Welcome back football. We have missed the taste of dubious away ground catering and accompanying defeat in equal measure.
In all seriousness this was as tricky a game as was to be expected. Wednesday looked assured in a division they know well and should have escaped last term.
Villa showed glimmers of hope, it isn’t all doom and gloom. Elphick was a standout perforner, instantly likeable at centre half, berating & battling.
However, given that so little has changed in terms of faces, our shortcomings were never far away.
Wasteful in the final third, dodgy service to the strikers and a midfield that desperately needs rebuilding: these are the glaring issues.
A midfield consisting of Bacuna, Westwood and a very disappointing Gary Gardner will need urgent revision based on this evidence.
Whilst the referee overlooked arguably an opportunity for a 2nd yellow after Hutton was checked, Wednesday delivered the telling moment.
After a grim sliced clearance from Gollini, Elphick’s attempts to head away ricocheted into the path of the advancing forward,who coolly finished.
It was a demonstration of direct finishing if nothing else.
Being so late on Villa barely mustered a reply and were no doubt wondering how we’d managed to lose the match.
Huge questions remain about our fullbacks, midfield and perhaps there is need for another striker.
Xia watched on, hopefully more aware of the task at hand than ever before. A task that will not get resolved on Twitter alone.
Defeat isn’t the end of the world, but the mistakes and limitations within the starting eleven must be rectified sooner rather than later.
Up next is a Cup tie at Luton this Wednesday evening.
So….Welcome back all. You’ve missed this all too familiar feeling I’m sure?