Match Preview: Aston Villa travel to Birmingham City

Before I get into this, I've got to say, I think we will win, mostly because we have a much better squad of players and better manager. I have to say that, because you are going to think I've gone soft in about three minutes.

You see, I think it is better to have Birmingham City in the league than not have them and so what if they win? Have you also noticed that I'm referring to them as Birmingham City and there is going to be no mention of clowns or the circus today. I'm bigger than that and they deserve as much respect as the next team, as they've done the work and deserve to be playing in the Premier League.


I guess what I'm getting at is, it's only one match and while the last time we met was a very memorable day, it was soon forgotten, mostly because we all expected to win and we sort of all expected them to get relegated because well, that is what they are all about. It also isn't as easy to get up for this match as it used to be, because well, we all sort of accept that we will likely win and we've done it so many times before.

What I'm getting at is it would mean so much more to them if they won and it might, for a few hours, even things up a little bit for some of their supporters. It's a bit like you are at the fairground and you've done this particular ride to death and actually you're a bit bored of it, but you still want one last go before the fairground closes, because it is fun and you know you'll enjoy it.

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So you line up with everyone else and after spending twenty minutes listening to the kid and his father behind you talk about getting on the ride for the first time and remembering how you felt that excited the first time you went on the ride, you get to the gate and there is only one seat left and the fairground is closing and moving on.

I know what I'd do, I'd give my place to the kid, knowing how excited he was and knowing that it will make his night and he'd be able to tell all his friends at the special school the next day how he got on and how it felt. I'd do it, because I'm bigger than that and well, it would be my moment too, sort of.

Right, back to reality. What I'm saying is, it's only a game and while I know it's important that we win, if for nothing else but another three points and bragging rights, in the grand scheme of things, it is only a game and well, we will lose some games we are expected to win and we might even win some we are expected to lose this season, it's going to be fairly unpredictable if sort of predictable at the same time.

What is sort of predictable however is that Birmingham City will be relegated this season or the next and one day, maybe not the next time they go down, but certainly sooner rather than later, they'll drop another division and fade away into nothing again, before maybe coming back in twenty years.

Much like their supporters, the whole club has no backbone, no history and basically, they don't know how to win. After a few seasons of this, when the penny finally drops, their supporters will give up on the club, stop believing and when that starts to happen and I fancy it has, it is all downhill for them.

For supporters of Birmingham City, the biggest thing they might be able to tell their grandchildren in forty or fifty years time is that they were there when they beat Aston Villa. I'll be telling my grandchildren about how we won the European Cup.

So, not the usual prediction or statistics as it sort of doesn't matter. This is a special day for this lot and well, you know I think we will win because we are just bigger and better but even if we don't, it is only one match that would probably mean so much more to them than it ever will to us.

Back on Sunday but in case you were in the area and didn't mind sitting with them, they've still got tickets available that they're now selling for £15 just so they don't have empty seats, so hurry on down to the farm.