I was speaking to an old work colleague the other day and he asked if I was still blogging, I said I was but that it wasn't so often. He knew straight away why and you all know too. It's a horrible place where we find ourselves at the moment and it isn't new, we've been here before this season and we've flirted with it all season.

And I could go into why we are here, but that isn't worth it and there is no point right now. Let's just leave it at having an owner that simply doesn't care, despite what words we will get thrown at us and we've got a club, from the bottom up that have lost all belief.

Ultimately, when the people running and the person that owns the club don't care, it trickles down and that is why I'm not feeding you with daily posts about how this can be fixed, because you don't need to be a rocket scientist to know how it can be fixed.

But sometimes, you hear or read something that just makes sense, or doesn't and sometimes you have a moment of clarity. And if we're relegated, that is going to be a massive wake up call for some, because here is something else we've got to quickly get to grips with; if we go down, I don't think we're coming straight back up, in fact I'm fairly sure of it.


One of the things that I can't get my head around at the moment is what Arsenal fans must be thinking this week. News was published that they have cash reserves of £123.3m and they're currently sitting in a Europa League place.

They've sold their best player in the last two summer transfer windows and I know one supporter that predicted this happening if they didn't go out and bring in the right players and we can all see that they didn't bring in the right players.

A coupe of years ago I predicted Arsenal to win the league and I still think they can next season, but they are three players short and without Champions League football, we all know it will be much harder to get the players they need. Arsenal have so very nearly missed the boat and if they finish outside of the top four this season and Spurs keep hold of Bale and strengthen in the summer, they could become the next Liverpool.

And what I don't understand is how the Arsenal fans must be feeling, knowing they are paying the highest season ticket price in the Premier League but have little or no chance of winning the league. Why pay the highest price for a season ticket to not compete and for the money to sit in the bank?

Red Rafa

I know that has nothing to do with us but me writing about the rant Red Rafa had last night does, because right now we're in trouble and rather than bitch and moan or talk about protests, we need to be fully supportive of the team.

We've got 24 points and while I don't think we'll need 40 to stay up, I think it might be close and with eleven games to go, we really do need to win five of our remaining fixtures and as if by coincidence, I think of the six home games we have left to go, we can pick up most of those wins at Villa Park.

Red Rafa was talking about the need for Chelsea supporters to support the team or they could find themselves out of the Champions League and we need to support the team or find ourselves out of the Premier League and as I wrote above, if that happens, it could be some time before we come back.

Manchester City

I know this post isn't all Aston Villa, so I'm leaving it on Aston Villa and the match on Monday night and this one is winnable. Don't get me wrong, Manchester City are tough and odds have them as clear favourites to win, but they've lost the league this season and they are there for the taking.

But we also need Liverpool to win or at the very least take a point at Wigan because we need the incentive. If Wigan win on Saturday, our players go into this match knowing that even if they do win we're still in the bottom three and that isn't a great place to be.

We need the chance to get out of this bottom three, because that's what it all comes down to now; taking the chances that are in front of us and if we don't have them, I fear some of our players will think 'what's the point'.

If Wigan win, Monday is going to be very tough, but if we have the chance to leave the bottom three, I think we can. It all comes down to how other teams and that is depressing.

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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  • On subject,

    Speaking to my Man City mate that was at their previous game last week against Chelsea. He reckoned Man City played ok but has completely resigned himself to the fact that Man Utd have won the league and they can't catch them.
    He actually went onto to say that Villa have got a good chance of getting something from the game because the fans are dejected due to Man U being so far ahead.

    A glimer of hope for tomorrow night from a Man City fan accepting their title has all but gone.
    Will it transfer onto the pitch with their players .....

  • Guest - expat007


    Yes I saw that. The Headline only said that FIFA were thinking of changing to having the World Cup played in winter.
    When I saw that they were saying it was for Qutar World Cup my reaction was, do they not know they do not have a fu*king winter there its hot there all the time, Prats!!!!

  • As crap as we have been this season at least, as it stands now, our future is in our own hands. We can start by beating Man city tomorrow - and why shouldn't we?

  • Guest - expat007


    We can start by beating Man city tomorrow - and why shouldn't we?
    Well there no law against it, but don't bet your house on it!!!;);)

  • Expat

    No I wouldn't - but it's Man City, MAN CITY! Who are they anyway? Why shouldn't I expect Villa to beat Man City? Man City? Who are they?

  • Guest - Vital_Loans

    MAN CITY! Who are they anyway? Why shouldn't I expect Villa to beat Man City?

    Maybe because not only are they the current Champions but they are also the richest club in the world and have spent hundreads of millions assembling a really strong and tallented team. That's why we shouldn't but there is always hope that we might nick it. What a nice 3 points that would be :)

  • Come on? Don't bring facts, data and statistics in to this! Who are they really?

  • Pace :D:D

    I hope we don't take an early lead tomorrow. It's usually the death of us. I'd settle for a 0-0 or 1-0 to city at half time. Having seen a single match yet where we've properly turned up for the second half after going in ahead...

  • Pitbull

    I've also thought this - ideally we score the only goal on the 90th minute!

  • Expat007

    Comment #25505 Glad to see some are still grasping at straws:

    Glad to see you a true to form!

    The comment doesn't cast any opinion other than those teams are all included in the mix goal diff of no goal diff. I don't think that it is grasping at straws merely stating a fact, I do think you like the sound of your own opinion however.

    Equally I think it is a little unfair of your to castigate fans for supporting lambert its up to them, maybe they have chosen to go to another blog were people discuss rather than belittle.

    Please note I am pro Villa not pro Lambert and only want the best for my team - sadly I may not get that any time soon.

  • Guest - Rocco

    Just on newsnow aston villa and it said striker happy to sign new deal !!

    How excited was I till I saw that it was Gabby !!!!!!

  • Guest - Ftkv

    Anyone see mu old man
    Interesting facts
    Yesterday 125 yrs since we invented the league
    Tomorrow is our 800th prem game

  • Guest - expat007


    little unfair of your to castigate fans for supporting Lambert its up to them,
    I have no problem with any Villa fan supporting the manager, any manager of the Club even though now many of thousands and I do not feel that this one is fit for the job and should have been sacked at Christmas.

    The ones that I cannot come to terms with are those who obviously put their trust in Lambert over and above their loyalty to the Villa. Any so called Villa fan who puts forward the argument that the Club should retain the services of Lambert even allowing for him to relegate the Club in order to give him time to rebuild the team is unforgivable IMO. Relegation is and has always will be totally unacceptable.

    The so called ‘I have total faith in PL’ will do and say anything, try and find any excuse to support their star. To me this is idol worship. If they cannot see that this man has failed The Villa miserably and his record is abysmal. He has not the charisma and is just not up to managing a great Club and they will also say to plead their case by stating that Aston Villa FC is no longer a Great Club. As a Villa supporter to me this is Treasonable!

    Its only Aston Villa FC that matters and no one individual is greater than the Club and no one will ever convince me differently.

  • Expat007 - fair play on this we agree and I was not clutching at straws

  • expat

    even though now many of thousands and I do not feel that this one is fit for the job and should have been sacked at Christmas.

    It is just unfortunate then that the 30+ thousand that go to VP do not agree with you. Even PL himself has commented how he has been humbled by the support he has been given but as you cant understand him you would not have known that.:):):):):)

  • Guest - expat007


    30+ thousand that go to VP
    How many would be there be at Villa Park if they did not have invested in a season ticket and the thousands on away supporters? Even my seat is occupied nearly every match in the Trinity, but if we go down I will no longer be a season ticket holder at Villa Park since 1977 and that’s a fu*king long time! But that will not stop me supporting The Villa, but it will saving some money by not watching crap Championship football
    Even PL himself has commented how he has been humbled
    If he was an honorable man he would fall on his sword and not be taking his enormous salary for failure, he is just like the bankers, greedy!

  • Guest - paulb

    I cant see any other result than a defeat tomorrow night. Where can anyone gleam the optimism that we might avoid the inevitable. I cant even get optimistic of getting anything from the Reading and QPR games let alone Citeh. But this has been the trend all season so many think that this is suddenly going to come right, we will get a string of results and disappear to mid table safety. It simply aint going to happen. He has assembled a poor squad, poor buys little or no tactical plan, poor substitutions poor manager. We will get relegated, my main concern now is that we are heading the same way as Wolves.

  • Guest - expat007

    I have just looked it up and it looks like on average the number attending Villa Park for Premiership matches with Season Tickets (about 23,000) and with the away supporters is about 26,000. This is no an exact figure but it will only be a 1000 or so either side. It will be interesting how many of the 4,000+ buying for each home game will continue to do so if thing don’t turn around soon?
    I will try and keep a record of the home attendances to see the trend between playing Fulham and Sunderland at home and those attending to see Man C, Chelsea and Liverpool. I have always thought that some come to see the opposition as well as The Villa.
    In the long distant pass I used to have to travel to all parts of the UK and would pick out the top matches being played in the area I was stopping and go to see the best sides, always of course in the home sectors.

  • Guest - expat007

    Agree totally, the record does not lie and wishing does not help.
    BUT; Never give in until it is certain that the Villa are down, there is still a chance of Premiership football at Villa Park next season.

  • Guest - expat007

    God night all,
    I am looking forward to the Man C match, not holding out to much for a win, a draw would be nice!

  • Guest - paulb

    I am I think like you a seasoned campaigner. My first game was May 4 1963 v Forest lost 2-0 Dougan was CF.(50yrs this May) Claret and Blue blood handed down by my Grandad and Dad. I agree with your sentiment and of course I still harbour that hope that somehow we will get out of this mess. But with every game the chance gets smaller and smaller and without doubt I do not think we can survive without max points against Reading and QPR. We will still be here after Lerner and the like go, I just hope thats sooner rather than later. I will keep the faith !!!!

  • evening jcv,

    I said last week can anyone let me know where we are going to win 4 or 5 games from, as some seem to think thats going to happen and where do they think this upturn in form is going to come from, I got no answers.
    Like you say we have won 1 game since jan 15th, and, i hope i am wrong but, i dont have the confidence some have that we will win another 4 or 5 of our remaining games.
    The other thing is the QPR result did us no favours as we dont want them building up any momentum, and just before we play them.

  • jcv,

    I remember my first Villa game, we lost at home 6-2 to chelsea,so all these years later no change then.
    My first live game was the previous week where, i went down the tip and saw them beat Norwich 2-1,but couldn't stand the tin shack, especially when they start banging on the corrugated iron fencing, but after going down VP the following week i was hooked.
    I wasn't mr. popular as where i lived was predominately a noses area and i got into 1 or 2 arguments and although a few tried to change my mind they had no chance.

  • sorry,

    typing error i did mean to say dec 15th:):)
    whats your forecast for tom?

  • jcv,

    Ha Ha, i think you may be right.
    You're right you are a crap punter, more likely 5-1:):):)

  • goodnight jcv,

    Let's hope we are on here tomorrow night celebrating a win.:D

  • Guest - vancouvervillan

    On a different topic, I went to see Reo Coker make his debut for my local "Vancouver Whitecaps" yesterday against Toronto, (1st game of MLS season), he was not quite match fit, came on at halftime and frankly changed the game with a good performance in midfield, he held the ball well making sure we kept possession and spread the ball about well, contributing to the winning goal, named motm.
    Last time i saw him play was at VP, strange seeing him over here and seeing him make a good impact, good luck to him hope he continues to play well for the Whitecaps. With NRC and Kenny Miller up front they should make the playoffs again this year. MLS over here is getting better all the time, watch out for a talented midfielder named Gershan Koffi , I am sure he will be playing in europe sooner or later.
    Fatty if your reading this 300 pounds a match to scout ? :):):)

  • Guest - vancouvervillan

    Not posted for a while the blog is a little depressing lately, two things to remember lads ...
    1/ We are not down yet !
    2/ Whatever your opinion on manager, owner etc., right now it's time to get behind the team !

    I know it's coming from my heart & not my head, but i fancy us to shock Man C. tomorrow, we have the strike force & are due some luck after the dreadful ref decisions at the ethiad. You never know UTV !

  • In the Mirror this morning.

    "Aston Villa 'bad boy' Charles N'Zogbia matures under Paul Lambert"

    Villa boss welcomes news that £9.5million striker is finally all about business

    'He is best known for his bad-boy reputation – but Aston Villa’s Charles N’Zogbia claims he has finally grown up.

    The £9.5million forward is producing the best form of his Villa career – and it could not have come at a better time as they battle the drop.

    He was the hero with a stunning free-kick winner against West Ham last time out at Villa Park, and Paul Lambert will hope for more magic against Manchester City tonight (Monday).

    As a teenager at Newcastle, Bobby Robson claimed N’Zogbia was as gifted as anyone he had ever seen at that age, but ever since his form has been frustratingly fitful.

    But after failing to see eye-to-eye with Alex McLeish, Lambert is getting the best out of the enigmatic 26-year-old.

    N’Zogbia said: “For me, you can have a gift but if you don’t work on it you can do nothing with it.

    “I am working hard in training every day to try to develop what I am and what I believe in.

    “You have to stay focused and not worry about what people say or think.

    He added: “You have to help the younger players too. When I was young I used to listen to players like Alan Shearer at Newcastle. You have to as they know their football.”

  • Come on "Charlie my boy !!"

    It's Charles Charlie Charles one half of the famous Charles brothers !!

    One of those free kicks you scored the other week will do for me this evening Charlie boy !!!


  • If the Villa that played the first half of the Man U game turns up we can win. City can be got at in a way Man U cant so if we get straight at them from the off then I think we can pull this off.

  • Hope springs eternal.
    Hope it's worth the journey tonight. UTV.

  • Guest - belcs

    Lets not delude ourselves, one of 2 things will happen in tonights game:
    1) We will be thrashed
    2) We will surprisingly take the lead, then sit back and watch City walk all over us.
    The end result is the same- 100% nailed on defeat.
    There is no way that the diabolical defence that lam-berk has assembled will keep out City's attack, it can't even deal with league two players FFS. Another step closer to a humiliating relegation, and more mumbling from lam-berk after the game. Relegation looks like a certainty.

  • If I was PL I'd set the team up for all out attack and try and surprise Mercenary City in the first twenty minutes, it's probably the best way to try and get a win or even a draw. Let's face it if we sit back we'll get rogered left right and centre and if we do manage to get something from this game Villa are out of the bottom three.

    We beat them earlier in the season so it's not an impossibility but tonight's game is very important for both teams, let's hope it goes Villa's way and that mullet head Mercenary City fan is back on here again tomorrow whinging about the highlight of Villa's season.

  • For instance and arguements sake, if Villa are winning 2- 0 with 10 minutes to go this evening, I'd shift Benteke into central defence, take off a midfielder, swap him for Bent and bring Gabby or Weimann into a more central midfield role.

    Anyone remember how Bent chased the ball down in our previous home game, resulting in us scoring two goals.......

    Hey, all hands to the pump when needed, don't care where they play.
    Remember super Dion Dublin in the air he went into defence when called upon ! ;)

  • away win tonight.Nothing to see here move along.

  • Tonight is all about the team on the park, forget Lambert and Lerner thats for any inquest, so come on lads lets get this job done - I would take a draw tonight.

  • to be far I would settle for a one nil win from a scuffed 95th minute shot that deflects of five players hits the post and goes in of the ref at this stage - but I just can't see it happening :-)

  • Guest - vogra

    Cant see anything past an easy win tonight for Man City, Tevez and Augero will rip our centre backs apart.

  • Guest - salty

    John Salter: 'If I was PL I'd set the team up for all out attack and try and surprise Mercenary City in the first twenty minutes, it's probably the best way to try and get a win or even a draw. Let's face it if we sit back we'll get rogered left right and centre '

    Got to agree with you John; if we are going to get anything out of this game we have to score and give City something to chase. We don't have the quality to sit deep for 90 minutes [+6, doubtless], but we can raid, we have some firepower and we must utilise it. I rather think that the critical issue will be the midfield holding together for more than a half, and that is where we could get overrun leaving the back exposed - as has happened so often this year.

  • Surprise surprise.. I see "kamikazee engine room pilot Fabian Delph" is only one booking away from a 2 game ban.

  • Guest - J

    Again I am probably the voice of pessimism here. But, I probably speak for most of us when I say that there is probably no way we will win tonight. A draw would be amazing, but again I have my doubts that it will happen.
    Luckily the results this weekend mean that we kind of play a free hand here, as there is no pressure to recover points on Wigan or Southampton or Reading. I think we might as well put our minds forward to the QPR/Reading fixtures in the next two weeks, because it is in those two games where the future of our season and our club will be decided. Win them both and we actually have a chance of survival, fail to beat them (or even worse lose!) and then it will, in my opinion, take a miracle.

  • Vlaar is struggling with the calf injury and might not make it. Sh*t !

    Bent has been ruled out with a foot injury, it's ok we have Bowery !!

    Shay Given is back on the bench lads "we're saved..... ";);)

  • Citeh are not as consistent as they once where, I think Kompany is unfit and Hart has recently been prone to the odd ricket, I realise they can punish you at the other end but if we can hold them for the first half and then get the 1st goal in the 2nd I think we give ourselves a fighting chance of at least a point. What we must not do is sit back and let them pick us off that would be suicide.

  • Guest - J

    I think they just have too much quality for our "defence" to deal with. What I am hoping for is that we do not get stuffed. Another hideous battering and our confidence could nose-dive ahead of arguably the two most important fixtures in our club's recent history.
    I agree sitting back would be suicide, but we know that they are also good on the break. Against a "defence" like ours that would be even worse. I think just trying to keep the ball in their half but not committing too many forward could be the best option.

  • We have to bring an element of surprise to the game - why not play with 2 out and out wingers instead of going narrow all the time in midfield, get round the back of them, we have the pace and the players, it would make a welcome change.

  • Guest - J

    Would go with one up front in Benteke and Drop N'zogbia behind him into attacking midfield. Play Weimann and Gabby as the two out and out wingers with Westwood and Delph holding infront of the defence. Packing the midfield is necessary, due to Citeh's quality there and because we don't want either front man dropping off and getting space.
    Obviously at the back not playing Bennett is absolutely essential. Apart from that, move Baker to left back and keep the same in Vlaar, Clark and Lowton in front of Guzan. If Vlaar is out then move Baker back into the middle and stick Stevens at left back. Anything but Bennett.

  • (J) Weimann just behind Benteke and N'Zogbia in a natural wide position would be my choice.

  • Guest - J

    (wind) N'zogbia has been doing well in a free role, but I can see your thinking, would probably work either way.

  • Guest - Vital_Loans

    Absolutely, I would love to see us keep Weimann this summer and for him to sign a contract. Benteke, Weimann and Gabby will do me. I want to see us sell Bent for a decent amount of cash (10 to 12m) and buy another 'unknown' striker for 5 to 7m and maybe spend 4m on Lescott :)

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