Aston Villa at Anfield: Updates, team news and the new Randy Lerner

Finally, proper football is back. And it's a big day of football leading up to the game of the day. You all know Anfield, as it's been good for us the past few seasons.

That doesn't mean it's going to be good for us today or easy. Anfield is a hard place to go and they know how to support their side. But that support can help us and I've got a feeling we'll be up for it today.

And I know I've written about this before but September and October are important months for Paul Lambert. After Liverpool today, we've got Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Everton. And with these matches coming up, we need to be up for it. The most telling match could be the last match in October though and that's away at QPR.

That's a possible 18 points between now and the end of October but under Paul Lambert the previous two seasons, we've averaged a point a game and if we get that from the next six, I'm not convinced it's going to be enough for the manager.

That's not me saying he'll get the sack, it's me saying that if after nine games we've averaged 1.4 points a game this season, it's only going to highlight that he can't do it at this level.

That will either mean Roy Keane gets the job or we accept more mediocrity. I don't think Tom Fox or even the new Randy Lerner are going to be happy accepting more mediocrity and that's why QPR as the last game of the season could be the most important for Lambert.

Hope breeds eternal misery

And as the poem goes, if I hope I get hurt, so there is no hope. But it's the only thing we have as supporters right now. We have to hope. But this manager is one defeat away from getting quite a bit of stick, even if the team go out and play football the right way.

Which is why I go into this game optimistically, because we have nothing but hope to hang on to and I quite fancy that things ave changed and I quite think that the new Aston Villa under the guidance of the new Randy Lerner and the new Tom Fox, is something else.

So today is important. Not the most important, but if we win it will set us up for the next games. If we don't, it could all start to go horribly wrong. But if we do lose, we'll pick ourselves up and go again.

Updates and team news

So, this is it. It doesn't all come down to this match, but this match is so important and the thing is, we know it's possible, as long as we play football the right way and don't revert to trying not to lose. Me, I'm going in with hope and I'm hoping that I don't get hurt.