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[Archived] Villa 1 - 0 Rovers


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Well that’s Christmas over, roll on 2005. With the horrible 2004 that Rovers have had, maybe with the new manager and management team (plus the introduction of a few new faces) will 2005 be better?

I cant really be bothered writing a long Preview, other than the fact that Villa’s squad are down to the bare bones with injuries and suspensions biting quite hard.

After a decent start to the season O’Leary’s team has started to slip recently with the defeat against Birmingham City being a right kick in the knackers as the blue half of brum gets bragging rights again.

The Ewood fixture was an entertaining 2-2 draw with Rovers leading at one point only to allow Villa back in towards the end.

Last season Rovers lost 2-0 at Ewood in an abysmal game and then won the corresponding fixture 2-0 with goals from Garry Zidane Flitcroft and John Stead. Great day.

Villa and Rovers have also been playing each other regularly in the youth cups with Villas youngsters beating us last season.

Best place for drinking is Graduate, right by Witton Station – trains every ten minutes from New St. See you there

Right waffle over, i had some help and replies from a number of sites who kindly agreed to answer some questions.

Villa vs Blackburn New Years Day

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1) How much was expected of Villa following a relatively quite summer? Has it lived up to expectations?

Denis_B from Holtenders.com

Evening Whippet walker! Happy New Year to you too, after 1.1.05

We expected our chairman to be a prat and he lived up to that expectation. A midtable to to 7th finish.

villa_moose

We expected nowt, which is exactly what we've got.

Dale from ASTONishedVilla.co.uk

Umm always a slopw start to the season, I expected this season and IMHO so far so good, the last half of the season is I feel key to Aston Villa.

2) Are you glad that David O’Leary has now signed a new contract, or do you still hanker for the “glory” days of John Gregory?

JG did ok but more potential from O'Leary..... given the backing at boardroom level, so see 1).

We never won anything under John Gregory so to refer to them as glory days is inaccurate. We averaged sixth under him which at a club like ours is the minimum requirement. DO'L has the potential to be the best manager we've had since Ron Saunders.

Although I liked JG I feel DOL is at least as good and has less resources at his fingertips, I would love to have the days of Gregory back but with our current squad I simply doubt this is possible.

3)What are your thoughts on Rovers so far this season?

Very poor season and need a rebuild if Hughes is backed.

You're irrelevant to us, just as i'm sure we are to you. Would have expected better results though.

Awful, thus far, good luck for the rest of the season, I hope you get Savage, as although he is a pratt, he is key to Blues and they would crumble without him, I feel he could help your revival.

4)Newcastle offered their job to Souness, he buggered off, and now Rovers have Hughes. Do you think we'll be better or worse under Hughes?

Too early to say but Souness appreared past his sell by with t'rovers.

Better by far. Souness is a gimp, he proving that at NUFC

Only time will tell, some fans were happy to have Taylor back here (I wasn't one of them) and he didn't work out, all the best to Sparky though.

5)We've got Enkleman as our Reserve Keeper, what kind of a reception will he get from the Villa Fans?

He didn't ask to go. He isn't a bad keeper so don't expect too much grief.

He was a decent keeper and will probably get a good reception.

Nothing sour from me a great guy not the greatest Keeper but genuine 100% player, I expect no less from the rest of the crowd. We did it for Crouch.

6) More importantly what is it, that happens to your keepers in Birmingham Derbies?

Good question. If you get the answer let O'Leary know.

No Comment

Spiked drinks? I honestly DO NOT know, this is painful for me.

7) Who have been your best and worst players this year?

Best - probably Ulises De la Cruz and worst.... Barry.

Best is a toss up between Ulises De La Cruz and in the few games he's played, Steven Davis. Worst is a harsh term, but Angels performances have been dissapointing for a player of his quality.

Best: McCann, Steven Davis, Lee Hendrie, Solano

Worst: Carlton Cole & Carlton Cole.

8) Any hot prospects coming up through your academy?

Several from rcent teams come through. Cahill on loan at Burnley, Cooke loaned to Wycombe Davis just made the first team as has Ridgewell, Luke Moore and Whittingham recently.

Our best young players play in our reserve and first team sides due to our small squad. Luke Moore and Steven Davis seem best of the bunch.

Steven Davis (definatly), Luke Moore (I hope). (those two have came) Cahill (defender, on loan at Burnley their fans are raving about him) Agbonlahor (really, that is a name, record goal scorer at U18/19 level) Shane Paul (heard good vibes)

Then their is Rodgewell, who is good. We have a good acadamy

9) Who do you want (realistically) to sign in January? What positions do you need to strenghen?

Need a leftback as cover, a centre half a midfielder and a striker. I wouldn't mind the kid from Brighton as full back cover, Dawson Forest or Knight from Fulham as CB, van Bommell midfielder and any one of Keane, Beattie or Hartson up front.

We need competition for Jlloyd Samuel so Babayaro at Chelsea would be nice. James Beattie would go down a treat as would Andy Reid. Hate to admit it but if Savage wants a move we should bid for him.

LB, strikers, second LM, new 2nd GK if Postma leaves, thats about it. Robbie Keane + others.

10) What style of play can we expect from you on Saturday?

Who knows...... Brazil or Barnsley could turn up on the day.

Slick passing with no end product.

Attacking along the floor full backs getting foward, good non long ball football, except when Sorenson & Mellberg get it.

11) Which Rovers player are you most scared of?

Not scared of any but Dickov always steps in with useful goals and needs treating with respect.

Not scared of any of them although Dickov stands out.

Fear what fear. Ermmm I don't know, Barry Ferguson? Emerton, Reid looked good.

12) Any memories from Blackburn v Villa games that stick in your mind?

Savo gobbing at Villa fans at your place a few years ago.

Catching a chill at villa park 2 seasons ago. February 03 it was. Hammered down with rain, got soaked but we knocked you for 4 so it was all good. ( it was 3-0 but hey we were crap)

Mellberg curing your injured player via assult of your physio, crap game lost 2-0 but hey it was funny.

13) Where do you think both teams will finish at the end of the season?

t'Rovers will struggle to stay up and Villa 7th-10th if strengthened.

Us - Mid table you - Just avoid relegation

Villa- top 8 Blackburn- survival, I hope

14) And finally - last season the two games between Rovers and Villa ended symmetrical. 0-2 to you at Ewood, 0-2 to us at Villa Park. This year its 2-2 from the Ewood Game. What’s your prediction for the score?

Should be a Villa win..... but it should have been last year as well.

1-0 to us

joyeaux noel.

Villa 2-0 Blackburn I think it'll probably be wrong however.

Merry Christmas from myself and the rest of ASTONishedVilla.

Thank you, and I would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. (After January 1st of course)

I would also like ot thank those people who helped me this past fortnight, and I wish you all a good New Year.

Flopsy

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Flopsy...nice one. The best question was who do you fear most? ask that question of any eam and they would also struggle to answer apart from Dickov, and that is only because he is such a pain.

Anywho I love my annual visit to the Villa apart from the odd rare defeat. A good ground for the Rovers.

ps. I hope the police turn up this time to save us from the annual coach bricking.

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Flopsy...nice one. The best question was who do you fear most? ask that question of any eam and they would also struggle to answer apart from Dickov, and that is only because he is such a pain.

Or it might be because he's pretty good.

1-1, Stead starting 2005 as he means to go on.

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It will be a huge blow if we fail to keep our unbeaten run going against a Villa side on a losing streak with key players out of form or injured.

Villa Park has been a happy hunting ground for the Rovers but twice in recent seasons we have gone there in not dissimilar circumstances to now (us looking OK, them not) and lost: 0-2 just after promotion in 2001 and 0-3 in a deluge the season before last after we had stuffed them 4-1 at Villa in the Cup.

Fortunately we don't have Souness around to completely under motivate the players for an on paper "easier" fixture.

However, Villa defended well enough against Man U last night to make me fear our lack of quality up front will cost us.

Another 0-0.

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If it's the one we went in last year it is called the Cap n' Gown and the station is Witton. Have a good one.

Thats the one. Usually pretty friendly in there, however if i remember rightly there are not many seats, and the toilet flooded last year wink.gif

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Just had a look at the form charts and I was surprised to see how badly Villa have been doing recently. They have taken 1 point from their last 6 games (we have taken 9 points). Also looks like they are down to the bare bones due to a few injuries.

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This game is a bonus one for me. After winning at Bolton we can go there with little pressure on our backs. I would have settled for 2 points from the Bolton and Villa games considering our situation. As it stands we have surpassed my target, so anything is a bonus.

It won't be pretty they'll it edge by a goal.

1-0 Villa Angel

Charlton is the important game. Anything gained at Villa is a bonus.

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Hey hey hey, I'm back folks. Haven't really had the time at school to keep up with the messageboard, but I've certainly been following Rovers results, and I must say that I have faith in Sparky to continue to turn things around. One loss in the last ten matches isn't a bad record, and if someone can start scoring goals then the midtable finish that many of us predicted can certainly still happen.

9) Who do you want (realistically) to sign in January? What positions do you need to strenghen?

Need a leftback as cover, a centre half a midfielder and a striker. I wouldn't mind the kid from Brighton as full back cover, Dawson Forest or Knight from Fulham as CB, van Bommell midfielder and any one of Keane, Beattie or Hartson up front.

Just thought that was kind of funny. Signing "the kid from Brighton" (I'm guessing he means Daniel Harding), Dawson, van Bommel and Beattie wouldn't exactly fit into Flopsy's "realistic" requirement... unless of course Villa have £12 million or so sitting around that no one else knows about.

I'd hope Stead gets the start in this one alongside the in form Dickov and breaks his duck for the year. If he can find his stride, the goals needed by Rovers to stay up needn't come from an outside source.

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