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Aston Villa Life

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The Only Way Now Is Up. Isn’t It? 

26 Jul 17

Well, is this the season when we will see the Villa Pheonix rise out of what were truly ashes? Will this be the end of nearly 20 years of developing misery for Villa supporters, punctuated only by the false dawn and excitement with the appearance…

Villa’s Cup Runneth Over: The Good, Bad & Ugly 

23 Jul 17

Not really sure where they got the name for this little competition, maybe it has a bit better ring to it in German, but it’s an interesting format, and given that substitutions usually make for two sides playing a full 90 anyway, I thought…

Villa Getting Older…But Better? 

20 Jul 17

I was going to belatedly opine about the Walsall match—in brief, why would anyone expect anything but a bore draw when playing 4-5-1 with Gabby as your 1—but events, as they often do, supersede the best-laid plans.

Shrewsbury-Aston Villa Match Thread 

15 Jul 17

Right, here we go, Terry’s first appearance in claret and blue, Veretout starting, and Johnstone back in goal.

Do the Numbers Add Up Yet? 

9 Jul 17

So Villa are coming back from Portugal.

Signing-off On A Great 50 Years 

7 Jul 17

And, lastly, here’s a transcript of an article by one of Villa’s fine foot-soldiers of the 1920s, Arthur Dorrell, Villa’s left-winger and son of a former Villa player of the 1890s.

Interviewing Fred Rinder 

30 Jun 17

The following is a transcript of an interview of the then Villa chairman Fred Rinder, in the week preceding the 1924 Cup Final, by a senior member of the Athletic News, a foremost journal of that time which existed until 1930.

McGregor’s Tales Of Villa On Tour In Scotland 

24 Jun 17

This week’s article is of lighter vein! The following is another article written in 1902 by William McGregor, in which he tells various tales of his times on tour with the Villa in Scotland during the 1880s.

John Terry: Finally the Right Kind of Villan? 

21 Jun 17

Well, the rumor mill is in full spin now, and naturally, the big preoccupation out there for looming incomings concerns one John Terry, a man not necessarily beloved by Villans.

William McGregor On The Need To Practise 

17 Jun 17

The following is a substantial extract from an article written in 1902 by William McGregor, the ‘Father of the League’: the founder of league football.

Howard Spencer on Method (Part Two) 

11 Jun 17

The following is the second and final part of an article written around 1905 to 1907 by Howard Spencer, who was the Villa captain between 1902 and 1907, in-between John Devey and Joe Bache.

Bring It In for a Hug, Guys 

8 Jun 17

So we’re still in click-bait limbo before the window opens and new kit leaks have been making the rounds.

Howard Spencer on Method (Part One) 

3 Jun 17

The following is the first part of an article written around 1905 to 1907 by Howard Spencer, who was the Villa captain between 1902 and 1907, in-between John Devey and Joe Bache.

Times Remembered 

27 May 17

I am in the act of writing a book on the Villa that has called upon a great deal of newspaper research on-line, and the downloading of many articles in their pristine state, requiring scanning and processing through Optical Character Recognition…

The Art Of Captaincy 

22 May 17

I am in the act of writing a book on the Villa that has called upon a great deal of newspaper research on-line, and the downloading of many articles in their pristine state, requiring scanning and processing through Optical Character Recognition…

Villa’s Summer of Truth Is Upon Us 

18 May 17

Tony Xia talking recently about financial considerations, FFP, and a team coming together rather than throwing indiscriminate sums around in search of a solution can’t help but make a person recall the broad optimism that greeted Randy Lerner…

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Aston Villa 1-1 Brighton and Hove Albion 

9 May 17

Aston Villa sent Newcastle down once, and now they’ve helped Newcastle to a championship by digging in a man down to claw back a well-deserved 1-1 draw against league-leading Brighton and Hove Albion.

Do Villa Have Anything to Say Today? 

7 May 17

So here we are.

Is Steve Bruce In Over His Head? 

4 May 17

The headline might seem a bit of a wind-up.

The Memories Of A Remarkable Villa Fan 

2 May 17

I have the pleasure of knowing John Flanner, a remarkable Villa fan.

Match Preview: Blackburn Rovers vs. Aston Villa 

28 Apr 17

This week we take on another relegation-threatened side in Blackburn Rovers, currently sitting 22nd on 45 points, two behind Small Heath.

The Return Of The Cult Hero? 

26 Apr 17

Where once alchemy was regarded as the means towards the creation of gold, the invention of football generated a new means of obtaining gold: the football hero! Yes, for one game at least, Gabby has achieved cult status with his near-cameo…

Some Wins Are Bigger Than Others: Aston Villa 1-0 Small Heath 

24 Apr 17

A happy day at Villa Park, Sunday, as Villa, and Gabby yet again, put one over on Small Health Alliance, giving the supporters a measure of satisfaction and joy you can’t really get from any other single fixture.

Aston Villa vs. The Clowns: Match Preview 

22 Apr 17

It’s time for the Second City derby, and I’m not sure there’s much to say about this one.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Bumper 3-1 Loss Edition! 

18 Apr 17

Aston Villa slumped to a 1-3 defeat at home against Reading on Saturday, and it didn’t make for great listening—I was left a bit despondent.

Match Preview: Aston Villa vs. Reading 

15 Apr 17

Following last weekend’s draw to Burton Albion, Villa now face two sides above them in the table in quick succession: Reading at home on Saturday and Fulham away on Tuesday.

There’s Always Tomorrow! 

12 Apr 17

In these days of gnashing of teeth and of wondering when Villa’s next triumphs are going to arrive (if ever!), I’ve been thinking back to days of yore when Villa fans of the time were wondering the same thing.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Burton Albion 1-1 Aston Villa 

11 Apr 17

Dreams come and then they go.

Can Villa Close the Gap to Six? 

8 Apr 17

Today Villa travel to the Pirelli stadium to take on Burton Albion.

Aston Villa 1-0 QPR: Post-match Thoughts 

5 Apr 17

I think we’re all left scratching our heads a little bit after Villa ground out a 1-0 win against visiting Queens Park Rangers Tuesday night.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Aston Villa 2-0 Norwich City 

3 Apr 17

Well, another game, another three points, and this time it was visiting Norwich that found themselves on the wrong end of a 2-0 verdict.

Villa’s Promotion Bid? Maybe not so crazy. 

1 Apr 17

So, the international break, no pun intended, has come and gone.

Management And Coaching At Aston Villa. Part Four: Since Ellis’s Return. 

28 Mar 17

Ellis’s return to the Villa board, and as chairman, was perhaps fortuitous, yet his old sense of opportunism had been at work to make the timely move.

Management And Coaching At Aston Villa. Part Three: The Ellis Era 

27 Mar 17

In the autumn of 1966, the Board had rejected a shareholders’ offer for putting the club back on its feet and then resisted attempts by the Shareholders’ Association to install their own directors.

Management And Coaching At Aston Villa. Part Two: Hogan’s Legacy 

25 Mar 17

Fred Rinder had passed away at Christmas, 1938, and with he gone, and Hogan’s successful period at Villa coming to an end with world war arriving in 1939 (actually it is reputed that he was sacked as he lay in hospital with appendicitis…

Management And Coaching At Aston Villa. Part One: The Old Days 

22 Mar 17

There was a time when issues of coaching and management were not a main topic of conversation amongst fans, when the topic was simply about why had there not been more teamwork.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Wigan Atheltic 0-2 Aston Villa 

20 Mar 17

You always had to expect Wigan to put up a fight.

Can Villa Put the Sword to Struggling Latics? 

18 Mar 17

Aston Villa travel to the DW Stadium today to take on Wigan Athletic, who currently are 23rd, and seven points adrift from safety.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Aston Villa 2–0 Sheffield Wednesday 

14 Mar 17

Saturday the Villans took on another promotion contender in Sheffield Wednesday, and bounced back from the 1-0 defeat to Huddersfield Town earlier in the week with a 2-0 win.

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly: Huddersfield Town 1–0 Aston Villa 

9 Mar 17

Aston Villa came up against a very good side Tuesday night when they traveled to John Smith’s Stadium.

Can Villa Make it Four? 

7 Mar 17

This evening, Villa travel to John Smith’s Stadium to take on third-placed Huddersfield Town.

Villa Making Very Hard Work of It 

26 Feb 17

Villa’s torrid run of results finally ended with a 1-0 win against visiting Derby, but if the product on offer left you cold, you wouldn’t be alone.

Watch Out Clark; The Villans Are Coming! 

16 Feb 17

Well, there’s a to-do.

Do We Have 11 Players, Or Do We Have A Team? 

11 Feb 17

The Express and Star reports: A total of five new players were expected to make their home debuts against Ipswich, including striker Scott Hogan who joined on deadline day from Brentford for £12million.

Steamer’s Final Event 

10 Feb 17

Quite incredible.

The Season’s Over Then? 

4 Feb 17

The end of the world has come it would seem: gloom, gloom, yet more gloom! Yet any gloom usually turns to light, so I am assuming we are going to see light – and plenty of it – when matters sort themselves out.

All Shoulders To The Pump, Now… 

28 Jan 17

Well, this has been a 10-day period of transfer action … and some action at that.

Will Preston Bring An ‘End’ To The Strike Dilemma? 

19 Jan 17

We are well into the third week of the transfer ‘window’, and still there’s no sign of reinforcements arriving.

RIP Gary Haddon AKA Steamer – Holte Ender in the Sky 

17 Jan 17

Regular readers of the blog’s comments will know by now that Steamer, aka Gary Haddon, has passed away.

Graham Taylor, R.I.P – Twice Villa Manager 

12 Jan 17

While he was associated with Aston Villa (and, indeed, with Watford) I shall always remember the jovial face and well-meaning demeanour.

Something’s A-brewing On Boxing Day 

23 Dec 16

Our sparring partners for the Boxing Day fixture happens to be a club that we have never before met in the league: Burton Albion.

When Necessity Raises Its Head… 

15 Dec 16

The honeymoon with Brucie went pop on that night at Leeds.

Grealish’s Late Winner Nets Villa Victory 

10 Dec 16

A week after losing a game Villa shouldn’t have, Jack Grealish scored a cracker in the 88th minute to salvage a frustrating afternoon against relegation-zone Wigan and get Villa back to winning ways, 1-0.

Villa Have No Intention Of Being Led By Leeds! 

30 Nov 16

I have no doubt that Leeds is a wonderful city, but why is it that over the last 100 years the city has been associated with more football irregularities than any other place? It’s about that length of time ago that the Leeds City club…

Bluebird Pie For Dinner This Saturday? 

23 Nov 16

Cardiff are up ‘ere on Saturday.

Seagulls, Crabs … It All Sounds A Bit Fishy! 

15 Nov 16

It’s always worthwhile to take a trip to Brighton.

Kodjia Brace Extends Villa Revival 

5 Nov 16

After a turgid opening half, Aston Villa finally came to life when Blackburn Rovers broke through early in the second to break a 0-0 deadlock and put the home side on notice.

Blackburn’s a-Rovin’ to Villa Park! Will it be their ru-i-in? 

2 Nov 16

Two great clubs from a different era meet this week-end, and since the Villa are playing Blackburn, it could be that Rudi is licking his lips! We’ve won 65, drawn 33 and lost 58 of our 156 previous encounters, and the last two home encounters…

Two on the Trot…Who Would’ve Thought? 

23 Oct 16

Well, it’s been a record-breaking week for Aston Villa: first away win in 437 days, first back-to-back wins in 17 months.

We Won! 

19 Oct 16

An away win at last.