Even if we win tonight and in football anything is possible, I'm not so sure the views on Paul Lambert are going to change and this is just me predicting the reason why, but if we do win tonight, I suspect it will be through luck and Southampton having a bad day at the office.
And even if that didn't happen and we ended up having 65% possession, thirty shots and won five-nil, I'm not so sure it will be enough for him anymore. I think he's gone past the point where supporters can accept him as the manager. And even if we did win, through luck or dominance, it will be when we next lose the next match and he uses the 'we go again' line that will drive people mad.
There comes a time as manager when whatever is said will just wind people up the wrong way and when Lambert Bingo is a search term used on Google to find this website, you know it's gone a little too far.
And if we win or dare I say it, get a point, the manager will hail it as a big result tonight, much like he hailed the West Ham game as one. The reason is that Southampton are second in the table and they're doing it with their third manager since the start of last season. It's proof that it's not just about the manager, but the philosophy and culture of a club and also proof that Lambert is a little out of his depth.
But and this is where it gets a little strange, it will be nice to watch Southampton tonight. I've seen a couple of games this season and the football has surprised me, not necessarily because it was that good, but because it seemed to be very disciplined more than anything and I think, that is what Lambert has tried to do during his time at Aston Villa.
However Mark Lawrenson thinks we can get something tonight, which is sort of irrelevant because he gets it wrong just as often as he gets it right, but it's him suggesting there is a chance. I mean, we all know there is a chance, but on what basis is he suggesting it other than the opportunity to look smug after? I find it hard to suggest we can win based on anything other than blind optimism, so what could Lawrenson be basing it on.
Tom Fox and blind optimism
Let me make this clear, it's just a title to a section of the post. The two things above are not to be associated with one another. One is because there is a message for the new CEO and the other is my updates section. So first, the message.
Everyone remembers the video interview with Tom Fox, so the reason I'm mentioning the CEO here is because on the basis of that video, I'd like him to prove it. And I'm writing this the day of a match. If he really wants to see European football at Villa Park, if he really wants to see us climb the table and play the right type of football, I'd like him to prove it.
Football isn't just about revenue streams, it's sometimes about making decisions that you don't want to make. We're one place above the relegation zone after more than a quarter of the season. Sometimes, the decision you have to make is the one you don't want to and sometimes, you have to do the things you don't want to.
The blind optimism part was about the football. We're all entitled to believe for a few hours that we can win and starting about now, we can even convince ourselves that it doesn't matter how. Team news and all that coming as it comes in and in case you didn't know, the head of media at the club has resigned. He's joining Everton. I also suspect they'll be more people going, now that the CEO is getting his feet under the table.
And before I go, the competition winner will be announced just before kick off. Have fun.