The best part about this week is Pep quitting because he had Jack forced on him and the two players he wanted, the club couldn't get. That and watching some of our younger players demonstrate why the future for Aston Villa is very bright.
And if I had to pick one, it would be the League Cup victory, there was something about the energy the other night that made you think they could be very close to taking the step up to the first team. I mean, they are there and they made an impression. What more do they have to do?
But that is done, we must turn our attention to today and we really do need to win this match. Not because it's Brentford and we should have more than them, this is the Premier League and every side can win every game and I for one think the Brentford model is one that other clubs should be following to get here.
No, the reason why we really need to win this is because we need six points by the end of this month. Or what I really mean is that if we are going to stand the best chance possible this season, we have to win two games out of the opening three. I honestly thought we'd win all three, so winning today is important.
And like I suggested above, Brentford are not going to be a walk in the park. And this is a demonstration of why every match is so important and why we have to approach every match with a plan. Everything we do all season is about the 38 90 minutes. We have to go into every game wanting a win and going out there for it.
We need to see this from kick off today, like we all know we need to see it. And it's must win because every single game should be seen as as important as every other. It's not too early to be saying this. The more I think about it, the more I buy into it.
Match facts from the BBC
- Aston Villa are unbeaten in all six of their previous top-flight matches against Brentford (W5, D1), the last of which was a 2-0 win in London in February 1947.
- The Bees have failed to win all seven of their league and cup games away to Villa (D5, L2), drawing their last four matches at Villa Park.
- The Londoners have not lost any of the six most recent meetings (D3, D3), all of which came in the Championship between 2016 and 2019.
- Aston Villa have netted two goals in each of their last five league games.
- If they extend that run to six top-flight matches it will be their longest such streak since scoring at least twice in seven consecutive matches in October and November 1980.
- Villa are the only side to have scored with all their shots on target in this season's Premier League, finding the net with all four efforts on goal.
- Dean Smith's side could become the first team to be awarded a penalty in four consecutive Premier League matches since Arsenal in 2007.
- Emiliano Martinez has kept a clean sheet in 40% of his Premier League appearances for the Villans (16/40), the best rate of any keeper with more than 10 starts for the club in the competition.
- Brentford are vying to become the third newly promoted side to keep clean sheets in their opening three Premier League games, following in the footsteps of Charlton in 1998-99 and Huddersfield in 2017-18.
- Including play-off matches, they are unbeaten in 14 league matches (W7, D7), keeping a clean sheet in eight of the last 10.
- Their most recent top-flight away goal was scored by Len Townsend in a 2-1 defeat at Sunderland on 24 May 1947.
- The Bees' last away win in the top flight was a 2-1 victory at Leeds on 5 April 1947.