Thoughts and issues regarding the past and present of a great football club by "The Chronicler".

Friday, 26 April 2013

Wigan To Fall Off Their Pier?

Here are Wigan's remaining PL fixtures...

Spurs (h) (this week-end)
Albion (a)
Swansea (h)
Arsenal (a)
Villa (h)

The key here - as I see it - is that the Albion thru Arsenal matches, plus the Cup Final before the Arsenal match (4 matches), have to be played over a 11-day spell.

I'm not going to count my chickens, but I'd say that this fixture load could well bring the end for Wigan.

I can't see them getting more than a point each out of the Spurs and Albion matches, but while they may well get all 3 against Swansea (a potential total of 5 points) there's almost a certain defeat waiting at the Emirates, particularly if Wigan are beaten heavily by Man City in the cup final only 3 days before.

That would put Wigan 2 points ahead over Villa if Villa fail to pick up any more points before the last match of the season.

It could be that Villa just need one win from their next 3 matches and before the Wigan visit to ensure survival.

However, I have been informed about the awful stat that whoever Wigan have played in the last game of the season for the last four years has been relegated! And we play them them in the last game. Gulp.

Monday, 15 April 2013

The Engine's Still Revving!

Before the Fulham match, the BBC sports page on that match stated:
    For Villa fans it must be just like that scene from The Great Escape film. Steve McQueen is nearly there. The Swiss Alps are just across the barbed-wire fence. The motorbike is revved. Jump it this time! Get there!
And we are still trying to get over the fence, engine racing like crazy!

It was, of course, a disappointing result having yet again had chances to put the match beyond doubt, with the own goal boy missing a glorious opportunity towards the end.

I feel that the loss of those 2 points could be crucial, certainly as Sunderland have found some life under their new manager. Villa's last matches are:

    Apr 22 A Man Utd
    Apr 29 H Sunderland
    May 4 A Norwich C
    May 11 H Chelsea
    May 19 A Wigan A

So, it's important that the team do not get a bad result at OT (meaning a thrashing) and are able to raise themsleves to get at least a point out of Sunderland.

Given a draw against Sunderland will, in my opinion, still leave 2 wins to be obtained in the last 3 games. It's not easy - plenty of nailbiting yet.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Are we safe? Of course! (says he, nervously)

Three wins in four matches and a genuine capability of maintaining superiority over bottom-half of the league teams have sewn the basis of Villa's recovery since January. That Liverpool out-muscled and out-thought Villa in the second half last week was more of a reflection of the fact that they have a couple of old heads that knew how to get the better of the Villa. That is Villa's current downfall in not having any player in the team of both sufficient experience and level of ability to guide the rest. Stan (Petrov), you have been missed in that department.

As a wise writer in the Daily Mirror put it after the Stoke match:
    As a Villans fan, you must feel as though you are in on the start of something, that you are party to a worthy new project ­ one that might stutter in its embryonic stage, one that might never reach satisfactory fruition, but one that has a certain nobility in its concept and one that will intrigue and entertain as it unfolds.
A couple of wins may well be sufficient to ensure safety, and in these remaining matches, surely we can see 6 points being gained out of Fulham and Sunderland - and in the latter match 3 points could be decisive as Sunderland are currently below the Villa.
    Apr 13 H Fulham
    Apr 22 A Man Utd
    Apr 29 H Sunderland
    May 4 A Norwich C
    May 12 H Chelsea
    May 19 A Wigan A
To have safety sorted before the visit to Norwich - and certainly before Wigan - would be very pleasing.

I believe safety is within reach. But that will not stop the fingernails being kept very short until the matter is sorted!