Today is the first day I've actually despised being a football blogger.
Even through crisis, even through early early games, I've loved this job of writing about footy. But then there are days like today. Days in which you have to drag yourself out of bed at just a few minutes after 5am, even through you're feeling quite ill. Days when all you want is to go back to sleep--before your team is even down by one goal.
And then your Villa get hammered. Absolutely thrashed. And you go back to sleep at 3-0 because maybe, maybe it will all just be a nightmare, except with the internet these days you can't pretend it's a nightmare because you get up and are immediately confronted with 6-0! 6-0! 6-0! from every possible source.
I've tried my best to be positive about this team in the last few weeks, but I think now it's time to go back to my old cynical self, the one that dreads the games even against the Newcastles of the world. Because, for just a tiny bit of bad luck and some interesting choices, even freshly promoted sides can roll right over a team.
From what I saw in the first thirty minutes, this team didn't look much like the Villa that took to the pitch for the last two games. Marc Albrighton was absolutely crap. Stewart Downing kept giving the ball away. Even Brad Friedel was making some poor goalkeeping decisions. Only Ashley Young seemed to remember how to play football--and after his goal was (wrongly) disallowed, he went into an Ash-sulk.
But what on earth was Villa doing playing a straight 4-4-2? Does Kevin MacDonald not read this website? Look, buddy, I'm aware that you are dealing with injuries to crucial players of the squad. But you should know Stephen Ireland can't compensate for James Milner in midfield. And Emile Heskey on the wing? Don't we have twenty wingers?
I hope Randy Lerner has a few numbers he's dialing today, because I'm pretty sure MacD just proved he's not the manager for Villa.