Villa 1-0 Fulham

Bugger. I suppose we didn’t really deserve much, but nevertheless, it’s always a shame to lose in injury time, and especially from a mistake.  In this case Mark Schwarzer parried a drive from the edge of the area straight back towards the penalty spot, and Andreas Wiemann bundled home after two attempts (the first miraculously saved by Schwarzer).  It was the sort of odd goal that you expect to see disallowed for some kind of infringement, offside perhaps, but the scoreboard flicked to 1-0 and that was all that.

A strange performance, in which nothing particularly happened. Pogrebnyak ended his goal run and really was a bit isolated, Clint Dempsey and Damien Duff not really supporting enough, Moussa Dembele failing to run the game as he has been lately. In short, our big players didn’t play up to recent standards, and frankly we needed them to.

Duff might have settled the match sooner, a left footed smash on the run flipping off the post and going wide.  Rats. Near misses here and there, but Villa’s organisation was hard to break down. So….. I don’t know.  Games like this happen, and especially at Villa Park, so let’s move on.

12 thoughts on “Villa 1-0 Fulham

  1. What a bummer. On the replay, it looked like the ball rose more than Schwarzer expected, so he had to bring his hands up at the last second. Give it to Villa — they were flying all over the field today.

    We were offensively anemic but I thought the midfield looked solid (in the second half at least, which was all I saw — it sounds like the first half may have been different). Diarra looked very solid and I actually thought Ruiz was doing a bit more to help coming back than he has in the past.

    Kelly looked vulnerable at right back.

  2. A shame and a wasted opportunity, but this one didn’t really leave a bad taste in my mouth. It was a tough team away and Fulham showed signs of picking up their away form. I don’t have much to complain about except Stephen Kelly looked totally outmatched just about the entire game. Was Hughes injured/sick? Would’ve been nice to see Kelly subbed out earlier.

    Once again, I was pleased with Diarra’s performance. He had a few careless passes that almost resulted in turnovers, but overall I felt he had a strong game. Villa absolutely dominated midfield in the first half, but Diarra stabilized things for the remainder. Lovely ball control, awareness, and several simple but clever passes that created Fulham counter attacks. He’s also creative defensively, using unpredictable passes to relieve pressure. An excellent addition to the squad. Really hoping Fulham keeps him around.

    Ruiz looked good, if maybe a little undisciplined positionally. Some decent set up play and important defensive tackles. I’m something of a Ruiz skeptic, so this game made me a little more optimistic about the signing.

    A tough game but easy enough to shrug off. Bring on next week.

  3. Yes, Diarra was the bright spot. Other than that, not much. Dembele must have been starting to believe his own publicity – might have been his worst match for Fulham – losing the ball, running into blind alleys again. Danny was also poor. But what do we expect away from home. Teams will press us, and harry us, and cajole us. We need to be able to deal with it.

    1. Dembele was fouled out of the match today. He took atleast four bookable fouls before the ref handed out a booking, which I am sure affected his game.

      1. Well that’s the Premier League. If he’s going to be ranked up there as a top player, he’s going to get that type of attention. Not only did he lose the ball in tackles, but also in his attempts at going forward.

  4. Just got back from the game, a draw would have been a fair result. Shame we couldn’t get a goal as the Villa fans are on the verge of a nervous breakdown over Mcleish, had we got one the crowd and the team would have gone into meltdown . Hey ho, at least I saw Diarra show some magic again. Agree about Kelly, he looked in trouble today.

    1. Kelly wasn’t supposed to be fit to play so he should be cut some slack.

      Read Jol’s Full Time article and this was an object lesson in why we find it tough away from home. In the first half Villa came at us strongly and stopped us playing our game.

      We need to be better at dealing with that but I felt we defended well and mostly controlled Villa. This was a game where we might have nicked a win and were unlucky not to hold out for the draw.

      1. Superb piece wasn’t it? First time we’ve had a clear indication of Jol’s vision and the clubs future plans. Sounds like he knows what he is doing and its assuring that he is able to identify a reason for our poor away performances. Gives the team something to work on for next season. Partly why I wasn’t unhappy with yesterdays result.

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