FA Cup opportunity

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Bruce needs to get Villa up and running from the off.

Don’t let the title of this blog post fool you: I don’t mean that we have a real chance of winning the FA Cup or the league. I don’t believe that.

It would, of course, be nice to put a good cup run together. However, let’s be realistic. This year that should not be a priority. The main aim this year is promotion.

In recent months that goal has looked much more achievable, certainly ever since Bruce came in. More recently, the frustration of inconsistency has started to gather pace and although we should be grateful that things are not anywhere near as bad as they were pre-Bruce, it would be good to see an unblemished run of games again.

So why is the FA Cup match against Tottenham Hotspur a good opportunity?

Well, as I see it, it is a chance to prove ourselves.

If we could get a decent result against a team near the top of the Premier League then we can prove to the Championship that we mean business. It can give the fans a wonderful away day but, perhaps most importantly, it can give the players the confidence they need to pick up more positive results in our league.

If they can beat one of the best teams in the country away then they will go into the next game feeling they can beat anyone, a characteristic all teams need if they are going to succeed.

At the moment, whenever I watch Aston Villa, I feel that the players need a bit of convincing that they should be winning. That’s a hard thing to achieve and the only way to do it is to continually clock up wins. A victory over a club in an higher division can create a buzz that is contagious – and we certainly need that if we still hope to get into the play-offs.

Every time we win, we struggle in the next game. It is infuriating. A win in the FA Cup could give the team the kick needed to ensure that silly games against the likes of Cardiff City are not lost needlessly.

A win against Tottenham Hotspur in a cup competition could really help our league ambitions.

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