor he is though when you see him play live at the game rather than the tv. His positional play is not good and he seems to bottle out if given a scoring opportunity.

  • all strikers miss some, RVP missed an open goal the other week. At the end of the day if your entering march and your top 2 strikers have 25 goals between them, then its not the strikers who are your problem.

    Midfield are scoring any goals

    defense is letting in far too many.

    GK has been excellent all season long

  • My point was I just think Bent would have matched or beat either Andi or Benteke's tally had he been able to play as many games as they have.

  • Delph looks ok in our midfield. Let's put it that way.

    I think we SHOULD win the next 2 games based on our recent performances. Anything can happen though.

  • As for Bent, I don't think he would have matched Benteke's goal tally this season playing in the team we have currently. I'd agree that however, that Bent and Benteke should have played more games together this season.

    Lambert gave them one game early on (Soton) didn't he - and then went off in a huff about it.

  • My position is that any one who thinks Nani's red was a sending off has either never played football or has a different motive (like roy keane not wanting anyone to do better than he did and how a bitter physco he is)

    Because if you do think its a red, you have to be consistant, their was a cross/corner in the first half where vidic beat the GK to the ball, now he headed the ball over the bar, but the goalkeeper punched him in the head? and vidic required lengthy treatment, tell me how that is any different to what Nani did, when the ball is coming over your shoulder and is up in the air, that is exactly how you controll the ball, it is the mist obvious thing in the world that all he was doing was trying to controll the ball, and if there was no player around, would it of been called high foot? i doubt it, so if its ok to do that and theres no players around, why isit a sending off if you catch a player?

    Going back to my example of the GK, why are overhead kicks allowed arent they dangerous? i remeber John Terry getting kicked in the head when someone was attempting an over head, he didnt get a red?

    And yes all managers back their own team and are bias, Man U have bullied refs in the last 20 years so i have no problem with anyone laughing at Man utd, but i cant see how anyone with a serious face can say that it was a genuine Red card, i personally think it would be a harsh yellow, likewise the GK never got a a yellow for punching vidic in the side of the head.

    Now the whole spansih thing, am most likely wrong, but i dont see too many favourable english decisions being made, i remember when chelsea got cheated out of a final against barca where they had about 4 stone wall penalties.... when RVP was sent off with arsenal beating barca, then there was the the red cards Jose has when he was manager of Inter again against Barca, and now this season with real madrid and Man utd, it seems that Fifa are determined to have spain rule europe and with Barca looking likely to go out, they decided to help Real this year..

    though dont be surpised if some Milan player is sent off against Barca for no apparent reason

  • JCV, it's hobson's choice for me.

    For our CM's, I would drop Westwood and go with El Ahmadi - he's fairly skilful and intelligent and Holman - who can score occasionally and works hard. Those two would make a reasonable fit with Gabby and N'Zog in a 4-4-2.

  • mintvilla,

    therein lies the main problem, our midfield very rarely score goals and very rarely create chances for our frontmen, and, if you're not scoring it puts more pressure on the defence to keep a clean sheet. Many times this season i have seen the opposition get the ball in our half and our midfield not tracking back picking players up.
    If players cant get the basics right at this standard they will soon be found out.
    IMO, the midfield has been our major problem all season.

  • Mint,

    Interesting post. Food for thought about Fifa. I'll be watching out for that.

    As a direct Interpretation the rule book though, it does appear the red card was legitimate. Agree with you about the consistency of decisions - and some of the politics involved.

  • pitbull inferno,

    " I think we SHOULD win our next 2 games based on our recent performances"

    Enlighten me, our form has been very poor while QPR have better recent form than us.

  • muz1

    Am mainly looking at how we have played as a team and who we have played against compared to the qualities of QPR and Reading.

    Looking at our last game - I doubt QPR or Reading would have been able to contain our strikers quite so effectively as Man City. It's not for nothing that their defence is the best in the league - I was really impressed, anyway.

    QPR's goal threat is nothing to write home about and seeing as the defence is the weakest part of our team, then that augurs well for us.

    Reading are poor all around with only a few exceptions. As long as we look out for Le Fondre we should be ok.

    With a front line of Gabby / N'Zog / Weimann (or Bent) / Benteke - we should be too much for both of them.

    Our last 4 games, we've played as well as we've played all season. If we carry on, I can see us nicking a few results and staying up.

  • abz1888,

    While I agree KEA looked tidy against Man City, I have my reservations about him in a game of this importance.
    From what i have seen of him this season he bottles 50-50 challenges, and with both teams scrapping for their lives there will be plenty of these flying about.
    Not sure if we have any options but, if we have we need someone in there who is not afraid to put theirselves about.

  • pitbull inferno,

    Mate i hope you're right with your assumption. :):)

  • muz - I hope so too. Agree about KEA, looks a bit lightweight. I think he'd nick it for me purely because Westwood (and Delph) isn't that great at knowing when to play the strikers through. It was getting a bit embarrassing against Man C, all of our strikers got pissed off about it at various points in the game.

    bobvillan - that's a good shout.

  • pitbull inferno I hope PL is not as complacent about Loic Remy as you are. Jay Bothroyd if he plays and Bobby Zamora too, any of these will give our defence the run around and thats before the likes of Taarabts in midfield QPR worry me greatly.

  • QPR and 'Arry have put the club on the edge if the do not stay up they could well go bust according to what I have read this morning, and there were those who think 'Arry would be good for us? QPR to become the new Portsmouth and the common denominator is?

  • Against QPR we will need to stop Taarabts and I question who we have who is capable? Sylla needed game time Arsenal and Man City games we would probably not expect (if we are honest) to win may have been the ideal games to have played him in, I think it is too risky to play him from the start against Reading or QPR these games are just too big and important.

  • Guest - expat007

    Good Afternoon All,
    Good to see so many posting today.


    I hope I have not missed the point. What I am trying to emphasize is the fanatical criticism of today’s fans of other Clubs, Players and Managers by too many fans of all Clubs, not just the Villa.

    You mention teams of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s and that is my point. Over the years fans have been lest appreciative of the football and no longer can see any good other than in their own Club. Then when your Club has little to offer as in the Villa case, we tend to take it out more on the opposition to try to compensate for our Clubs shortcomings.

    In the old days we were far more tolerant. I could no doubt post this on any Premiership Club’s Blog site. Its not just Man U that get the hate mail, the number on here that dislike, that’s being kind all London Teams, the Cockney Ba*tards. Too many cant stand the Scousers, they make every excuse to show that Newcastle support is not that good because there a one City team even though the population is a quarter of Brum. I could go on.

    It is the continual abuse that I cant understand. it’s ‘The three wise monkeys’ in reverse "see no good, hear no good, speak no good".

    There may be many causes of this intolerance. No longer can most football supporters afford to go to visit other teams matches, in the early seventies it was the cost of a pint now its an arm and a leg. TV coverage now picks up everything, managers are exposed and now forced to be interview immediately after the match when their emotions are still not under control. A good example of that was they stopped Fergie from being interview after the Real Madrid match as they knew his, shall we say enthusiasm might get the better of him and he would be banded for every more!!! That would suit some on here. One of the reasons I liked John Gregory was 'Wore his heart on his sleeve' and spent much of his time at the Villa in the Directors Box.

    If you have got this far, that’s the end of the sermon, no offence meant and trust none taken.

  • Football today uses sports science to the degree where players have every part of their make up monitored in pursuit of the perfect specimen, how far they run, heart rate, etc etc. We can no longer compare players from different era's and also players themselves today choose a club on the basis of what they will earn and it's geographical location, something that did not really come into play until recently.

  • just to pick you up on that expat.Did they stop Fergie being inteviewed? Why are they going to charge the club then for him not speaking or letting his players speak which you are legally obliged to in the CL? Not calling you out but im interested.

  • Guest - expat007

    mintvillaTI certainly don’t always agree with jonnah, but that a bit over the top, everyone on here has the right to present his views.
    As to the Glory Supporting, put me down for some of that as it gives me no pleasure in The Villa being nearly down and out.

  • Guest - expat007

    mintvillaNo problem at all with that and it would be interesting to see this line up.
    Lowton; Vlaar; Clarke; Baker.
    Westwood; Ahmadi; N’Zogbia.
    Gabby; Bent; Benteke.
    Bench: Given; Lichaj; Ireland(Sylla); Weimann; A.N. Other.
    Could be SH1T OR BUST!!! But we must score and win, nothing else is acceptable.

  • Guest - expat007

    sjh It would appear that they thought that the Club being put on charge was the lesser of two evils as Fregie was on fire and they did not know how to put him out. Also if you saw the players reaction after the final whistle and they could not be trusted either. Although they have tried to keep it under wraps it appears that some within the club could not keep their mouths shut!!
    It would have been wonderful to have seen Fergie interview, how many shots would there have been on Utube:D:D:D:D

  • Guest - expat007

    Sorry what I should have pointed out that it was put to Fergie that he should not be interview because of his past record of his after Rafael da Silva's dismissal in United's quarter final defeat, three years ago.
    It would appear that reluctantly he agreed as it would be a repeat offence. They will still get wracked, but they must hope not as bad as him fouling mouthing off at the ref!! Again I would have love to have seen it.

  • Guest - Mcgrath55555

    From one Villa fan to many others can i ask for all your help in completing my dissertation. just need a few questions answering.


  • Guest - DC_Villan

    News that Ajax is looking to ship Christian Eriksen off to a PL team this summer. Rumours are that Liverpool and Spurs are the main parties interested. What I don't understand is that they have so many players that occupy the same type of position i.e. Holtby, Siggurdson, Dembele, Dempsey, and even Bale sometimes now too with T'ham and Liverpool just bought Coutinho for the exact same role.

    Eriksen will have only one year left on his contract this summer and is the exact type of creative player we could desperately use right now (Ireland is done, and even though N'zog is doing better as of late he still sorely lacks the vision that we need to utilize the likes of Benteke, Bent, and Weimann). Imagine 4 years ago when we actually could have competed to sign a player like this... We ****ed up the transfer for Dempsey last summer because he didn't want to play for us, then in the January window we ****ed up the deal for Coutinho.

    It hurts to think that this is what our club has come to... Signing unknown MLS and second tier french league players that get us nowhere.

  • Guest - DC_Villan

    Also, I think we need to keep running with the same formation, we have been playing some decent football recently and our last two games were against the likes of Arsenal and Man C. The only adjustments would be ideally Vlaar in at CB if he's fit and move Baker out to LB, and then El Ahmadi in for Delph. Sylla will probably need to be used as a sub in the next two games so I hope he's up for the challenge (he better be after we dropped 2 mil on him). Anyone know where the little hobbit Bannan has been lately? He might have to see some minutes as well unfortunately. Clarke has obviously been very dodgy lately so I wouldn't mind resting him a game and keeping Bennett in the line up. The last two games were the best I've seen him play, although that is still not saying very much :(

  • Guest - expat007

    DC_VillanI think you can give up on any thought of The Villa being interested in any transfer deals until the summer. Nothing is going to be decided until the fallout of this and the previous seasons has been sorted to the satisfaction of the owners, The Lerner Trust.
    The permutations are so numerous as The Yank, The Fat Controller and Rab C will need to know the outcome of relegation battle, what players will be leaving, i.e. Benteke, Weismann, Bent etc., what is the wage bill of those contracted and still cant be disposed of and of course what league Villa will be in and what income is to be generated in that league.
    As you so rightly say ‘It hurts to think that this is what our club has come to’ yes its fair to say we are totally fu*ked, up the creek, on the Titanic and in the sh one t.

  • Guest - expat007

    DC_VillanBennett as a Left Back? That not his best position, that is ‘left back behind’ in the coach. Play Clarke at CB and Baker at LB, not good but better than having Bennett in defense!!! Bennett in defense is like having Dracula working in the Hospital Blood Bank!!!

  • (DC_Villan): Spurs will sell Bale if they get a big enough bid.

  • Lambert now saying he has found it difficult to leave out the club's experienced stars.

  • Guest - Griffb23

    After the release of the annual figures talk sport reckon were f....d

  • Guest - Trinity London

    Evening Villa Faithfull.

    Question for debate.

    I know he has been immense at times this season, but does anyone feel we play hoof ball and are one dimensional with Benteke on the pitch ?

    Just a thought.

  • Guest - muz1


    we were ****ed before the release of the annual figures. :):):)

  • When needs must we have to play our best players that will give us a fighting chance to stay up.

    N'zogbia is coming into form which is a good thing. Now when Bent is back we play Bent and Benteke up front.

    Weimann is a good player in the making BUT he is not the player that will get us out of the situation right here right now. We have to put the fear of god into the oppositions defence. Weimann is NOT the player to do this right here right now !

    Everyone thinks Weimann is great, we need to look beyond Weimann for the 10 remaining games to pull us through. Bent comes back we play him, N'zogbia now back in form, and we terrorise the opposition defence.

    I don't really know why I should be talking about this because Benteke and Weimann have scored goals but they cannot elevate us from our current position.
    Weimann and Benteke has been going all season and we are in the bottom 3.
    **** that, it's Bent and Benteke if we want to get out of this!!!

    Think outside the box, it's not worked with Weimann and Benteke.

    We play Bent and Benteke up front from now on.

    Or are some still happy plodding along with Benteke and Weimann up front?

    Bent back he plays with Benteke from now on!

    Or do we just limp out of this league because some Villa fans including Lambert, love Weimann ?

  • Guest - muz1


    Agreed, also any falling out between players and manager needs to be put on the back burner while we fight for our lives.

  • (Griffb23): Talksport is just tabloid radio, its a joke of a station whose opinions and views are meaningless.

  • jonnah: if Bent is fit he has to start simple as.

  • Guest - expat007

    jcv Where are you mate.
    Its getting desperate on here. Just come in from the bar and decided to see what has been posted since I went for a drink or two and what do I find! Five (5) posters in well over three hours, this is the depth that we have sunk to.
    Villa fans are so despondent that they can no longer bother to contribute! I have made the effort. Why! I haven’t got a fu*king clue maybe I thought it will help to get us motivated to inject a little enthusiasm before the Reading game.
    I cant enthuse myself so why I think I can help other Villa fans to have a feel good feelings, God only knows. I try desperately to be confident that the Villa will turn over Reading, fu*king Reading not Man U, Man C, Chelsea, its Reading a nothing Club and I fear the result.

    As someone posted earlier, what have Aston Villa come to, it’s the pits and it is very difficult to be passionate any longer following The Villa.

    Still you, me and other long standing fans are cursed and whatever the outcome of the next two games and this season we will still be lumbered next season and the seasons after that. It’s a marriage without the option of divorce and we are committed and will go to the grave following The Villa.

  • Muz, Wind,

    Agreed lads, there is nothing that we can do with our defence, they will continue to ship goals as its proven all season.
    The way to get out of it is to put more emphasis on our strikers to remove the pressure from the back line.

    Bent has to play !

  • It has to be the Kevin Keegan philosophy: if you score 3 we will score 4.

  • Guest - gmjvilla

    I know this a football blog but my thoughts go out to Christina Edkin's family tonight. I live in London but makes me realise knife crime is not just a London problem. A girl taken before her time.

  • Jonnah

    I think Bent is as good as gone mate, can't see him wanting to stay anyway as he hasn't really come out with anything suggesting he likes it at Villa.

    We do need to get more goals though, it seems to be all about that final delivery and Gabby sprinting down the left wing isn't really doing it. What about if we were to move Bennett up to left mid and bring in Lichaj as a left back instead? Bennett looks like he can cross and attack pretty well but can't defend to save his life.

  • Guzan

    I can only look to Bent's last game. He came on, transformed the team and we scored two goals, in which he uplifted the team in the process against West Ham. It was the last game that we have won.

    We have to change something, we cannot just go along as we are for the next 10 games, hoping and thinking that we can pull through. Lambert has plans and choices that he only can make.

    The defence is not going to change and will continue to leak goals between now and the end of the season, as we have seen all season, there is nothing the team can do about it. So the strikers have to try and make up for the loss that our defence keeps making.

    What we have to do is try and remove the pressure from the defence by putting more pressure on the oppositions defence.

    Weimann is not the player that can achieve this. Darren Bent is.

    We have 10 games left, and as we have seen this season it's obvious that how we play has not worked.

    What can be any worse than playing Darren Bent from what we have seen this season ?

    Darren Bent has not come out complaining about what has happened over the course of season, kept himself to himself. We cannot just sit still as we have seen from the last 15 games or so, we have to do something.

    Darren Bent is a Villa player, and from what I have seen particularly in his last game against West Ham, he wants to play, we need to change tack.

    Score more goals, make the opposition become more worried about playing Villa by playing Darren Bent, which will relieve pressure on our back four because it's clear the system or players that we are playing is not working, and has been a total failure moving through the season.

    Do we just carry on as we are doing nothing ?

    Why wouldn't we change the strike force. What have we achieved this season? We have not scored that many goals. Why not put at 20 goal a season striker back into the team knowing that the likes of N'Zogbia is playing better.

    We have to do something, we cannot just carry on as we are!

    Why should we not play Darren Bent, i'm still dumbfounded that a 20 goal a season player is not playing in a team that is 3rd from bottom of the league.

  • Jonnah,

    Not saying we shouldn't play Bent, just that I don't think Lambert will. He doesn't seem to be part of the "plan" for some reason which I can't quite understand myself! I just try not to care too much now as it p****s me off to no end and I don't like being in a bad mood, especially when none of my mates are Villa fans eh?

    I should probably get some sleep now

  • Guest - Bobby 6 Killer

    Bent was injured the past 2 games.

  • Guest - Blitzballer

    Lambert wont be going even if we do go down apparently...

    Paul Lambert will retain his job as Aston Villa manager next season, irrespective of whether or not the club stays in the Premier League.

    The Scot has been assured that his position is safe by Villa's power-brokers ahead of two matches in the next eight days that will have a crucial bearing on the outcome of the club's season

    Villa travel to Reading tomorrow and then host QPR as they look to kick-start a season that has only sporadically threatened to kick into life.

    The club's supporters are experiencing their third flirtation with the drop in as many seasons with Lambert claiming just five victories in the league since taking over from Alex McLeish.

    Despite a triumph at Manchester City in the early rounds of the Capital One Cup, humiliation followed after Villa were defeated by League Two Bradford City over two legs in the semi-final.

    A further embarrassment in the FA Cup at Millwall also upset the club's support who have seen just three wins in 14 matches at Villa Park this season.

    They are in the bottom three at present due to an inferior goal difference to Wigan Athletic. It will be the first time since 1987 that the club has dropped out of the top-flight, if Lambert fails to improve the current situation.

    However, it appears that American owner Randy Lerner has little appetite for change, despite the financial impact that demotion would have on a club that only last week posted significant losses.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2289919/Paul-Lambert-told-job-safe-Aston-Villa-down.html#ixzz2MvdvvAH8
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

  • Jonnah

    Bent for Weimann?

    Bent for Agbonlahor

    makes more sense to me if scoring goals is what we need to do [and we do]

  • If we are going with Bent and Benteke then we need to play with width, N'Zogbia has to play one side but the left side is more of a problem Weimann is not a natural winger but Gabby looks totally unfit.

  • If we play with Bent and Benteke the whole team will be given a natural boost. Confidence will sweep through the team that has not been evident all season. Imagine if you're the opposition manager and just been given Villa's team sheet an hour before kick off and you see Darren Bent and Christian Benteke's names in the starting XI.

  • Readings 1st choice striker Pavel Pogrebnyak is still suspended. Winger Jimmy Kebe still out injured, plus their 1st choice goalkeeper Adam Federici is a doubt for tomorrow.

  • When you see what Wigan did to Reading - surely we can beat them or are below even Wigan now as a club?

  • One report says that Readings 1st choice keeper Adam Federici is a doubt for tomorrow. Another report says that goalkeeper Alex McCarthy (shoulder) is still out injured. Perhaps they do not have a goalkeeper fit at all, and we can shoot into an empty net ! ;)

  • Guest - Granger

    Jonnah I like your optimism about us shooting into an empty net rather than at one

  • Belfast Telegraph

    'Villa players to blame - Dublin'

    "Dion Dublin insists Aston Villa's players have to shoulder the full responsibility for an "absolutely woeful" season ahead of Saturday's relegation clash at Reading.

    "Former Villa striker Dublin believes Villa boss Paul Lambert should have paired strikers Christian Benteke and the currently injured Darren Bent on a more regular basis."

    But Dublin claimed: "I thought Villa might have played Benteke and Bent both up front but there is something gone on. We don't know what it is.

    "Bent is a goal scorer, you can play him in the fourth division or Champions League and he will still score goals. Having both of them up front would have given Villa more of a chance of having a better position in the league and scoring more goals."

    * See even Super Dion Dublin says that Bent and Benteke should be playing together more often.


  • Dion Dublin was a top quality and respected Aston Villa striker, he knows what is best for Villa moving forward.

    If Dublin says when fit, we should play Bent and Benteke together, then we should do !

  • Granger ha ha... Reports also say that this La Fondre has gone missing in front of goal, plus also Jason Roberts is out injured.

    Could it be the best time to play Reading with all their injuries and suspensions... ?

  • It certainly ought to be but I suspect Reading are looking at us and thinking the same, they must think we are there for the taking- and sadly its hard to argue.

  • Wind

    It could be like watching two pub teams tomorrow ;)

  • Guest - expat007

    jonnah & windofchangeYes and neither could run a piss up in a brewery!! :D:D:D

  • expat

    And neither would be able to find the brewery in the first place !! ;);)

  • James Nursey on Twitter:

    Speaking after Lambert's press conference today.

    James Nursey ‏@JamesNursey
    "#AVFC Lambert says Vlaar trained last 2 days and appears likely to return tomorrow."

  • Has anyone seen or heard official notification that our Chief Scout - Henke has officially left the club ?

    He was due to leave middle of February.

  • Guest - expat007

    jonnahDoes it matter and anyway The Yank will be glad to get him off the pay roll. Next one Lambert????;);)

  • Guest - Desperate Villan

    How about this side???

    Guzan (Awesome all season-lets hope he don't go!)
    Lowton Vlaar Baker Lichaj
    Carruthers Westwood Delph/Sylla N'Zogbia
    Bent Benteke

    Everyone heard how well Warnock has been doing at Leeds???

    Time to bite the bullet Lambert and play the lads with the ability to get us out of this.

    Warnock was a good steady left back and we froze him out for Bennett who is never a premier league player YET!

    Clarke is very overated, to error prone and never looks in control of situation,

    Baker is similar but has much more potential & a hell of a heart if he is controlled by Vlaar

    However both of them were blooded into the side to quickly so not their fault by any means

    Weimann is another that i think people allow his goals to overshadow the fact he is not quite ready YET to be the player we need

    Gabby is not the player he was, but in all honesty for me was never more than a substitute forward

    As for Ireland, what the ?uck are you people watching, he has offered nothing for years and i was actually a fan of the deal that brought him here, how i have had to eat humble pie on that one

    You could argue Bent doesn't offer much but his goal record speaks for itself and as others have stated "how can a team in our position be turning our noses up at a 20goal a season striker???"

    I have said before Lerner has not done much wrong for me until January,

    He got in the manager many fans wanted and gave him 23million to spend,

    How many teams ABOVE US have had that amount to spend?????

  • Expat

    Yep next one Lambert bring in Gianfranco Zola !!

  • Timothy Abraham on Twitter:

    Lambert's post press conference.

    Timothy Abraham ‏@TimothyAbraham
    "Karim El Ahmadi doubtful for tomorrow's trip to Reading with an ankle injury. Ron Vlaar should be back, Darren Bent likely to miss out."

  • Guest - The Black Pearl

    Bent is injured (foot) and out for this game.

  • This game looks like it has come too soon for Bent.
    Hopefully and it looks like Bent will be back next week against QPR.

  • Desperate Villan

    Some good points you make on your post mate !

  • If we can't beat Reading tomorrow, it's over for us as far as I'm concerned. Reading are the poorest team in the prem currently by my reckoning.

  • All this talk of Bent - isn't he injured?

  • I said this before the Wigan game - and here I am still saying it, still while there are games left and its mathematically not over there is something to cling to.

  • Reading are starting with their 3rd choice goalkeeper tomorrow, the other two are injured !

    If that's not an incentive to go and win this game then I don't know what is ?
    Shoot on site should be the orders !

    Stuart Taylor ex Villa GK will be playing against us.

  • Guest - expat007

    jonnahThat does not excite me to much, I seem to remember a unknown goalkeeper, what was he called, um; thats it Nigel Spinks did he not play ok playing well somewhere in Holland!!!!

  • d-day tomorrow guys,day of reckoning 3 points or goodbye.Time to see what these guys are truly made of!!!

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