“One year, visiting the Motor Show at the NEC, a Villa fan walked up to me and spat in my face for no other reason except that I played for Birmingham”, Savage is quoted as saying by the Mirror. “We’re going to fight to get ourselves out of it”.
“We haven’t had the rub of the green this season and we haven’t got what we’ve deserved”, he said. It’s an opportunity to send our fans home happy.
As for Villa, they’d managed an average of one goal per game in their last five league outings, and have Scott Sinclair and Rudy Gestede to thank for three of those goals. Gestede is in line to make his starting debut against Birmingham and is the 6/4 favourite to score anytime via bet365.
Villa were jeered off following Saturday’s 1-0 home defeat to West Brom which left them with just four points from their opening six games and Sherwood admitted he knows the fans expect better.
However, we’ve come across a website called howlongsinceastonvillawonatrophy.com which displays a timer comparing how long it’s been since Villa and the Blues each won a trophy.
He said, “I think anyone who knows me knows that I’m probably at my strongest when I’m under pressure”. A third straight derby defeat would deepen concerns but, in fairness to Sherwood, there are mitigating factors.
Sherwood is keen to stress to the newer players in his squad how important the game is and is expecting a fierce battle.
As for replacing his leadership, the Villa manager acknowledged that “Fabian Delph was the biggest character we had”, yet argued he still had “big enough characters”, citing Ashley Westwood, Ciaran Clark and new defenders Joleon Lescott and Micah Richards.
“The players need to be courageous to receive the ball”. His team look very organised. It’s not just a normal game.
“We’ve got nothing to fear”, said Rowett.
“That’s part and parcel of the job, but it’s awful when you can’t get on to that field and do something about it. I look the players in the eye and I know that they’re bitterly disappointed with our points return but equally they know it’s not all doom and gloom”. We can do that because of the way we’ve performed over recent weeks and months.
“As quick as it can change the wrong way, it can change back the right way again”.