The first home game of the 22/23 season awaits! After a disappointing start to the new campaign against Bournemouth the Villa fans have a high expectation of improvement ahead of Everton.
A devastating performance against Bournemouth, Gerrard will hope to have the Villa Faithful behind the team back on home turf. That's if the fans can actually get there... Due to the recent tube strikes, there will be no trains running towards the stadium, which will ensure that VP will be a struggle for the fans to get to. This could possibly leave empty seats inside Villa Park, making it hard to create any sort of atmosphere. Fans believe the club should be doing more the guarantee their arrival at the ground. Hopefully the fans can make some alternative route to the ground. With Villa Park's atmosphere not being up to the standards as usual last year, the players probably need their backing on Saturday. The issues travel wise will probably leave a huge impact on the first 10 minutes of the game, and may leave Villa fans with less patience than they initially had.
Gerrards' selection headache
Steven has a tough call to make over his Starting XI, with his recent comments in the Press about Ex-captain Tyrone Mings:
"When Tyrone is back at his best and looks me in the eye and shows that he's ready to play, he'll get opportunities."
It's a tough stance from the Gaffer, with his 'no nonsense' attitude, but if it works, then we will be an unstoppable force. Me personally, believes that Gerrard is being harsh on Tyrone who didn't seem to put a foot wrong in Pre-Season, and as we all clearly saw on Saturday his booming voice was missed out on the pitch. Overall, I just felt the game was flat with no real chances really being created. We was too slow on the ball, there was no drive with any of the players, and we were passing backwards in dangerous positions way too often. I believe we lost possession 156 times in the game. It simply has to be a smoother and faster running game, with Villa controlling the majority of the game, but this time actually doing something with it!
Hopefully we will all see the communication issue resolved as Mings is set to START against Everton!
I would also like to touch on Fans concerns about the debate over Buendia and Phillipe Coutinho; I believe that they both CAN play together and if any manager can find a way to make the system with them in it work, it's Gerrard. We all know the qualities of both these players, and when they are on their day then they are just unstoppable. But the issue has always been that they cannot play together, I think that we could slot Coutinho on the Left-Wing with Buendia in the No.10 role and they can both express themselves to the best of their abilities. However if Gerrard decides to go with a 4-3-3 formation, I don't see why Buendia can't slot into the left hand No.8 role. His work rate and desire, will be enough defensively whilst we all know how good his creative ability is... Let us see this Stevie!
Also, fans have been complaining about Gerrard having 'favourites' in the side, where this may be true but we all know when it comes to a gameday, he is not afraid to pull that player off the pitch.
Now to save me from writing this part of the Article, we have brought in an Everton fan, who will give his say ahead of the game...
Team News - Everton have a recognised striker in Salomón Rondon back available after serving his 3 match suspension. It’s likely he’ll come back in and Gray will drop to the bench. Conor Coady signed on Monday night, he’s match available and expected to start. Amadou Onana, is available, but I think it’s too soon for a premier league start, expect to see him come on. Everton have had a relatively positive transfer window, bringing in two reliable, solid centre backs in Tarkowski and Coady.
We strengthened on the wing, signing Dwight McNeil for a low upfront fee, Onana will be exciting however he can’t be rushed too soon. Now being heavily linked with a return for Idrissa Gueye, while also being linked with Serhou Guirassy and Che Adams.
Lampard has had a decent time at Goodison Park, he has a lot of Everton fans United behind him, however we were poor on the road last season, which needs to improve this year to try and avoid another relegation scrap. I think it will be a close game, which could go either way, but I’ll sit on the fence for a score draw, 1-1.
Now from my personal point of view, I can see Gerrard sticking with his favoured 4-3-3 formation, with the Full-Backs pushing high. Gerrard has said in his Presser earlier on in the day, that both Tyrone Mings and Emi Buendia are officially available for selection again. Now I can see Tyrone coming back into the side, purely for the communication skills that so clearly lacked last weekend. However, I still believe that he will drop Emi and give Coutinho another chance to prove himself!
Cash, Carlos, Mings, Digne,
Mcginn, Kamara, Luiz,
Bailey, Watkins, Coutinho,
With the quality we have in that squad, I simply do not see how we can lose this game. If it comes 2:15PM tomorrow afternoon and we have lost the game, I can see an absolute meltdown from Villa fans all over.
All I say, is that it is early in the season and we have plenty of time to turn things around, GIVE. GERRARD. TIME.
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Written by Kian Davies.