Christmas is around the corner and Aston Villa have 6 games left to play in the 42 days left before Santa arrives. Yes, we need to keep the focus and not get too carried away with our current league position, but we are only human. No matter how much we say we are happy just to stay away from a relegation scrap, we all still dream and fantasize. It is like if we were to meet Karen Brady at some sort of event. We all know there is no chance, but we would all be thinking the same thing!
So, in the spirit of Christmas, this post is about speculation and anticipation. It is about living the fantasy between now and Christmas and wondering where villa will be when JCV is making his lumpy gravy to pour over the Turkey and Ham. We have six games to go: Brighton (h), West Ham (a), Newcastle (h), Wolves (a), Burnley (h) and Baggies (a).
Aston Villa v Brighton
It’s a pity we have the international break now as I would love to see Villa continue on from our dismantling of Arsenal. Brighton are currently 16th with 6 points. They have only 1 win, 3 draws and 4 losses. They haven’t had a win in 7 games and will be starting to feel some relegation pressure. To me this has home win written all over it moving Villa to 18 points. Looking at the kick-off times I think this will put us into 3rd in the league by 5pm on Sat 21st Nov. 3 points Villa
West Ham v Aston Villa
This is a very tough fixture. West Ham had some excellent results this season when Moyes was in self isolation and have since drawn with City and Spurs, albeit the Spurs draw was somewhat fortunate as they were 3-0 down with about 10 mins to play. They have an ace up their sleeve too as Karen may make an appearance and distract our players from concentrating on the game. However, we are on a run of form and proved a few months ago that we can visit West ham while under severe pressure to get a result and come away smiling. I would probably take a draw now, but a win is not out of the question. 1 point Villa
Aston Villa v Newcastle
Last season Newcastle came to Villa Park and rolled over and let us tickle their tummies. Bruce has a habit of doing this when he thinks a point would be a good result, so I expect a similar type of game. Toon will park the bus and leave it up to Villa to try and make the breakthrough. This is a big test for Smith as it is a scenario that he has handled poorly in the past e.g. opening game against 10-man Sheffield. We will need to approach this game the way we approached the Liverpool and Arsenal games and not like we played against Leicester. A positive attacking performance by the lads and we will comfortably close of the day with 3 more points moving us on to 22 points from 10 games. 3 points Villa
This is the most difficult fixture of the six. Wolves are a very good team and they have speed and ability to really test our fullbacks. I think Smith will go to Wolves and would be delighted to leave with a draw and this could be our undoing. I expect Villa fans to be disappointed following this game as we will leave with no points and having conceded 2 or 3 goals. This game could also highlight our lack of quality coming off the bench as we will just not have the players available to come on change a game. 0 points Villa.
Aston Villa v Burnley (h)
This will be a reasonably difficult game to get the 3 points from but a game we simply will not lose. Burnley can’t score goals and are in a relegation battle. Leaving Villa Park with a point would be an excellent result for Dyche’s side. Burnley are setup to play defensive football and they will certainly do so in this game. Following the loss to Wolves, Smith and the lads will be out to prove the doubters wrong and we will win this game 2-0. Emi Martinez will keep a clean sheet with Burnley not registering a single shot on his goal. We will now have 25 points and will be firmly in the top 4, still with a game in hand. 3 points Villa
Baggies v Villa
The weekend of Saturday Dec 19th is the last game week before Santa arrives and what a lovely pre-Christmas present to receive. Our local rivals will be deep in relegation trouble and no doubt will still be looking for their first win. This will be a bit of a thrashing. 4-0 or 5-0 to the Villa to root the Baggies to the bottom of the table for the Christmas period. It will also push Villa up to 28 points from 13 games. As this is a speculation thread, that amount of points is very much Champions League qualification and also will have Villa pushing for the league title. 3 points Villa
If we get a bit of luck along the way, we could beat Wolves and will be sitting top of the league when we sit down to enjoy our Christmas dinner and even JCV’s wife won’t be complaining about the lumpy gravy. The sensible thing to do now is to lump as much cash as you can liquidate on Villa to finish top 4. You can still get 20/1 with a few Bookies. You can still get 150/1 with some bookies for us to win the Premier League so it would probably be wise to lump a few quid on this too. You never know, with us top of the league starting Jan we may get a few marquee signings in the Jan window to help push us to our first league title since 1981.
Enjoy The International Break Folks
Anyway, enjoy the international break folks, at least I will have some little amount of interest in watching England v Ireland. But I am looking forward to getting back to league football and seeing Aston Villa continue our push to the promised land. We may all be eating humble pie instead of Turkey & ham as Dr Tony Xia’s 5 year plan comes to fruition.