Aston Villa at Sunderland: Updates, team news and all the ingredients for a spanking

I think maybe it's because we're Aston Villa, but optimism has levelled out quite quickly and even though I think we can win today, I'm not so sure we will. But I am really looking forward to today.

I also wrote recently about how if we lost a game and the teams below us all won how we'd be bottom so I think it only fair to also write that if we win today, we could move level on points with Everton who are 14th.

And maybe the optimism is still there, I'm not so sure. I've distanced myself from things that can produce optimism only because now isn't the time to start believing we are safe.

But it's Saturday and we're playing Sunderland and it's one of those matches that we can win. I've heard Sunderland fans on the radio and they are worse than West Brom fans on one side of the scale and worse than Liverpool fans on the other. And the football they are playing really is poor. To top it all off, they've got a manager that knows he doesn't have long left but sadly an owner that doesn't know much about football.

But it doesn't have to be a spanking

But up until now he hasn't been afraid to fire someone, but for some reason he is sticking with Poyet for the moment and this could be good for us because not only have I heard Sunderland fans on the radio, I've seen a few of their matches and the football is dire. If there was ever a side that we should be able to spank, it's Sunderland. It was a Paul Lambert side.

Look, this isn't me saying we should be spanking Sunderland, after all we've likely still got some fragile egos at our club, but if we are going to get a little bit better than the 2-0 and we're playing a side that really is dire, then you never know. It sort of makes sense. But I'd be more than happy with a cheeky last minute penalty to make it 1-0 to us and we leave with the three points.

Because after today, if we win, there will be three worse sides than us in the league and I'll feel a lot more confident.

Updates and team news

All the updates coming as they happen. I've got things to be dong this morning but I'll be back a couple of hours before kick off and I think we might have a competition later, just waiting on an email.