The Bells Are Ringing


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7 Days of Villa (9)

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7 Days of Villa (9)

Friday, 10th April

As you can imagine, the media is full of Sherwood and Spurs. He has some very nice things to say about them, but to the surprise of no-one, the tabloids were far more insistent on concentrating on anything that could be twisted; scumbags.

Saturday, 11th April

WE WON! It's been ages since we beat Spurs, so this was most welcome. Maybe Sherwood will have the hoodoo over Spurs the same way Lambert did over Norwich? That sure would be nice. (Okay as I typed that, I realise I unintentionally did the 'Sherwood/sure would' pun, but I am not editing it to put it in! I thought I'd note that I had spotted it though  Razz)

We played well and deserved the win. Spurs were awful, make no mistake about it, but we still put in a good performance. Had Gabby managed to squeeze his shot inside the post rather than hitting it, or had Delph managed to not squander a good opportunity, the win could have been more emphatic. I think the most surprising thing about it all was that we wasn't hanging on at the end either, which says more about Spurs than us I guess. However we were very much good value for the win and with results going our way, this afternoon felt like the day we knew we'd probably be safe.

The Carlos Sanchez sending off has split people between 'taking one for the team' and 'being an idiot', but I don't think anyone has pointed out that just before he made the tackle, there were about three blatant fouls on our players in a space of around 15-20 that went unpunished, and there's every chance he was getting very annoyed - I know I was! As we won there can be no accusations of me just having sour grapes, but I have to say that the referee was absolutely terrible. Still, I lean more towards Sanchez being a bit daft.

Elsewhere, the Academy team lost 5-1 to the Albion. The less said about that, the better! Callum O'Hare got our goal.

Sunday, 12th April

Results carry on going our way with Chelsea beating QPR. What a brilliant weekend!

In another 5-1 defeat, the ladies are out of the FA Cup, losing to Notts County. Hopefully the blokes manage to do better on Sunday! Kerri Welsh got the Villa goal.

Monday, 13th April

There's an article doing the rounds where Jorge Jesus (Benfica boss) talks about Tim Sherwood, ferociously criticising his managerial skills but also stating that in the end, he liked Sherwood.

There was one line that caught my eye:

‘you’re taking a hiding and don’t even realise how’

I do fear this a bit with Sherwood. He reminds me of a 2015 version of Martin O'Neill - great motivator, can get the best out of certain players, doesn't like to overcomplicate things, wants his teams to be fearless, likes a big man as part of a front two... but will probably come up short tactically on occasion. Still, if that's my biggest complaint (I certainly hope Sherwood is shrewder in the transfer market than MON was) then compared to the 4 years of McLeish and Lambert, life as a Villa fan will be much, much, much more enjoyable! 
(You may want to remind me of this when I complain about us falling short in our chase for Champions League football under Sherwood for the third season running... )

For anyone that wants to read the article, just click here on this clickable linky thingamajig.

Sticking on the subject of Sherwood, there is an article on the OS about him writing a letter to a six-year old that had applied for the then-vacant managers job. It's wonderful (as was the application by the young boy!) and credit to him and whoever else at the club is responsible for it.

Elsewhere, it appears that Daniel Sturridge is an injury doubt for Sunday. That'd be handy. We certainly have our own injury list to contend with.

Finally, Dion Dublin made his début hosting Homes Under The Hammer. I haven't seen it yet, but I do intend on watching. Apparently it was good. Ya gotta love Dion aintcha!

Tuesday, 14th April

Whilst various players give interviews about the semi-final, it would be remiss of me not to at least post this:


Wednesday, 15th April

It appears we've offered Tom Cleverley a deal, or at least we plan on doing so. Hmm. He's much improved lately, but for the type of money he wants... put it this way, if there is ANY chance that we could get James Milner on a free this summer, it isn't even a contest on who I'd rather have - and if Milner wants first team football, I'm sure being one of the main men in a Villa revolution could be tempting. I daresay he'll end up somewhere else (Liverpool maybe?) but my point is, for the money, we may be able to do better than no goals/no assists Cleverley. Still, he HAS been improved under Sherwood, the quicker pace suits him better and I won't complain if we sign him, I just won't be excited either. Media reports suggest that Spurs, Arsenal and Everton are after him. Everton I can believe, the other two though, I just can't see it.

Thursday, 16th April

Christian Benteke gives an interview discussing how he is happy at the moment, and while he doesn't say he's staying, he certainly doesn't rule it out either.

When Benteke wasn't playing well, the absolute garbage I saw from some of our fans on social networks and message boards was infuriating, and I vehemently defended him all the way through it. There were two very obvious factors:

1) Pre-season is massive for players. It is MASSIVE. So when a player does not have one, especially on the back of a bad injury, it affects them for longer than many fans realise. I've seen it happen to a fair few player at various clubs over the years, and it was of no surprise to me when it happened to Benteke;
2) The style of play was so obviously not suited to Benteke - which is why I could be wrong but I don't see him ending up at somewhere like Arsenal or Liverpool - and now we are playing to his strengths, we are seeing the best of him. Hardly complicated, is it?

I really hope he stays, but I'm not holding my breath. However, it is much more likely now with Lambert gone, and with the possibility of a takeover looming, who knows? With two years on his deal it's easier to fend off potential suitors this summer, and if we could get him to sign a new deal, I feel like that would be the best signing we could make this summer. As I say, I don't expect it, but I'm more hopeful than I was.

Scarf Waving Scarf Waving Scarf Waving Anyway... to Wembley! Scarf Waving Scarf Waving Scarf Waving

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