Chance of a spanking, it could be worse, the following three games and match facts from the BBC

We are playing the side that is likely to win the league today with a striker that has scored three in his last two games and some are even putting money on him doing it again today. But is this a big game or just something we have to take on the chin and move quickly on to Leicester, Southampton and Leeds and hope we pick up some points so that manager can save his job?

And that I'm writing this so few games into the season doesn't feel great. That said, we should survive this season in the Premier League and I'll come to why in a minute. But it could be worse. Imagine growing up a Birmingham City fan.

And we should stay up because one of two things are going to happen in those three matches after Manchester City today. The first thing and I suspect we all want this is that it clicks for Steven Gerrard. The second thing will be if it doesn't and the owners will get rid of him and the CEO. And if I was Nassef Sawiris or Wes Edens I'd already have a shortlist of who the next CEO could be, if things don't turn around in those matches.

And when I look at our squad and the time available to Steven Gerrard or the new manager, I'm veery confident that we have a group of players that should be in the top half of the league. And that's why I'm confident we're not going down.

But all that is in the near future, not for today. Today is like I wrote above, taking it on the chin because it could be a spanking.

Match facts from the BBC


  • Aston Villa are winless in their last 11 top-flight meetings with Manchester City (D1, L10), losing each of the last seven by an aggregate score of 22-5.
  • City have won 14 of their last 16 league games against Villa (D1, L1) - their only defeat in this run was a 3-2 loss at Villa Park in September 2013.
  • The champions have won 28 Premier League games against the Villans - against no side do they have a better record.

Aston Villa

  • Defeat would see Villa lost five of their opening six top-flight matches for the first time since 1986-87, a season which saw them finish bottom.
  • They have lost 13 Premier League games in 2022, a tally exceeded only by Everton's 15 defeats.
  • Since March they have won just three of their 16 league games (D3, L10).
  • Villa have lost half of their 32 top-flight fixtures under Steven Gerrard (W11, D5).
  • The Villans have lost 15 of their last 16 Premier League games against the reigning champions, with the exception the 7-2 victory over Liverpool in October 2020.
  • Ollie Watkins has scored five goals in four top-flight appearances versus the reigning champions.
  • Philippe Coutinho has netted in five of his seven league games against Manchester City.

Manchester City

  • Manchester City's haul of 19 goals is their highest after five games of a league season.
  • They are vying to score multiple goals in a 15th successive Premier League fixture, which would equal the record set by Liverpool in 2019.
  • City are unbeaten in 20 Premier League away games (W15, D5) - there have only been four instances of longer such runs in the competition.
  • Erling Haaland has scored nine goals in five Premier League appearances. The player to have reached 10 Premier League goals in the fewest appearances is Mick Quinn, who did so in six games for Coventry in 1992.

The manager