By Christopher Boulay
I haven’t posted in a couple weeks… I wanted to wait a bit to see what Villa looked like under new manager Gerard Houllier.
Houllier was hired on September, 8. When I saw this, I originally laughed at the idea, mainly because when at Liverpool, Houllier was underwhelming, at best. Yes, the man won trophies, but he had a really good squad that he couldn’t win the big prize – the Premier League with.
But after thinking these past few days, Houllier may not have been a bad choice. Possibly, even a good choice, as he does bring a winning attitude to Villa that was certainly lacking under Kevin MacDonald.
So let’s take a look at Villa’s Premier League situation so far.
The Villains currently sit in eighth, with seven points from five matches. They most recently drew Bolton 1-1 on the weekend. Not a great draw, but with all of the problems that have found Villa lately, any points are important. Next up is a match with Wolves on Sunday. This could be a massive chance for Houllier to get his new boys off on the right foot. A draw here isn’t terrible, but a win will certainly get the troops motivated.
Houllier was on the sidelines for the first time today, when Villa triumphed over Blackburn in the Carling Cup, by a score of 3-1. A crutch from Ashley Young (photo) put the Villains over the top and into the next round, unlike Premier League rivals Liverpool, Manchester City, Tottenham and Everton – all clubs that hung around Villa’s part of the table most of last season. Emile Heskey canceled out Gael Givet’s strike for Blackburn, before Young turned up the awesome and steered his boys to victory.
This should be a big confidence boost for Villa. The Carling Cup may be considered to be a weaker competition by many, but this is the perfect place for Villa to build some confidence and put their right foot forward in the wake of Martin O’Neill.
It is still early, but Villa’s supporters should be breathing a bit easier tonight. They deserve it.