Pre-Match View From Aston Villa

“It has been 12 years since we last beat Sheffield United at Villa Park. We have played them twice since that 3-0 win in 2007 (prior to which, we had greeted our returning European Cup winners 25 years after they were crowned Champions of Europe). We lost 1-2 in a 2014 FA Cup tie and then drew 2-2 last season having been 2-0 up within the first 10 minutes. Overall we have won 59 and drawn 30 of the 125 league games between the two clubs. The Blades are founder members of the Football League and have been champions once in 1897-98. They have won the FA Cup 4 times in 1899, 1902, 1915 and in 1925. They have been outside of the top flight since 2007 and were in League One from 2011 until 2017. They are currently 11 points above us and a point nearer to the automatic promotion places (3) than we are to the play off spots (4). We really need to win this one, if only as pay back for the embarrassing 1-4 defeat we suffered at Bramall Lane 4 months ago. A win would see them on top of the league at the end of the game. A win for us would see us move within a point of sixth place.  Let’s make it a comfortable win and another clean sheet for us, so that we can begin the weekend in style and with a wide smile.”

“Sheffield United haven’t won an away game since New Years Day – enter Aston Villa”

“Think we will lose this one.Sheffield United is a good team”

“Sheffield United are gonna do us in next game”

“Only hope is we up our game against the better sides because we have certainly blown a decent chance with our form over the last 2 months to get ourselves in a strong position, not picking up anywhere near enough points from a kind run of games. Need to try something different, would love Keinan to start to give SheffYoo something unexpected to think about. Another draw if we’re lucky”

“not really looking forward to it tbh as I think we will lose. We couldn’t even break down a woeful reading team don’t see how we can sheffield united? If grealish is back then it might boost the place but I don’t think he will be back”

“Since the false dawn of those fantastic results at ‘Boro and Derby we’ve played 11 games and scraped 2 wins during a fairly kind run of fixtures. If we perform like we have since ‘Boro you’d expect us to lose this one. “

“Grealish is back soon and we’re a totally different team with him in the side. Still don’t think we’ll have enough this season, but there we are.”

“If Jack plays we win if he doesn’t may as well toss a coin”

“The next 2 games are against physical sides and both need beating–but my one fear is if Jack makes a much much needed return he could well get crocked again—referees and  also our own players need to protect the lad.”

“They are direct but not in a long ball sense. They play good football but are also very in your face”

“They go top with a win. Quite the motivation. Be nice to see us try to pass the ball. Grealish to come off the bench and get clattered at least once. “

“Interesting game this – there’s a sort of meh around the whole place, season drifting into nothingness, nowt to play for, nowt to get excited about. We’re not far off the playoffs points-wise but we’re not looking like we’re going to challenge for them, it’s all a bit waiting for 2019-20. But. Win this and I think you might get a bit of buzz back, Sheffield United are good and we know it, if we can beat them, not only does it keep us within touching distance of the top six, but it might give the place a little bit of spark. A big win could set the season on fire and any kind of win will blow though the embers and provide a bit of warmth.”

“Fortunately, Sheff U rarely draw. While we are approaching half our games drawn. I so hate draws. Amazing to think Sheff U go top by beating us, having lost more games than us this season. Salute to not drawing football matches.”

“I hope we win this one but I’d love it if these lot went up via autos over Leeds and West brom”

“We’ll need to play well. Sheff Utd are a decent outfit, well managed by Chris Wilder and we owe them one after the pathetic display up there earlier in the season!”

“Hopefully this will be the game we turn up, motivated to go and press and move the ball quicker.
If not they will turn us over – Wilder got them well tuned in most games.
Still waiting Villa, a lot of talk but little action.”

“Wilder for me is one of the best managers in the league. I rate him highly.”

“Wilder dont say a lot he just gets on with his job  –and he loves Sheffield Utd” “Bloody amazing that a team only promoted last season is giving cause for concern. Their management has done a great job on them.”

“Wilder has got them well tuned, but come May he has had three years to get them there , so early days yet for Smith. ”

“Wilder won League 1 by some distance in his first season with Sheffield Utd, 2nd season top half finish in this league and now challenging for automatic promotion. He’s won promotion with 2 different clubs before that as well. I’m sorry but Deano looks a long way off matching that sort of record. I personally think Wilder is a far better Manager”

“Like Wilder very much,gives very sensible interviews doesnt slag off the opposition and has got Sheffield playing some decent stuff.”

“What I dont understand is that when Smith first came the high pressing and trying to win the ball back were an obvious improvement in our game, and then it just stopped. Are we not fit enough to play it or have some of the older players and those that dont see it as their job making life difficult for the gaffer.”

“Yeah, the first half-dozen or so games were like a breath of fresh air, and gradually we have reverted to type and stroll around with all the zip and enthusiasm of a testimonial match, just like the Bruce days.”

“I actually see a Steve Bruce parallel. Unfortunately.  The only exception is we played some decent football for half a dozen games when Dean Smith arrived, defence excepted.  At the end of the first Steve Bruce season 50 % of us thought his tactics and ability to motivate players at a club our size was very questionable.  Seems to be going same way”

“I feel positive about this, defence is hopefully gonna stay solid and build from there. I know we have been poor lately but if we can continue to look safe at the back we can turn this corner.”

“Defies all logic, but I have a good feeling about this one.”

“Big crowd, under the lights, if we’re up for it we can blow them away, Jack or no Jack.”

“Predicting a 3-2 win following a surprise super-sub return by Jack. Shef U to go 2-0 up only to collapse following an accidental face stamp on their goalie by merciless Mings.”

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