Villa Blog

Aston Villa Brush Aside Arsenal With Ease

What do Aston Villa need to do after crushing Arsenal

Last night Aston Villa crushed Arsenal to move to 6th in the Premier League. To me, this was the best Villa performance in many years, even better that the 7-2 mauling of Liverpool. There was not one Arsenal player that would win their place in the Villa team on last night’s performance. We are now 12 points clear of the bottom 3 and I am confident that worrying about relegation this season is not something Villa fans will need to do. We can leave that to The Baggies, Fulham, Sheffield Utd and a few others. 

So where do we go from here?

My goal this season was to avoid a relegation scrap. I believe that Smith has delivered this. Yes, we need to continue and win another 5 games from the remaining 29 games to be more or less sure of this. But, should we be now reassessing our expectations for this season or should we be content with what we have accomplished. We need to keep our feet on the ground and not get carried away with dreaming about European football, but we also need to set targets for Smith and the team.

Working on the squad

I would like to see Smith work on the squad this season and build a squad capable of a European push next season. We have our starting 11 just about nailed down. The only position open for change is wide right with Trez and Traore battling it out. Trez is doing a fantastic job at making this his and Traore has yet to get a chance to prove himself. But we need to plan for injuries and suspensions. Smith needs to be able to introduce substitutes earlier and he needs to be able to have more competition for the starting 11. 

Integrating players

The likes of Ramsey should be getting more game time, particularly when we are 3-0 up with 10 mins left to play. Guilbert should be able to give Cash a rest for the last 15 mins and we need to be able to take Jack off and feel comfortable with his replacement. Luiz too, he is proving to be an outstanding purchase, but we have Nakamba and Hourihane that can come on and give him a break. Smith needs to show his skills at managing a squad and he needs these players to be integrated into the team properly and not just as bench warmers that don’t get to kick a ball in anger.

Dean Smith

Last season I was firmly behind keeping Smith as manager. My logic was it was a new team and the players and Smith and little or no experience in the PL and I believed that a season working together would benefit them all. This season is different. Smith needs to keep pushing Aston Villa forward and I think developing the squad will be his most important task. If Smith manages to accomplish this then I am happy to see him remain as our manager. If not, I think there will be questioned asked and maybe we should replace him before we are forced to replace him. I am not suggesting replacing him now. That would be crazy as he is doing an excellent job. But as the season develops, we need to keep the pressure on and keep looking to see how we can improve.

Jan transfer window

Bar having to replace an injured player I think Jan will be an interesting window and should be more about planning for next season rather than trying to influence the latter stages of this season. Three new players are required for next season. We need to upgrade El Ghazi, backup for Targett, replacement for ElMo and a replacement for or preferably the purchase of Ross Barkley. Some activity with these positions would be very welcome to give the new player(s) a bedding in period before next summer.

Wesley

Wes is the forgotten man at Villa. He will be like a new signing when he come back from injury and hopefully, he will rise to the occasion and justify his 22m price tag. I am hoping that he will be joining a squad which is high on confidence which may just be the perfect environment for him to thrive and put pressure on Watkins for the starting role.

The future is bright, it is fun being an Aston Villa fan. It is fun watching our games and it is fun watching Match of The Day. 

UTV

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Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago

Make Scotland great again, stop the count ! 😆😆😆😆😆

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Must be strange wanting Jack & Mings to do well, but probably Ireland to win 😁

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Are you watching live ?, bbc text saying Jack all over wembley running the show & Mings doing a Messi on the edge of Irelands box.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Thats what he needs bit if freedom to conjure.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

Muz1
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Muz1
20 days ago

Grealish and Mings both start.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Muz1

Yes, about time.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago

Looking forward to seeing our lads start, 6.30 pm until I get to see it, on cable though.

HenleyVillain
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HenleyVillain
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

I think your friend is right. We could be top 4. Only caveat, and it’s a big one, is injuries. We clearly do not have enough cover, in most positions. The year we last won the league Saunders was lucky to have a fit squad and very few injuries. Can’t see us being so fortunate now but you never know.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Still think its very early to be talking top 4, none of the above players looked top half against Leeds or Southampton.
Work in progress, we do need to add some depth in January & of course Barkley not ours.

Muz1
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Muz1
20 days ago

Yes, way too early. We are in a good place right now, but I think some are letting their imagination run away with them.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Muz1

TBH, We’ve looked like champions against some very good teams, but Leeds & Southampton struggled so although very exciting not quite ready to be dreaming of Europe just yet. We also have a real issue with the depth of the squad. Replacing the players Begley named will be a good start.
I saw we are looking at the young 19 yr old Porto winger (plays in their B team), a sign we are looking ahead to strengthen the squad.
Still think Traore has no where near the work rate required for the PL and could end up being a poor signing, we’ll see.

Muz1
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Muz1
20 days ago
Reply to  Begley

” Jack could play for any team in the world ”
Southgate may disagree with you on that one.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
20 days ago
Reply to  Muz1

Lol
I always said forget about Southgate and just play your game and I think Jack’s done exactly that.

Not sure why Southgate has changed to this 343 formation to start with, the 2 defensive midfielders is really negative, especially against mediocre teams like the Danes.
There was nothing wrong with the original 433.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
21 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Think Kalanic will almost certainly go, he was just insurance whilst Heaton recovered. In Martinez, Heaton & Steer we have as good a line up of GK options as anyone. Alyson at Liverpool being the possible exception.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
22 days ago

3 players in Shearer’s team of the week. Jack, Watkins & Luiz.

I thought we had the best keeper in years when we signed Heaton, he is a very good keeper, but Martinez has been brilliant both on the pitch with distribution ive never seen before and off in his class comments, real nice guy too. Like many I’m trying to temper my expectations but he thinks he’s going to get us into Europe 😁

Last edited 22 days ago by Vancouvervillan
Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago

Heaton not really very brave,never commanded his box,

HenleyVillain
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HenleyVillain
22 days ago

Feeling great about being a Villa fan again. The game against Arsenal was just something else and the £60 spent on ppv was worth the money just for that one match. Someone asked me who was man of the match afterwards and I couldn’t name one, that’s how well they all played. Just have to hope the international break doesn’t upset our rhythm this time around.

Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago
Reply to  HenleyVillain

Konsa since lock down has been immense,yet never a mention of cap, Maguire isn’t fit to lace his boots,seems beaky has bad memories from his villa days

HenleyVillain
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HenleyVillain
22 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Not while Southgate is in charge he won’t.

Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago
Reply to  HenleyVillain

Absolute clown old beaky,

HenleyVillain
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HenleyVillain
22 days ago
Reply to  Bigfatron

The sooner the powers at the FA realise just what a fraud the man is, the sooner players like Konsa will get recognised. England need a forward thinking manager, not someone who only ever plays his favourites.

HenleyVillain
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HenleyVillain
22 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Three of the best worked goals I’ve seen in a long time (from us that is)

Last edited 22 days ago by HenleyVillain
Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
22 days ago
Reply to  Begley

I think you’re forgetting the Scottish Cafu 🤣🤣🤣

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
22 days ago

Think Hutton was briefly taken over by aliens 😉

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
21 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Thats magic ! …
Disappearing from FB position 😉

Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago

Just briefly ,I thought it was every game ,never seen a fullback go missing as much

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
21 days ago
Reply to  Bigfatron

🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

jcv
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jcv
23 days ago

very good leader post Begley mate.
i think we will just have to take each game on its own merits.
the league is crazy at the moment with so many unusual results.
in saying that,what a roller coaster ride it has been for us so far.with the positives outdoing the negatives.

now i thought that the leicester result was our best performance his season,even better than the liverpool win,and thats saying something LOL.
but the arsenal result was even far better than that.it was the best all round team performance i have seen since god knows when.

and i cant wait for our next game.
CMON YOU LIONS

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
23 days ago

Nice post Begley agree with most of that.

I do think we need another strong DM, Luiz could be off this summer and regardless I think we need another capable DM as cover for SJM & Luiz. Barkley is capable of playing deeper but I think is most effective playing further forward. I also see Ramsey more of a forward MF’r.

I must admit I was worried yesterday for our tactics & organization when I saw McGinn driving into the box for his disallowed goal, hardly part of a DM role in a 4231 but I do accept its much more fluid than that, however, it did raise some tactical doubts for me. Smith had hinted earlier players weren’t following orders in the two losses.

The use of subs I’m putting down to the int. break coming up meaning no need to rest anyone, but I would much rather have seen Davies on for Watkins & Guilbert or Ramsey on for a more professional slow down of the game, ekking out the time. A chance to show players on the bench they are part of the team & squad.
Not the first time we’ve not used subs & as we were at 3-0 another slight concern.

It’s exciting doing better than we imagined right now but I still think it’s a little early to be talking about Europe, the last two losses I think taught us that, we are still very much work in progress. Tactically possibly still a little naive for sure something I hope improves.

For now I’m sticking with a top half finish as a sign of some real progress, but hell beating any top six club away with such a thrilling performance is sure great to watch and enjoy 😄
UTV !

Last edited 23 days ago by Vancouvervillan
Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago

That’s no good everyone liking begley ,the realist in you wouldn’t like it

Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Daily star have a great liking for Karen’s daughter,would at least once a week they show her

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
21 days ago
Reply to  Bigfatron

Pics please 🥸

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
22 days ago
Reply to  Bigfatron

Easy for everyone to agree when we’re winning 😆
Long may it continue.
The realist made it pretty clear he has no respect for anyone posting on here. No loss.

Bigfatron
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Bigfatron
22 days ago

His last hope the man from uncle has left him too

Muz1
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Muz1
23 days ago

We have had a much better start than anyone could have expected, having said that we cannot rest on our laurels. We now have a platform to build from and we do need to strengthen the squad.
I agree it would be nice to see a couple of young lads on the bench and given a run out when we have got a game in the bag. It would be silly to risk unnecessary injury to our star players when we are cruising a game with 15 minutes left, and, could give one or two some big game experience.
Expectations will be going through the roof, but we have to remember where we were less than 2 seasons ago, a little bit of perspective will be needed when we invariably have a few lows this season.
Not being involved in a relegation battle was what I was looking for this season, anything else will be a welcome bonus.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
23 days ago
Reply to  Begley

Was about to say the same, I noticed yesterday during a break for treatment, that for the first time i saw Shakespeare on the touch line talking to McGinn and a few whilst Smith talked to Jack & Watkins.
An excellent sign.

Vancouvervillan
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Vancouvervillan
23 days ago
Reply to  Muz1

Here, here
Smith out ! 😆😆😆

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