Villa Next Up
Things look somewhat quiet and subdued on VMC just now. I was expecting to be celebrating our push for the Champions League by now but our measly haul of 1 point from 2 games where most of us thought there might be 4 and Spurs 2 good results before the penalty gods looked down on the Delias seems to have pushed them into to driving seat.
But it is still in City's hands....or not as the case may be. I have been critical of Given's authority in an around the six yard box and it is fair shout as discussed elsewhere in the media that he might have become a little complacent having no competition for his place, but boy do we need his experience as we go into our 3 Cup Finals seeking a haul of 9 points.
Gunnar Nielsen is a smashing young man and I remember him approaching Kevin Hitchcock when we playerd EB Streymur at Barnsley. He clearly had ambition and was clearly looking in on what City is looking to achieve but believe me it is long way from Torshavn to Eastlands in terms of football.
On the one hand it could be contemplated that he is an international goalkeeper but on the other the gallant friendly people of the Faroe Islands are really only the whipping boys if they get into any of the top competitions, so even on international duty Gunnar's afternoons are often long and hard. And he probably wouldn't be used to the sheer speed of the game at Premier League level let alone the ferocity of shots on goal and the challenges offered by the likes of Crouch and Carew.
We have been linked with Marton Fulop from Sunderland, a gigantic Hungarian, 26, who may be robust enough to help us through. But would not the ideal situation would be the return of Joe Hart? Would it not be ironic if Joe came back, had 3 stormers of the type he has put in for Birmingham, carried us into the Champions League and carried himself to South Africa.....are we allowed to have these dreams?
So, Roberto - can we keep Villa out? More importantly, who is going to keep them out?
They too score late goals, often from the spot and often in 'lookey-lookey man watch time' so we will have to beware and work hard to the end. Villa can be beaten if we get on top of them early, get amongst the goals and open them up. In Friedel they have one of my favoutire goalkeepers and it fit we know Dunne will probably have the game of his life, but we should be able to contend with them in midfield and we have a much better strike force ...oh and please bring Nedum back for this one. We will need his pace out wide.
It looks like another nervous few days at Eastlands. A draw would be a poor result for both teams so we can expect an attacking extravaganza, especially from the boys in blue!!