The biggest week of Xia’s reign

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Can Xia ensure Villa's promotion next season?

The next week will make or break the rest of Aston Villa’s first season in the Championship since relegation, with the Villans currently sitting ten points behind the play-off positions and a few players short of a side that could even consider a promotion push.

For Dr. Tony Xia and Keith Wyness, the next week will be the biggest test since the takeover in the summer and it will be season defining.

The owner backed Roberto Di Matteo in the summer with a wealth of signings but many are yet to deliver and he is going to have to dig deep once more to ensure that Steve Bruce has the means to fix the glaring problems in the Aston Villa ranks.

Steve Bruce seemingly has many irons in the fire as he looks to resurrect the sleeping lion. With Rudy Gestede and Pierluigi Gollini having left the club this month and only goalkeeper Sam Johnstone coming the opposite way, getting new players in over the next five days is key to the club’s play-off hopes.

Preston North End are the Villans’ next opponents at Villa Park on Saturday. The Lilywhites are in a good vein of form and will face a shaken Aston Villa side lacking in confidence, quality and the sort of intensity needed from a side that can secure promotion.

It is as clear as day that the midfield has a huge gap in it and the strike force is currently non-existent with Jordan Ayew and Jonathan Kodjia away on international duty. Fans’ hopes of reaching the play-offs are fading at a rate of knots.

I firmly believe that we will get the right bodies in but it’s been proven already that the bulldozer approach in the summer didn’t work out, leaving us with a top-heavy forward line up to January and very little depth in any other area.

Bruce et al need to decide whether to focus on getting the bodies in to attempt to go up first time or whether to get the right men in to see us through until the summer, when the manager and owner can reassess the situation.

As the games go by, I am beginning to think another year in the Championship may not be a bad thing for us but I am also wholeheartedly behind the idea of throwing the kitchen sink at the transfer window and doing whatever it takes to get the men in who can guide the club back to the Premier League at the first time of asking.

It is ridiculous to hear fans calling for the axing of Steve Bruce without the man being allowed to even shape his squad. He has mentioned plenty of times that things are not going as planned and that he needs new players in. We are halfway through the window and I am as disappointed as anyone that we haven’t got the men in yet and that the next week really is make or break for any promotion hope we still have.

There are still more than twenty games to go this season and it isn’t all doom and gloom. We haven’t played brilliantly by any stretch of the imagination so far under Steve Bruce he is an experienced man who knows what needs to be done to revive the club’s footballing fortunes.

6 COMMENTS

  1. Spot on again. Totally agree, it’s now or never for this season, although I think if we did scrape promotion we are nowhere near a premiership side and it would result in yet another relegation battle.

  2. lets face it we waisted at least 20 million in the summer,, gollini tisibola mccormack
    have just been not good enough but the club has to take responsibility as the first two
    were not ready and mccormack has has no service and been played out of position many times
    mccormack could still come good if we get the midfielders in to supply him
    you only have to look at videos of tom cairney setting up mccormack at fulham to realize how bad our midfield is
    we need to get gardner and tisibola out on loan and a complete new four across midfield,,, westwood and bacuna are toast and jedi needs a rest
    we are stuck with gabby but who ever plays up front needs service,,
    so lansbury cairney hourihane would be a good start,,

  3. People need to remember that the team that came down , would have been relegated again from the championship. Di Mateo went and bought what should have been good attacking options but the squad was too unbalanced and no depth . Bruce now has a chance to rectify this but im not sure the january window is ideal for a bit of an over haul. Bafflign is why the club let Gestede go while Ayew and Kodja are away on international duty.This was pure dumb business . The fact Bruce let this happen knowing we would then struggle for goals all through January is a strange one .However calling for him to be sacked is madness, there is literally no quick fix to this. Bruce needs time .If we get to the play offs by scraping over the line and some how get to the premier league at least we have the summer window to resolve any squad issues. To be honest we were in such a mess last year this is an improvement,so lets not be too critical just yet .

  4. Fully agree. When we were relegated I told my son that our first priority was to stay in this division, anything else was a bonus! However we have a long long way to go before what I think was our last good halcyon football as I like to see it under Martin O Neil. Keep the faith my friend we are ‘gods chosen few’ . Vtid😇

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