It isn't that bad at Aston Villa and Kevin MacDonald did a fine job with the time he had

Yesterday was just one of those days and honestly, I'm not really that bothered. Last season we were sixth after five games with a manager that had his players in place, playing his brand of football. To be eighth now, with a manager that had five days to prepare, I'm actually quite happy.

Yes, we started well and yes Luke Young saved us and yes Webcam, it turns out, just got lucky with the free kick and still needs to work on his dead ball game, but we also have positive things that are not so obvious from yesterday.


We are trying to pass the ball instead of hit it long and we are also creating space and trying to help the ball move up the pitch without a punt. These are just little things but they are fundamental and given the time MacDonald has had, I think he has done a fantastic job.

Also, any new manager that comes in is going to need time and not just a few games, so some of you that are writing that Kevin MacDonald isn't good enough are wrong. You are wrong because it is impossible to judge a manager based on five games.

In fact, had he come in and won four and drawn one, I'd be more worried - I'd put that down to new manager syndrome and that will soon wear off.

What MacDonald did was focus on the basics and he did good. We will never know now what could have happened with him because the club decided to bring in an outsider on the verge of getting his bus pass instead of giving the job to someone that knows the club inside out, is well respected by the players and has a reason to put in that extra 5%.

Bottom line, to say he isn't up to the job or not good enough for this level is madness because you can not determine that so quickly. You might have one day turned out to be right, but to start writing that after five games he isn't up for it or good enough at this level just goes to suggest you don't really understand football.

If you did, you'd know he needed a lot longer and actually, for someone that isn't good enough at this level, to have twelve other teams behind him in the league, including all our local rivals, it just goes to show how wrong you could be.

Statistics

I have spent a lot of time on some statistics this morning but I've decided to scrap them again. I didn't start with the statistics with O'Neill until his second season so I think it is unfair to list statistics for a team that had a manager for so few games.

What I will say is that we have all the statistics from last season and we are going to give the new manager until the new year and then we will start comparing to last season, just for fun, but to really know, we just have to use our eyes.

Kevin MacDonald

So, thank you Mr MacDonald. It feels a little like you were not shown the respect you deserved when you announced your intention for the job and it turns out now that Houllier was as good as in the job when the club released that bit of PR, so if you do leave to find a new club, I don't think anyone would blame you or be surprised, it appears you have the bug.

But you will now go down in the history books of Aston Villa and will be missed in three to five years time, which is ironic really, because that is something that possibly wouldn't have happened had you gotten the job.

Sunday speculation

There isn't any. Not one bit of juice anywhere. I suspect our new manager and back room team are at Bodymoor this morning though and they are hatching a master-plan to get us into the top four next season.

With Houllier it could happen and he might not need the funds the previous manager would have needed - we will learn that this season and I think next could be a very interesting one.