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Aston Villa 1-1 Reading FC: The Alternative View

It seems it’s not only Reading fans who are losing patience with their manager...

Aston Villa v Brentford - Sky Bet Championship Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images

Reading travelled to the Midlands in more hope than anything else, whilst Aston Villa although unbeaten haven’t been firing on all cylinders and the natives in the midlands are starting to get restless.

If the hosts had taken three points then probably you couldn’t have begrudged it. However the game isn’t just 90 minutes long, it’s 90 plus however long the referee wants to play for, and for once Reading were the ones scoring a late goal rather than conceding one.

What does need to be addressed though is why oh why Reading have a knack of conceding straight after half time - how many times have teams scored against us in the opening 10 minutes of the second half?! It’s bordering on ridiculous, but probably a good bet down the bookies (#GambleAware).

This isn’t just a Clement thing, but something that has been plaguing the Royals for a couple of seasons now – or so it seems.

Back to the game and most of the post-game comments from Villains fans were around Steve Bruce. I know that Reading fans like a good old whinge about managers and whether they should be sacked or not, but to be honest Villa are one of FIVE unbeaten teams this season and sit 4th – you really don’t have a lot to whinge about, try not having won a game for god knows how long and flirting with relegation with three of the last four seasons – THEN you have something to whinge about.


Social

Big clubs? Jeez every team thinks it’s them

The debate is open - Good save or poor finish?

‘Mickey Mouse Cup’ - You won’t be saying that if you get further into it

Actually do agree with this.

Anyone spotting a trend?

Honesty the best policy!

Small poll but wow...

Diddums.

A dire side that has just taken two points off you.

Song Time - just no

Speaking of Songs - Aerosmith’s Dream On is apt

Love it! But you have far to much time on your hands!


Media

For once we don’t have tumbleweeds running through the media section.

I’m getting the feeling that Laurie Whitwell, who composed the match report for the Daily Mail, might be a secret Villa fan – they call the penalty a controversial one, although how can it be when it’s a scissor tackle that everyone including the manager admit doesn’t need to be made? They also go on to say the game was a comfortable one for Villa apart from the “astonishing” triple save. Hmm…

Soccer Souls really need to update their picture library - I know that it’s hard sometimes getting imagery – but van den Berg and Kermorgant aren’t even at the club anymore. They have a minimal report and player ratings – will leave that one there.

The bible of football fact(!) which is HITC carry an article on the fans slating Jonathan Kodjia’s performance. If I was a Villa fan I would be more concerned which black hole Scott Hogan has vanished into, after paying decent money for him ( if they don’t want him I’m sure we can find a home for him in Reading).

The local papers carry interesting views of the game with the Express & Star saying that it was a frustrating afternoon and that Chester had won the ball (yes may have done but scissor kicks are outlawed), and they do admit though it wasn’t just one way traffic.

Interestingly Football.London say that Reading were lucky to get a point and that Villa dominated the game. They also have the player ratings etc on the site.

Over at the BBC and it’s all about Bruce, and mainly his comments around Chester, which to be honest if that was me - I would be making a beeline for the managers office on Monday, saying that level of criticism stays in the dressing room. They also carry a comment from Clement saying that those types of penalties are 50/50 and over a course of a week in this case can be seemed to even itself out.

Finally at Skysports they have the usual video coverage of the game, 1 minute 59 this time, they give a fairly neutral version of the game and there’s the video thoughts of @MissBeckaEllen on their page as well!


Summary

Two away games and two points: to be honest that’s a good return for a Reading side that’s struggling for a settled team and confidence.

A point at Villa is not to be sniffed at and these two points (and let’s be honest really should have been 4 out of 6) are welcome. The differences between expectations of the Villa faithful and Readings couldn’t be starker. One set are moaning like crazy that they have no chance of automatic promotion with Steve Bruce in charge and the others are wondering whether Clement is the person to take us to mid-table obscurity. I know which camp’s problems I would rather have!

However there where some interesting sub-plots from Saturdays game: McShane vanishing into thin air, much to the Royals fans pleasure after Wednesday horror defending, Josh Sims making a difference in winning a penalty, and of course Baldock finally getting his goal which his play has deserved and hopefully he will kick on from Saturday.

It’s rather alarming that at this stage of the season that Clement hasn’t yet got a settled side, he’s had a number of games now including last season to figure out this team and it does seem that he doesn’t know his best 11.

Good sides and winning sides have a settled team and chopping and changing does not contribute to this. In reality we need to get August out of the way and without the distraction of the loan window hopefully the team will settle down and start producing the performances that we know are there. If not, then it’s gonna be a hell of a long season...