The alacrity with which Villa cleared the dressing room obviously indicates that decisions had been made a while back and that there’s no time to waste getting the club remade in time for the preseason. So, Promotion Plan was implemented, and it seems a lot of homework has been done. Exhibit A was the speed with which they got Jota in, and now Exhibit B is what’s being called the shock signing of Wesley.
“How long was that last 15 minutes?” Oh, Deano. An eternity. But you did it. Villa did it. And now we’re back where we belong. I really still can’t believe it.
I’ve seen Villa mocked a bit for their celebrations following the dramatic shootout victory at The Hawthorns. But when you think of all that’s happened, all that the players and supporters have been through, you can’t begrudge them one bit. It was a feat worth celebrating. A moment worth cherishing. No, we didn’t win any silverware, didn’t claim promotion. But what we did celebrate on the night was long overdue.
It wasn’t a thing of beauty, but Aston Villa found a way through Albion’s bus-park to gain a critical 2-1 advantage in leg one of the playoff semifinal. Another fightback, and a return to winning ways in a game that counted. This team doesn’t have much quit in it. In days past, I wouldn’t have been at all surprised to see Villa walk away on the wrong end of an 0-1 scoreline.
Here we are again, three games between another season in the Championship or a return to the big stage. And if Villa want it enough and go play like it, I’d not bet against them.