With all three points in the bag, it was nice to see Villa fans with smiles on their faces. It was no easy victory but it was vital that the boys in claret and blue managed to get the win.
For much of the match, Villa and Cardiff played scrappy football and you could feel the frustration that hung over Villa Park like a bad smell. Libor Kozak again looked slow and I even heard someone behind me in the Trinity Road stand refer to him as “Peter Crouch gone wrong!”
Boos rang out around the stadium at half time and I personally felt fed up following another painful forty-five minutes of football. However, it was a shame yesterday to see and hear fans booing the team off a half time, as no matter how frustrated or angry we get, it is always important to stay behind the team. I urge the fans to get behind the boys in claret and blue through good times and bad, especially at home.
After thirty minutes of the second half, another wonder free-kick from Leandro Bacuna saw Villa Park erupted! The relief at having scored a goal was evident in the players’ celebrations.
A header from Libor Kozak made it 2-0 and all three points were clearly Villa’s.
Looking at the score line, it might be tempting to think that the Villans played really well but, at times, they looked poor and caused an average Cardiff side no problems for considerable portions of the game. It was clear that the team missed Delph as our midfield looked clueless all afternoon, lacking the pace and pressing that he brings to the team. We were also without Agbonlahor, who was also missed; Kozak is slow, not reaching Benteke’s headed flicks, unlike Agbonlahor, who would be straight on the end of them. The player whose absence had the least impact was Andreas Weimann, who has had a rocky season so far. I believe that being out of the team for a few weeks, even though it’s due to injury, will do the young lad some good and I live in hope that he will come back with the same desire to impress as he had last season.
The one shock decision made by Lambert yesterday was to leave Lowton out. He must not be performing in training as he seems to be out of favour with Lambert this season. Last season, Lowton was one of our best players, arguably just behind Benteke, and it is a worrying sign for Villa fans that he is not starting matches. Let’s hope he doesn’t turn into Albrighton, who did little to impress after his first season playing regular first team football. I would have played Lowton instead of Clark, although Clark had a decent game at the back and the Villans were able to keep a clean sheet.
The most important aspect of yesterday’s game was the result. Bacuna and Kozak were able to get themselves on the score sheet and Guzan and the defenders played a part in keeping another clean sheet. As fans, we can’t really ask for much more but I feel we still have the quality to produce much better performances than we have been of late.
I am very happy with the result yesterday and it is good to be back to winning ways. Here’s hoping we can build on the win and find some form, making supporting Villa less stressful.