Another below-par performance for Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa in their local derby against Wolverhampton Wanderers made it three defeats in a row in the Premier League.
Gerrard made a few changes as Lucas Digne returned following injury while Leon Bailey and Morgan Sanson replaced Douglas Luiz and Danny Ings. The latter was missing due to his partner having a baby.
Villa were slow out of the traps and not for the first time this season but it was more defensive errors that ultimately cost them.
John McGinn slipped with the ball and allowed Joao Moutinho to race forward with the ball. He found Daniel Podence out wide as Ezri Konsa also slipped and allowed the forward to run in on goal. Podence delayed his shot and was dispossessed, Fabio Silva could only watch on as his shot was blocked before the ball fell to Jonny who smashed the ball into the top corner on the half-volley.
The Wolves fans were right behind their side as the home side began to dominate the game and it wasn’t long before they doubled their lead through another error from Villa.
Marcal crossed the ball and it caused chaos in the Villa area and Ashley Young, who earlier replaced the injured Digne, put the ball into his own net following pressure from Francisco Trincao.
In truth, when the players went in at half-time, it should have been 4-5 for the home side. Villa were all over the place as their season of inconsistency continued.
The home side looked on top again in the second half but as the half progressed, Villa started to get control of the game without looking any real threat.
Well, that was until Ollie Watkins probably should have scored. The England striker got behind Boly and Conor Coady to find himself one on one out on the left but his curled effort went the wrong side of the post.
Four minutes from time, Villa were handed a lifeline when Watkins was brought down in the penalty area. Despite their protests, Wolves could have no real complaints.
Watkins stepped up and slotted the ball off the post and into the net to make it 2-1.
Villa had a late chance through Matty Cash but Jose Sa was able to stay strong and deny the Poland right-back.
In truth, Villa deserved exactly what they got from the game, nothing. Back to the drawing board for Gerrard as next up is Tottenham at Villa Park.
- I am really struggling to see many positives from yesterday’s performance. The problem is it is becoming to common now where Villa are concerned.
- Too often in the past on this blog, I have questioned when consistent mistakes actually become errors. And what I mean by that is, I believe you learn from a mistake but when that mistake happens 2-3 or more times it then becomes an error and you have to question the quality of the player. We have many likeable characters at Villa who have helped us back to the level we currently find ourselves in but if we are to push on, we need to become ruthless and some of these players will have to depart or make way in the first team for better alternatives.
- Consistency has been a big issue for our team this season. This is our third season back in the Premier League and this is an issue. 11 wins and 16 defeats this season. It’s either all or nothing with Villa this year and that is a problem. The difference between top players and mediocre players can be motivation. Take Liverpool or Man City, for example, more often than not, regardless of the opposition they are motivated to win. You never know what you are getting with Villa. And this isn’t just a Gerrard issue because this was the case under Dean Smith and maybe even Steve Bruce. How many times have we heard the manager say, they don’t understand the performance following the training and the build-up?
- Steven Gerrard. I am 100% on the fence with Gerrard. I wasn’t sure if he was the right appointment and I am still unsure. That doesn’t mean I believe he should be sacked, he needs time. We have seen positives and negatives during his time as manager and what he says regarding the playing squad, is what many fans would also agree with.
Aston Villa v Tottenham Hotspur
Villa Park, Birmingham
Saturday, 9th April – 17.30 (GMT)