So, we are back and despite looking a bit star-struck for the first 20 minutes, kicked off with the perfect confidence boosting result. Solid in defence, competitive around the park and we created the better chances against what looks (on paper at least) to be a decent Villa side. Our organisation and physicality will hopefully allow us to capture some points on the road where our midfield set up should make us hard to break down and we can dominate set pieces. Getting those important home victories may be a little more challenging but if we can add a little more attacking flair before the transfer window closes then we might start really dreaming!
Another reason that it would be great to get a solid start to the season is that it would allow us to give some game time to our exciting youngsters such as Dan Potts, Jordan Spence and Rob Hall, all of whom looked more than decent in pre-season. However, even the most ardent supporters of big Sam’s effective football tactics would have to admit that he can be over-conservative when it comes to testing new talent. As time passes we may well regret some of the departures where young talent has not been given a real opportunity. Baldock, Morrison, Nouble et al can all cite lack of opportunity as a reason for their lack of success at the Boleyn and their causes were not helped last year by our premature exits from the cup competitions where emerging talent can be aired. Let’s hope we can avoid any unwanted surprises in the Crewe tie. Big Sam, give our kids a chance!
Overall, it’s a big well done to the boys yesterday. Let’s keep it up and let’s try and squeeze the joy out of free flowing Swansea next week. Maybe that will be the moment to try out a Diame-Diarra partnership in front of the back four….COYI!