They say these things even out over a season. I was never convinced of that with Liverpool, and I'm not with Villa. In fact, what concerns me is that, by the time their luck changes (if it changes), their form and performances may pick up to compensate, making the catch up just as difficult.
So far this season they have been the beneficiaries of 5 own goals and 4 penalties, many of them deciders. They've also been the beneficiaries of outright spawn and gifts (the poxy late deflected winner at West Ham after being played off the pitch, Scott Carson's howler today, Jag's back pass etc).
I've looked at Villa's last 8 games, starting with the hugely fortuitous victory at Goodison. In fact, had we won that game, we'd now be level on points, regardless of the other good fortune (grrr!). But in their last 8 games they have W6 D1 L1. 5 of those 6 victories (including the one at Goodison) were undeserved. Today saw the run continue as normal, with an outright howler own-goal by Carson gifting Villa 3 more lucky points.
This bastardly good fortune shows no sign of abating, and it's pissing me off. We really have to win down there to keep this open, which we are capable of. But we are running out of rope.
On occasions, Villa can be exhilarating, but nowhere near as much as Martin O'Neil thinks. We've also had bits of luck this season, and played crap a few times whilst collecting points. But getting 5 own goals, 4 penalties and several free gifts is frankly taking the piss. This is not "making ones own luck" as they have by general consent been playing poorly for well over a month, with the exception of their home draw with Arsenal.
We have some big games coming up, none more so that Arsenal home & Villa away. I just pray that the fortunes of Everton & Villa swing before that game. My guess is that they will rediscover some form on or before that game and, combined with further good fortune, we'll lose and have to take 6th.
And then every time I look at the league table it brings a wry smile to my face. The idea that 4 teams qualify for the "Champions League" whilst only 1 quaifies for the Uefa Cup is patently absurd. That ratio used to be the other way around, with the Champions tournament being for, erm, Champions, and the second cup being for those that were near but not quite. Given the annual decline in interest & attendances in national cup competitions, allowing one Uefa Cup space for the winner is on the border of acceptability. Having 2 spaces for cup winners (or even cup runners-up!) is ridiculous.
Perhaps, if it ends up with Nottm Forest qualifying for the cup by losing 4-0 to Man Utd at Wembley, Everton can get special dispensation to qualify for finishing 6th. Just as, er, Liverpool did for missing out on 4th place recently.
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1 Posted 10/01/2009 at 21:42:37
Then Hull when they wrongly had a goal disallowed then Jammy Villa struck again, not once but twice. 1st with that own goal- if that silly tit of a defender used his left foot then it goes out. 2nd when although it weren?t a penalty they had the decision turned around. And if the ball had gone 1 foot lower it would have struck Youngs arm. Doesn?t that just top it off how fucking lucky they are.
Then today against West Brom when for the most part Brom outplayed them, but nope Villa?s luck strikes again. 1st off Agbonglohars strike was going nowhere but somehow scraped through Carsons body, and then in stoppage time that fucking Ashley Young (who I hate btw) tripped up Brom's man. Surely a penalty. Oh I'm forgetting Aston Liverpool don?t get decisions or bad luck go against them.
We have been superb from Tottenham game onwards but unlike Villa we don?t get the criminal luck they?ve been getting so I think 5th is best we can hope for.
PS Ashley Young as good as Ronaldo and Messi- Who exactly is Martin O?Neil trying to kid? Certainly not me...
2 Posted 11/01/2009 at 08:07:24
3 Posted 11/01/2009 at 08:59:46
It's what we do that counts so if we fail by end of season in 5th with Villa a point ahead, so be it. I mean come on, at least a non big 4 team are getting some luck their way, good for them.
4 Posted 11/01/2009 at 09:01:47
5 Posted 11/01/2009 at 09:20:42
6 Posted 11/01/2009 at 09:27:38
Arsenal are the only team Everton have a realistic chance of overhauling, unless the next few games result in victories. It does make me wonder where we could have been if we had started the season all guns blazing, we may have been dreaming of the Title too.
7 Posted 11/01/2009 at 09:34:11
Although comparing Villa's season of good fortune, with the 40 years of logic-defying luck enjoyed by the shite is a bit harsh, I can't disagree with anything you say.
Unfortunately we?re going to have to be patient here, the last minute penalty decision yesterday proves Villa?s luck isn't about to run out just yet.
They have some decent players, but they also have players who will be found out at the business end of the season.
Relax, we will reel them in...
8 Posted 11/01/2009 at 10:18:48
9 Posted 11/01/2009 at 10:24:07
Gifts and pens may be "lucky" but you still have to take them, like when Pienaar scored at Tottenham, or more to the point like when the Yak missed that pen on Day One of the season (how diferent could our start have been if he had stuck it away?)
The thing for me is Villa have ridden their luck and taken their chances, we haven't been as ruthless, we seem to spurn opportunities to push on (like we did away in Florence last season with our worst display of the season).
Everton have to become ruthless and have to keep doing well. The table doesn't tell lies over a whole season, if Villa finish above us then fair play to them ? it's up to us to be a better side and finish above them regardless of their "luck".
10 Posted 11/01/2009 at 11:34:30
11 Posted 11/01/2009 at 12:11:33
Villa?s luck will run out, and hopefully we will be close enough to capitalize on it.
12 Posted 11/01/2009 at 13:39:31
13 Posted 11/01/2009 at 13:47:37
We woukd be in the Champions League by now I reckon.
14 Posted 11/01/2009 at 14:21:20
Tony Marsh made that same call a couple of years back when Villa were in the bottom half of the table and he took a slaughtering for suggesting him instead of Moyes. Wasn?t far wrong after all was he?
I can understand the anger towards Villa?s luck, but right now, I don?t care who breaks the Sky 4 cartel up, us, Villa, Spurs or anyone, someone has to do it, the sooner it's done the better it will be for the Premier League as a competition.
A while ago I thought Moyes was going to crack it, and I still think with a bit more time, more money (spent wisely of course), less huffing, more decisiveness in the transfer market and an improved record against the Sky 4 will soon see to that.
15 Posted 11/01/2009 at 14:45:17
16 Posted 11/01/2009 at 15:33:58
17 Posted 11/01/2009 at 15:31:38
Martin O'Neill? Martin O'Neill ? FFS!
I thought you guys were glad to see the back of hoofball, Martin O'Neill is dedicated to hoofball, he did it with Leicester, dispite having one of the finest strikers in Europe he brought people like Hartson to Sellic so he could play that way again and he?s doing it now.
This is the Martin O'Neill who described his team's desperately poor erformance yesterday as "at times breathtaking"! He's strictly crash bang wallop and will never change, BTW how many times has he finished above Moyes?
Declan Brown ? "Tony Marsh made this call a couple of years ago" ? Was that before he was screaming for Mark Hughes and Dodgy Harry ? both of whom are facing the drop dispite spending a king's ransom ? or after?
DM made a mistake yesterday, so what, all managers make mistakes, he?s doing a terrific job and will finish above crash bang wallop Martin again.
18 Posted 11/01/2009 at 17:57:16
I believe Villa have drawn CSKA Moscow in the UEFA cup. I don?t think luck and decidedly favourable refereeing decisions will help them through that tie, and it will be interesting to see how, should it happen, their exit from Europe will affect the sides league form. I think a lot of us agree that until either Pips tackle on Ronaldo or the Kevin Brock-esque backpass from Jags (v Villa), we had been way off form in terms of results and style of play since going out on penalties to Fiorentina. That knocked us hard and Moyes was unable to pick the players up. Indeed the summer, rather than convalescing the situation, compounded it with lack of transfer activity and the never ending story of Moyes? contract, will he wont he sign a new one. Hopefully the same affect will be felt at Villa Park should they go out. They have a fairly ordinary side, once Agbonlahor and Young stop playing out of their skins.
I actually believe it was neither Pip nor Jags that has made us turn a corner this season. I think it happened when Moyes hand was forced and we started playing the 4-6-0 system. Gone was hoofball. Arteta in defensive midfield (where he was apparently awesome for Rangers some years ago). Since losing the Yak v Spurs, we have scored in 6 of the seven games, and kept clean sheets in 6 out of those 7 also. The Villa smash and grab aside, we have won 5 drawn 1 (Chelski) in that sequence also. Jags and Lescott look comfortable in central defence, Baines at last being given a much deserved chance at left back, and it was noted even by Boro fans after our win at The Riverside, that despite us having no strikers on the park, every attack we waged saw more blue shirts inside their box than red shirts in ours when they were on the offensive.
We have 4 huge games next. I?m struggling to decide which Anfield derby I?d prefer us to win if we can?t have both. Is the cup our most realistic chance of Uefa Cup football next season, or is chasing down 5th or 4th in the league? I know a league win is doubly sweet as not only does it advance us but it hinders their title challenge. I can?t help wanting to finish as high as possible, but also desperate for some silverware. I guess we will just have to win both derbies then!
Looking past the big 4 games though, the subsequent 7 league fixtures are all inimitably winnable: Bolton (h), Newcastle (a), West Brom (h), Blackburn (a), Stoke (h), Portsmouth (a), Wigan (h). A nice sequence if we can continue a run of form akin to the last 7 games (dependent on whether the big 4 games knock or bolster confidence). In amongst these fixtures Villa play their CSKA double header, before we play the crucial away match at Villa Park on 11th April. We?ve beaten them their once in, is it 20 years now? A 1-3 win a few years back, a repeat of that result and style of play in this season?s fixture would be most welcome.
19 Posted 11/01/2009 at 19:29:13
To get lucky goals and penalities you have to be in the box and have your oppositions under pressure constantly, that’s what makes your luck.
I seem to remember a couple of deflect goals for us recenlty, Spurs, Sunderland and an dubious offside goal decision against Hull, LUCK?
As for Martin O’Neil vs David Moyes give me DM any day of the week.
Can’t believe this driffle.
20 Posted 11/01/2009 at 19:37:53
21 Posted 11/01/2009 at 20:18:45
As a poster above has said, we have had some fortune too, but not much. I like the villa - to some extent - and I wish you well, but I doubt that too much has changed since last year, and once the bubble bursts its hard to patch it up again. Add to that the hardest part to come for your boys - if you do stay top 4 or 5 this season, you are going to have to beat that next. Is that possible? What will the fans think when next season sees a lower league finish than this one?
Anyway, this is a toffee website so sling yer hook :D
22 Posted 11/01/2009 at 23:37:30
23 Posted 12/01/2009 at 08:46:59
There?s a joke that goes round this area of the world and it goes something like this: How do you tell the difference between a Villa fan, a Bluenose (Birmingham), a Baggies fan or a Wolves fan? The answer????COZ IT?S ALWAYS SOMEBODY ELSE?S FAULT? !!
When ever we play crap most of us with an once of intelligence say we played crap. And round here it?s the same with Birmingham, West Brom and Wolves fans. They seem to freely acknowledge that when they have played a crap game they hold their hands up and say so. But Villa fans?.OMG ! You just can?t believe some of the turd-like excuses they come out with. They seem to think the world owes them a favour and that MON (Martin O?Neill or is that Man Of Nonsense?)
I am confident that it won?t be too long before Villa?s long run of luck will come to an end. The law of averages surely must come into play. It?s not too long now until they play Man U at Old Trafford and the RS at Anfield and for once in my life I?ll be hoping that both of them give the Villa a damn good spanking and thus restore parity.
Finally and looking at it in another way, they are in a similar position to what we were last season when we were chasing a top four place + Uefa Cup last 16 etc etc. We failed because our squad was not big enough or diverse enough to last the full season and so we just got over the line in 5th at the very end. I see Villa going the same way. Their squad is NOT as good as the Man Of Nonsense suggests and I believe that having their fingers in so many pies with a relatively small squad will eventually end in tears and when that happens I for one will not be crying in my tea.
24 Posted 12/01/2009 at 10:38:25
Could they cope with losing 4 key player the way we have losing the Yak, Vaughan, Saha and Victor? ? that?s the equivalent of them losing Young, Agbonlahor and Milner, would they still be winning? I don?t think so. Trust me there luck will fail and there squad will break. I wouldn?t bet on us pulling 6 points back on any of the other teams above us but I predict Villa will drop plenty of points between now and many to poor opposition as well.
25 Posted 12/01/2009 at 13:11:06
Unfortunately for us, we don't have a chairman with any ambition or business acumen that would enable us to push that little bit harder in the Premier League. We are 6 players short of having a real go and BK doesn't have a pot to piss in so Villa will do for me. Saying that, I also think they will blow up in February when the dreaded Uefa Cup campaign starts again.
26 Posted 12/01/2009 at 13:17:37
27 Posted 12/01/2009 at 20:20:53
I'm no Villa fan, Matthew, but surely you know they have won the European Cup? Like us, they are a massive club built on history and tradition (founder members ? in fact, as my Villa mates remind me, we are all guests in the league they setup. I hate it, but the Villa chairman was the chap who, along with the likes of us, actually organised the Football League).
Now I know they are having a bit of luck and riding high, a falsely high position you might say (you might say the same about us too), but that?s no reason to paint ?em with the same shyte covered brush as the RS. I'd sooner share a pint with a Villain that a gobshyte.