It’s been a mixed few weeks at Villa Park. A 4-1 hammering at Sheffield United set a dour tone ahead of the international break, with a lasp gasp equaliser at Blackburn keeping Steve Bruce’s head above water.
Despite a comfortable victory over Rotherham midweek, Bruce chose this positive return to winning ways to fire comments at both fans and local press. It turns out that supporters don’t appreciate being considered unintelligent or part of a “mad few”.
Intelligence wasn’t something that the manager was demonstrating during the Sheffield Wednesday pre-match conference, amusingly referencing Wednesday player Forestieri as a threat. All well and good, but for the fact that the striker is suspended for the visitors trip to Villa Park.
Wednesday came to Villa Park last season and secured a 2-1 victory. It was also the game that saw John Terry sustain a metatarsal injury. As such, we’ll be hoping for better luck this time around.
In a season where the ambition is promotion, Villa must begin to build momentum in a league where winning consistently is key. This is the template laid down by Newcastle and Wolves and countless others before them.
The opportunity to secure two home wins and six points in a week is also something which should be seized upon with this in mind. Indeed, Bruce must surely recognise this not only if we are to confirm our intent, but that he can demonstrate his ability to see the job through as well.
- Villa can rise as high as 3rd with a win.
- Last season loanee Josh Onomah is currently at Wednesday.
- Former Villain Barry Bannan is a key figure for the visitors.
- Wednesday have won just 1 of last 5 away games.
- Villa have no new injury concerns ahead of the encounter.
- Aston Villa Form: DDLDW
- Sheffield Wednesday Form: WWWDL
- 34,000+ expected at Villa Park.
With the visitors depleted of some key first teamers, theres an advantage to be taken for Villa.
Whilst form hasn’t been great this term, there were positives to take from the last win, with Abraham looking potent alongside Kodjia. With creative options like Grealish, supplemented by a hungry looking Bolasie, going forward we carry a threat. We do need to take our chances though.
If we can find some defensive balance, I expect a narrow home victory.
Mess around with the defensive set up and make the wrong call with a defensive midfielder as well, this could be easily be a lifeless affair. Let’s hope that Bruce allows a few faces to press and test the visitors today.