Dean Smith & Co. took their first bows this week, and along with Christian Purslow, seemed to quite easily make a good impression all round. Well, Purslow seems a bit tightly wound, but you know what I mean. When he talked about Villa’s FFP woes being completely resolved? He made a pretty good impression. Richard O’Kelley seems likable and no nonsense. John Terry made all the right noises. And Smith? Smith managed to not say a whole lot other than promotion remains the goal.
Weeks of speculation and tabloid frenzy ended Wednesday with the appointment of Dean Smith as Steve Bruce’s successor at Aston Villa. Smith will be joined by none other than John Terry, who was seemingly part of the package for whoever we’ve been talking to.
And strangely this new era begins just as we hear of the passing of Sir Doug Ellis. RIP, Doug.
Here we are, moment of truth, more than simple silverware on the line. Apart from whichever match ultimately sealed our relegation, this is the most important game Villa have played since at least the European Cup Final. And perhaps the most important match for years to come.
Up til now, it’s all been fun and games, always another day, another possibility. After the final, well, season two in the promotion stakes will be final, for good or bad. I really just want to wake up and see that we’ve won. But before it comes to that, I have to say it’s been a good ride.
It’s a bit dizzying being up so high in the table. For a day or two, at least. But there we were in second when Aston Villa came up aces in the Second City Derby with second-half goals from Albert Adomah and Conor Hourihane powering the home side to a 2-0 win over small heath.