Opposition view: Aston Villa

By Ric Turner, Thu 26 September 2013 10:32

Opposition view: Aston VillaStuart Young from avillafan.com gives us the lowdown on the opposition ahead of Saturday's game at Villa Park

What are your expectations for this season?

Progression has to be the ultimate aim for us. A season without looking over our shoulder and having to worry about relegation.

Mid table finish of around 8th-12th would be great.

Are you happy with the manager?

The Villa faithful are becoming quite split on this.

I like many of them am unsure. I have brought into what he is trying to achieve at the club but some of his tactical decisions make me question him.

Then you have your transfers - Villa needed players who would make improvements on last season and the team we had - but we got more squad players.

I guess the verdict is well and truly still out there but time will tell.

Who are your key players?

Christian Benteke - without doubt is our best and key player so it is a major blow that he will be out for upto 6 weeks.

Jores Okore looked to be another but again injury has became an issue.

So Brad Guzan - is a vital part of our team especially with our unpredictable back four and Fabian Delph is really starting to live up to the early promise.

Were you happy with the business conducted during the transfer window?

I think I have covered this already but as I already stated I felt we needed players to improve the starting line up - not challenge the existing eleven.

We did do our business early on which was a good side to it, and we really needed a playmaker/no.10 type player who can pick out that killer ball when nothing is going right for us.

Are there any rising stars in the squad that we might not have heard of?

Jack Grealish has just recently joined Notts County on a loan and he put in a MOTM performance on his debut and guided them to there first victory of the season.

Many Villa fans wanted to see him in and around the first team this season but Lambert believes he needs to experience first team football at a lower level first to help him make the step up. We have had so many young lads who have failed to make the step up so hopefully this approach will really help him progress as a player.

Your Achilles heel?

The back four - very unpredictable. We are our own worst nightmare.

If you could have any City player in your team who would you choose?

Oh dear lol! All of them?? As we need someone who can create something out of nothing I would have to say David Silva!

What is your perception of City as a club?

It's a difficult this one is. City have got what everyone wants - money and lots of it.

I'm a traditionalist and would love my club to win the trophies by building something from scratch and not 'buying the trophies' but that said if we could be in your situation I wouldn't turn it down. I am so desperate to see Aston Villa become a successful football club!

Likely starting XI for the game, and score prediction?

I don't like to predict scores so all I will say is avoiding defeat would be a great result.

Team prediction (4-3-3/4-5-1): Guzan; Bacuna, Vlaar, Clark, Luna; Delph, Westwood, Sylla; Weimann, Agbonlahor, Kozak.