A thick mist of frustration hangs over Villa Park today: after another loss at home leaves, it appears this great stadium does not possess the fear factor – at least for visitors.
I woke up this morning at a loss as to what to make of Villa at the moment. Already, only nine games in, the Villans have taken fans on a rollercoaster ride, through amazing ups and depressing drops. Like many fans, I feel we are spiralling in a never-ending circle, making it unclear what sort of performance we will see on any given week. Exciting? It’s more frustrating in my eyes and betting on the Villa is any man’s game at the moment with performances being so unpredictable.
Yesterday, again, we saw strong performances from Delph and Nathan Baker which were promising. However, on the flip side, Benteke missing a penalty and Weimann missing chances that should have had us three up at half time baffles me. Even in a poor team last year these two players stood out, constantly causing defenders problem. Now, I am not saying Benteke has had a terrible season so far because I’d be lying. He has again shown why he is such a quality player and one we need in our team, getting on the score sheet four times this season even with an injury causing him to miss two games. Weimann has received mixed reviews so far this season and, in my opinion, is a shadow of the player he was last season. He still seems to be putting in the effort but his finishing and connecting play has been below par. If chances had been taken yesterday we would have been comfortable winners.
As a squad we seem to be stronger than last season and we are definitely tighter at the back, which is making a massive difference to the scores and, most importantly, our goal difference. However, in the last three games we have been unable to score and, given our strike force, that is shocking. Lambert brought in two more strikers in the summer to bolster our attacking options so failing to finish our chances is worrying. After a good performance against Manchester City, Kozak looked like a good signing but we have seen little more from the big man since. Helenius has had very little time on the pitch in which to impress but, from what I have seen, he looks average at best.
It’s clear the frustration is running high in Villa fans’ blood at the moment as they question how we can have such good performances some weeks and fail to deliver other weeks. Yesterday, we may have been the better team but in the end getting the points is all that matters. Is Lambert getting the formation right at home? Were we just lucky against Manchester City?
My mind is filled with questions, many of which can’t be answered because of the inconsistency of the boys in claret and blue at the moment.
Our home form is becoming a worry as most teams in the league rely on their home grounds being fortresses.
With West Ham to play next week, I feel the game could go either way. Being a Villa fan makes for a stressful life!