Here we are on a Sunday with the second leg of the derby and all to play to for. Really not a lot to be said about that.

What we’ll be looking at is which of Dean Smith’s comments were smokescreens or not. McGinn at left back is certainly interesting. He’s got the engine to go back and forth, and if he’s in on the left, that would seem to mean Hause would be central with Mings. And since Neill Taylor seems to be fit, it would be rather interesting if McGinn took his spot rather than Whelan’s. I’m not sure I see any reason for the Jedinak at CB scenario. Which means it’ll probably happen.

In the abstract, I’d slot McGinn in for Whelan any day of the week. We played awfully well with the Grealish, McGinn, Hourihane midfield before Jack succumbed. But Whelan has had two of his best games at Villa, and, well…Given Elphick’s injury, leaving Whelan in and playing McGinn at left back probably keeps the dressing room happy and poses sides a different problem.

Anyway, that’ll be Smith’s call. I’m thinking we can be good either way.

Over to you.

Comments 111

  1. Match day
    Same side as last week with Taylor at lb,Taylor makes less mistakes than Hutton yet people want Hutton playing because he shows effort even tho it’s always in wrong areas,mcginn can come on at 50mins Mark he was way out of form before suspension

  2. In town picking up the car and snaffling a breaky and some strong coffee.

    I think Deano will make minimal changes but having seen him getting pelters for not changing much in our drawing streak people on the web are worried he might change something 🙂

    My idea of changing it would be drop Albert for mcginn and go 4132 .

  3. For the old codgers like me who can’t remember sh*t.
    Just got up, but am watching this one.
    Mark – breaky? what on earth are you eating mate?
    Nice to see Davies back.

    Steer, Elmohamady, Mings, Hause, Taylor, Whelan, Hourihane, Grealish, Adomah, El Ghazi, Abraham

    Subs: Kalinic, Jedinak, Bjarnason, McGinn, Kodjia, Green, Davis

  4. Blues are utter scum. If the EFL do not deduct points for that then they should be ashamed.

    Regarding the match, a very poor start from Villa…being overrun in midfield, as per usual

  5. That was disgusting behaviour, caught JG unaware from the back. Grealish seems ok though, took out some of the antagonism from thr City players too.

  6. Iang- has a full in pig fest with a couple of eggs thrown in mate, and very nice it was too.

    Slow start but atmosphere is very charged up hopefully blues blow themselves out .

  7. Blues are technically s**t but they’re just quicker and hungrier than Villa; tackling and fighting harder. That is Smith’s fault that Villa have not started with the same attitude. Whelan was a world-neater against a s**t Derby side. Hourihane is always anonymous in a fast-paced, aggressive game.

  8. PW
    They’ll run out of steam.
    Very nearly 1 up from Abraham.
    If we go 1 up it should take the sting out of it & the football get better.
    A lot of Blues fouls going unpunished

  9. Smith needs to get El Ghazi and Whelan off at half-time. I’m sick and tired of all the self-congratulations after a win against a shambolic Derby and then when it gets a bit tasty in a match like this they’re not up to it at all.
    Smith’s tactics are clueless. The Sky pundit is pointing out the obvious

  10. One of those deals where we just have to see how it plays out. They’ve been more aggressive/physical, getting at most of the loose balls. About what you’d expect at home. Hasn’t amounted to much.

    Curious to see if/when McGinn comes in. Some added energy in the middle couldn’t hurt.

  11. Mark, yes, of course it is largely inherited players but Smith has made no improvement based on the games, and results, I’ve seen. So what was the point of sacking Bruce? Smith was not the first choice and has a huge pedigree at Walsall and Brentford

  12. Green & McGinn on
    That’s better nearly 1-0
    McGinn has made a difference already
    Abraham kicked in the stomach by their goalie, about par for the course.
    PW Hause is all we have, & he is a left back at rb

    Yeeees! Jack 1-0

  13. Villa should win from here but it doesn’t disguise a poor performance against a terrible Blues team. The table doesn’t lie and I see no improvement from Smith

  14. PW- you’ve watched this team under Bruce and your asking why Smith hasn’t transformed them in al aspects? Think your asking to much there, they have been lightweight and still are. Smith has improved the defence he’s going to need time much like the Norwich manager was afforded to reform the club. For me it’s as simple as that.

  15. IanG…with a win, sure that’s what we want.

    Are you happy with the performance? I’m not, because it re-Inforces what a poor squad we have. Mings, Grealish and Abraham won’t be here next year.

  16. I’m sure smith isn’t overjoyed with the performance but there has been far worse from this lot. Right now I’d take three points and three more midweek and see where we are season end.

    Clubs in the champs are financed by the owners so we have still got financial clout.

  17. The ref’s cr*p, no surprise
    They may be cr*p, but small heath are trying to make an effort.
    Fortunately they lost.
    Forest is looking interesting, I doubt that it’ll be a wrestling match

  18. Because Steer was on loan put out there by Bruce who brought in Nyland, maybe if he’d had Steer there to access he might not have who knows.

  19. PW,

    Wasn’t vintage, no, but it was clear they came out to stop us playing. Was always going to be a bit ugly. McGinn made a good impact, Green and Hourihane unlucky not to score.

  20. John yes, winning ugly v the Vermin is all you can do.

    I just hope that people see that the Derby result/performance was the-calibrated today and an enormous improvement will be needed in the last 10 games in order to make the top 6. After 36 games last year I think Villa had nearly 70 points, so a lot of teams will need to slip up

  21. Yes the Gardner misses were sweet as was the penalty shout , maybe our luck will change. Getting punched by a wanker might mean Jacks given a bit more sympathy from refs. Most fouled still by a mile and missed 14 games

  22. All you can do is go out and win, so they’ve done it twice now. Once with flair, once by just gritting it out and having a bit more quality.

    Over run-in? I think the last two should give them some confidence they can get results however it goes.

  23. On the penalty appeal…Both Mings and Hause play with fire back there. There’s one waiting to happen, but it’s nice to see some physicality and a bit of the hard play we get thrown at us. If they’d have backed off, those high balls probably would’ve undone us.

  24. Well agree with most of the comments here, but I am like Hendry, and think Mings was immense, and MOM, and Jack also, after what happened, and his continued vision and leadership, topped off with a great goal.
    What a difference when McGinn came on, really impressed and didn’t put a foot wrong, but still not happy with El Ghazi, who for me is a bit lightweight, and too easily knocked off the ball.

    We should all send thank you messages to Craig Gardner for his misses….still a Villa boy at heart, hence his friendly rugby tackle on Grealish..!!

  25. We also have another plus in that Tuanzebe is back next week, and Birkir looks as if he is ready to make his mark if he gets a chance to play. Lansbury must also be close, so we should now be able to field a much stronger squad going into these last ten games.

    Looking forward to Forest and Middlesboro coming up now. These two wins will have given the team a real lift, and they can only get better. Noticed that Jack said Dean allowed him 60 minutes the first game and 70 minutes this one, and wants to get him back to playing 90 minutes, so maybe he will get 80 minutes against Forest..!!

  26. PP
    Yes Mings was immense, & McGinn & Green made a difference.
    Even the viking caused some mayhem.
    I thought that Hause wasn’t too bad considering he was on his weak side, & Taylor had one of his better matches.
    I also thought that a lot of fouls by the Heath went unpunished, so the penalty not being given was a bit of justice.
    The wind made a lot of play a lottery.
    I’d like to see Che Adams in a better team, as he seems a reasonable & tough but fair.
    Craig bGardner? Well rid of.

  27. From Newsthump
    ‘The FA has said the incident will be dealt with appropriately, and fans across the country have admitted that very few of them would shed a tear if Birmingham city were wound-up entirely with the ground demolished and buried underneath a supermarket.’

  28. Mings has that will to win, shame the left hand side has been robbed of the hause and el Ghazi combo it was showing promise. All in all with the s**te weather and revved up oppositions glad to of not had to work to hard for 3 points.

  29. There’s video of a BCFC steward pushing & then kneeing Jack in the thigh from behind during the goal celebration, & then being led away by police.
    I don’t think they’ll finish above us now after the FA have a go, as they may well be severely dealt with.

  30. Mings was immense

    Grealish is class

    Mcginn made a huge difference

    The conditions were difficult today.

    Not sure why people are critical of the performance

    Grealish scoring the winner was perfect retribution – absolutely brilliant

    We will get in the play offs

    Wembley awaits.

  31. Any win in a local derby is a good win. We struggled a bit until the changes were made and then our extra class started to show. With Tuanzebe back we’ll have a decent back line and amazingly may even still have a look in at a play off place.
    Gutted for Gardener. . . . poor lad lost the game for them at the end and may struggle to sleep tonight. . . . tee hee.

  32. So does anyone think that The FA will change the habit of a lifetime and actually take decisive action?

    It’s bad that BCFC have fans who behave like this and that the thug was applauded off the pitch by so many of their other fans but I don’t think that any of us could hand on heart say that no Villa fan would ever behave in a similar way.

    The key point is that Birmingham City ‘either’ provided inadequate stewarding, ‘or’ one of their stewards deliberately allowed the thug onto the pitch.

    It would seem unlikely that a steward would act in this way, but we have now seen with our own eyes that another one of their stewards assaulted Jack Grealish, not once (when he pushed him in the back,), but twice when he appeared to kick or knee him from behind, an assault for which he was subsequently arrested.

    I see lots of City fans saying that it would be wrong to punish the club or the other fans for the actions of one thug. The inadequate journalist Neil Moxley is also trying to defend the club. The fact is that Birmingham City Football club ARE responsible for what happened. That much seems absolutely inescapable to me.

    A fine simply isn’t enough. The FA must take a strong stand and nip this in the bud. Other fanatics will have seen what happened today and may now consider doing something similar in a televised game. All clubs need to be shown that failure to control their fans and defend players will be VERY harshly dealt with.

    To my mind, this means games being played behind closed doors AND a points deduction.

    I expect the FA to “take this very very seriously” . . . . and then impose a pathetically irrelevant fine.

  33. Brilliant result yesterday. Not the first time we have seen a moron on the pitch at the sty. The rabbit punch he landed on Jack should land small heath in big trouble not to mention the steward who was also arrested for assaulting him. Shameful scenes, how low can they stoop? Jack though landed the knockout punch. You just knew it would happen. It was also Jack’s first appearance at the sty. He’ll remember it forever. So will I.

  34. Somehow……we are back in the promotion race. Get a result at Forest and things will be looking much better. Axel back for Blackburn according to DS.

  35. axel and mings at cb Christ alive im in love! House lb

    To be in for a chance of playoffs is insane after winning 2 in 13! We have just beat 2 teams above us and now have to do it again.

  36. 14 weeks in prison seems a very poor sentence for the Blue Nose Nobhead, surely 14 weeks of community service cleaning the litter and rubbish around the sty that he can never visit again would be more appropriate, as it definitely needs cleaning up.

    I am sure Jack will donate his £100 to the Acorns charity.

    The stewarding problem is a difficult one, as it could easily happen at Villa Park so early on in the match, as the stewards tend only to be in numbers around the away fans, and it would need the co-operation of our own fans to stop such an incident. It would be really sad to see large numbers of police and stewards being needed in grounds once more. Alf Garnet had the right idea in his “an audience with Alf Garnett”, where any hooligans at the match should be dealt with by having them flogged on the pitch at half time…That should include the Baggies fans that keep wrecking the away fans toilets at Villa Park..!!!

    really starting to warm up for Wednesday and the clash with the O’neill boys.. I am sure Jack and John will be well up for it, as well as the rest of the team. Looking forward to another immense display from Mings and his back four.

  37. Apparently there is a maximum sentence for the offence in a Magistrate Court, & it would have to be referred to Crown Court to get a stiffer sentence.
    Mind you he should have said that his name was Manafort, then he would have got probation.
    But he’s possibly with others from the sty in the Green, & I hope there’s room for more.

    He comes from Rubery so is possibly intimate with the mental institution there, & along with breeding offences & being a Small Heath supporter, I’m surprised that he isn’t a chipmunk & that they’re going to let him out again.

    The BM said that Rubery is in Warwickshire not Brum, which is news to me.
    The Con government seem to be still giving away any part of Brum that earns money, like the Airport & the NEC, to the richer parts.
    Maybe they should give Sparkbrook, Sparkhill, Northfield & Small Heath away while they’re at it.

    I’m looking forward to the Forest game as well, & the thought of having a defence back in a couple of weeks is like the thought of the old Bank’s bitter from the 70’s

  38. Ian
    I think 63 is a tad generous mate.
    63 is more like the combined mental age on match days at the soon to be supermarket

  39. IanG,

    The NEC was sold by Birmingham City Council to pay for the Equal Pay case they lost, when all the dinner ladies, etc got huge pay outs for their claim that they should paid the same as the male labourers, etc; who worked for the council.
    The airport was also city owned, and sold off to fund developments in city.

    This government, nor the previous ones have had any say in selling off the City’s family silver

  40. 63 is the number they can count up to on their own fingers and toes, individually.

    Apparently he said he was Not drunk, with his dad and did it for a laugh, anyone think he should of just said I’m guilty to save further embarrassment?

  41. Heroes-and-Villans. . . . yes play offs are still a possibility but still only an outside one.
    The average number of points for 6th place over the last 10 years has been 73. That means we’d need 22 more points from our last 10 games (in an average year)
    We can really only afford to lose 2 more games. . . possibly 3.
    Not impossible, but a big ask still.
    We couldn’t afford any more wobbles and our habitual draws would have to be turned into wins

  42. PP
    Not quite correct, although I was using exaggeration to make a valid point..
    The underfunding of B,ham & at the same time the giving of money to councils such as solihull has been going on for years, to create the imbalance where our silver, as you put it, has had to be sold.
    This is why the NEC & the Airport had to be sold.
    There are many examples, such as when we put a bid in for the Olympics at the same time as Manchester.
    Both Manchester & Brum were trying to build trams/light transit railways.
    Brum was planning this well before the Olympic bids, & had raised most of the money from the EU & business, & asked for a grant to complete it as part of the bid.
    We were told to f*ck off, while the tory government GAVE Manchester & their tory council at the time, about 60 million for theirs, & blagged that they were supporting both bids.
    They’ve been doing it for as long as I can remember, & I’m 70.
    We still haven’t finished the work here, but Manchester’s has beenfinished for years, along with government money for regeneration.
    What have we got for major regeneration? The Mythical High Speed Rail.

    This is why it happened, which is down to this & previous governments starting with Thatcher, & has been going on for years.
    Not that I particularly love everything the council does.
    If you only look at the party/business line, you miss the depth, & therefore the actuality of the experience.

  43. I’m off to watch Knight Fight on the History channel, six blokes in tin suits battering the Bejesus out of each other. Like to see our friend run on and show how its done 🙂

  44. PP
    ps: we only asked for about a 6 million grant.
    By the time the equal pay issue came, we had been drastically underfunded by the government.
    In fact as it stands we have had to find I think 80 mill to make up for the council being underfunded by government just to go backwards.
    It’s telling that there has been hardly any Tory councils that have had negative funding like ours, & many other Labour/Lib Dem councils.
    And we were the worst hit.

    This is the underlying picture that you don’t seem to know exists.
    & if you trumpet that partial truth, then you are part of the problem in B.ham, not the solution.
    But then many have risen in the ranks & forgot the realities of where they come from.
    In fact you sound like the county set in Herefordshire when you do so.

    I’m not anti you, I just object to being s**t on by the system, but then I had a Masters in the Establishment by the time I was 7, in the sadistic Dickensian orphanage that I was in at the time.

  45. IanG,

    You are absolutely right in what you say and I fully concur with you, but facts are facts.

    Birmingham has been DELIBERATELY stopped from developing by central government, but this was hidden for years, and the general public were not aware of what was really happening, and applied whether Birmingham council was labour or Tory, and whether the government was Labour or Tory.

    The powers that be were only interested in keeping everything London based, otherwise Birmingham would be a vastly different city today, being placed centrally in the country, and the opportunities that were there for all to see, building on the motorway network and its onward connections.

    The difference in the making of Manchester came about, as you should be aware, in the Harold Wilson days, when Piccadilly was redeveloped and the Manchester boom began, which at the same time was close to the major city of Liverpool, and the north then took the initiative, while Birmingham now has to play catch up.

    Our city was the leader back a century ago, with its own profitable electric company, gas company, bank and even a brewery. Birmingham always lead the way, including providing proper sewers, sanitation, and clean water. We have a lot to thank our Birmingham forefathers for.

  46. IanG,

    I have tasted the country set, but never been part of it, and have never forgotten my roots, which are embedded in Aston for over 7 generations, from when the Manor of Aston was the major hub, and Birmingham was not a major city. Aston is an important part of history, mentioned in the Doomsday book, before Birmingham existed.

  47. PP
    Yes we are both correct, but I will add that the government in the last 10 years has viciously suppressed Brum & us along with it.
    My folks also come from Aston, so we have much in common, so I bit a little as I still live here & it is raw.
    As for the county set, no you are not one of them, & nothing has changed much with them [or the establishment] in 40 years.

    I’m not aiming at you when I characterise it as the business version of the class system.
    But it has been proved that business functions better when it is ethical & is inclusive & cares for the workers.
    But too many people are just plain greedy to allow that, & believe that they too can be in the top tier without a reality check.
    A bit dumb really.

    Until relatively recently Manchester was a Tory stronghold, which is an illustration of the inherent corruption.
    To counter creating the entire NW as’Greater Manchester’ we have been forcibly shrunk, but are still the second city, & even as they created the Greater Manchester Authorities, our WMCC was disbanded.
    Methinks the West Midlands has a far bigger population, so it is untenable, but it still goes on, & we are still constantly ripped off.

    You also missed out the Elan Valley dams, that our forefathers built, & our clear, pure water that Thatcher GAVE to 7 Trent, without any compensation, to mix with the reconstituted mush that we now have to drink.

    It also happens with our club, who often seem to get a raw deal from the centralised powers that be, that earn a fortune from the game without putting much in.
    The football competition between us has also been skewed, but having the horrible experience of having a close relative as a MU supporter has brought it into stronger focus for me.

  48. Actually looking forward to Forest.
    There seems to be some progress, & I hope that it all starts to gel from now on, especially in a couple of weeks when Tuanzebe is back.
    The competition seems to be coming to life.

  49. Bristol dropping points again,win needed tomorrow night and we are right in the mix,axel be back after break,had to laugh someone said Smith said he expects lansbury to get injured over international break,the new glass man

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