After the FA Cup exploits of Villa’s youth, the senior side’s Covid crisis has taken center stage. Spurs is obviously postponed (sorry Fulham), and we’ll see what we’ve got to work with against the Toffees on Sunday. Maybe. So let’s talk about the kids some more.
Villa found themselves down a man against Crystal Palace and took the game by the scruff of the neck to sweep aside the Eagles 3-0 with two second-half goals. Now it’s Chelsea, and the 48-hour turn. Lampard’s men looked sluggish and devoid of ideas against Arsenal, which, unfortunately, means Frank will be demanding a response.
Turns out 5-0-0 wasn’t meant to be. Shame, that. And even more so since the inevitable first defeat was a bit resounding. Bielsa won the first PL round with Smith, and Leeds ran away clear and deserved winners. However, it wasn’t as inevitable on the night as it turned out looking.
It’s hard to overstate what an important victory this was. No, we didn’t win anything, and no it won’t continue like this. But to come off the high of dismantling Liverpool, go away for two weeks, and return to grind out a win on the road against an undermanned but still highly capable and well-drilled Leicester squad shows a different mentality in the team. It’s not a game we’d have won last season. Neither was Liverpool, for that matter, but who’s counting?
All the superlatives have been used for a historic night. The absolute last thing anyone expected, most certainly the defending champions. And me. But now Villans have two weeks to enjoy a surreal 7-2 pasting of Liverpool to go second with a game in hand.