Re:Aston Villa FC
20 May 2013 14:20
Yeah, Huddlestone wouldn't be a bad addition to our squad at all. He could be the tank of a man to compliment Westwood's Xavi-esque passing game. He would also bring something that we are severely lacking what with him being tall and strong. When we have Delph, Westwood, Sylla, Weimann, N'Zogbia and co trying to win headers and corners and what not, we look lightweight as hell. Good players in their own right, by all means, but just really, really small/weak. Who knows, he's not exactly the strongest but it could turn out to be Gary Gardner.
Now, just 'cos I'm bored and what not, I'm gonna evaluate the hell out of our squad and our first season under Lambo. First off, I'm not even gonna bother bigging up the likes of Benteke, Guzan, Lowton and Westwood too much, as their performances on the pitch kind of did all that for them. Benteke is a world beater, and at some point will be playing regular Champions League football (maybe for us, who knows haha). Guzan has been, for me, one of the best keepers in the league all season. He singehandedly kept us in some games we had no right to still be in. Truly deserved his place in the starting XI, and even in the 8-0 drubbing at Stamford Bridge he was my man of the match (which says a hell of a lot). Matty Lowton and Ashley Westwood will have at least one England cap over the next few seasons, both having the potential to be regualrs in the national squad for years to come.
Our attacking options are also pretty damn impressive. While Weimann and Gabby have been playing the part of supporting Benteke from the flanks, they have both still chipped in with a fair amount of goals, and if we're looking at them as strikers, our front four options of Benteke, Agbonlahor, Weimann and Bent are arguably the best outside of the top, top clubs.
Sylla has been impressive for me as well, especially considering he came straight into a tight-knit suqad, in the middle of our most difficult run, and still managed to establish himself as a very decent player, and a part of the squad. Good things in this lads future.
Jordan Bowery isn't going to recieve many accolades for his handful of appearances, but for someone who cost about as much as a packet of crisps to be plucked from obscurity (after scoring like 4 goals) he's looked a half decent player. Good on the ball, decent shot and a lot of pace. If he ends up being amazing Lambert deserves a freaking medal or something, and from what I've seen he has the potential.
Come to think about it, there are only a few players this season who have been disappointing. Bennett's had a few decent games as of late, but 98.6% of the time he has been laughable. Delph was a joke for a lot of the season, really tried my patience and at times I wanted him out of the club, Bradford being his lowest of low performances, but he's really turned it round this last nine or ten games. Now, I'm not gonna go on record saying I'm fully convinced he's turned the corner for good, but if he can play like he has in the last quarter of the season consistently for the next 10 years, he could end up going down as a legend. Big 'if', though. Vlaar, hmmmmmm, Ron Vlaar. One day he was a colossus, the next he was Liam Ridgewell (4-1 against Southampton comes to mind). I'm gonna put that down to getting used to the league, and I think after experiencing what the league is all about, with a full pre-season behind him he'll be a force in the centre of our defence next year. Clark, not good enough consistently. Some good games, some awful. Nathan Baker, as above, although I think Baker has more about him as a CB.
Useless: Barry Bannan. I fully expect to see him in the Championship next season, if not then Scotland. Should never even grace the bench at our club again, he's toss.
Ins: Central midfielder, experienced LB (Bennett is a decent enough understudy/cup LB), experienced CB (I don't class Herd as a CB, so the three of Vlaar, Clark and Baker isn't enough), a handful of kids with potential and (in a fashion) Gary Gardner.
Outs: Barry Bannan, Shay Given, Barry Bannan, Darren Bent, Barry Bannan, Enda Stevens (on loan), Barry Bannan, Richard Dunne and most of all Barry Bannan.
If you finish above us, I'll eat my shoe and wear a Villa shirt for the entire season. That's how confident I am.