Since the job’s only halfway done, the business at hand tonight will be all about whether Boro can or will shuffle things around. Or whether you can negate Traore twice in four days using the same tactics. In other words, how will Adama and Tony Pulis react? And can Villa conjure up a repeat performance? Boro will be desperate, and Villa can’t afford to retreat into a shell. Now’s the time to roar and give Fulham something to think about.
Here we are. Forty-six games played, 46 games out the window. There’s only two that count, now. Villa’s aspirations, kindled by Dr. Tony Xia’s ambitions, will either be within reach or cruelly denied by the time we crawl into bed Tuesday night. And how we feel tonight may well be all we need to know.