Saturday, October 20, 2007

Weekend Outlook (20 Oct 2007)

Aston Villa vs Manchester United

"...Rooney is a very good player but Tevez is more interesting to watch...."
- JayWalk, 20 Oct 2007

And we are back from the Euro2008 qualifiers where both the entire UK sank proverbially. Wales, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland are all dead in the water already while the midweek slip-ups of both Scotland and England, make it looks like it is going to be very quiet summer next year. Or perhaps for once, we are actually going to have the England team win the Olympic medal in Football?

Anyway, tracking back to a fortnight ago, the goals faucet finally got fixed and we shipped 4 past a helpless Wigan keeper.

I must say that I am very impressed with Tevez so far which has taken a much shorter time to get into the ManUtd groove as compared to Carrick a season ago. Like Rooney, both are rather short and stocky, thus allowing them to have very good balance on their feet (due to their lower centre of gravity). However, my vote goes to Tevez for he has more flair then Rooney who plays like a British Bulldog. Don't get me wrong here. Rooney is a very good player but Tevez is more interesting to watch.

By the way, ManUtd has also signed Carlos Tevez's younger brother Miguel last week. Perhaps an attacking version of the Neville brothers?

You have got to tip your hat to Sir Alex Ferguson for his foresight for just barely a few months ago, we were wondering if all the effort spent on landing this Argentinian was worth it? Given the dubious muck that Tevez was in resulting in West Ham suffering a 5 million pounds Sterling fine and a lawsuit by Sheffield United side, we question why Fergie is bending over backwards to get this guy. Surely there must be other candidates?

What can I say? We were proven wrong once again and forced to talk in a muffled way from now on, due to the shoe that is now stuck in our mouths.

Coming back to the Wigan game, the Latics had absolutely no chance against us for we maul them and we maul them good. I kinda feel sorry for teams who are just there to be killed.

JayWalk The Talk: Well, I doubt we would enjoy the same comfort as we travel to Villa Park today.

As per usual, let me first rattle off the casualties. Park, van dar Sar, Neville, Saha, Brown, Carrick, Hargreaves, Silvestre and Foster. It is also unlikely that we are going to feature Brazilian Anderson as he returned late from the World Cup qualifiers as well. Jet lag is bound to sap his of his energy and putting him on the pitch may end up as an advantage to the opposition instead. Taking a leaf from Real Madrid who would be leaving Robinho and Baptista out of the squad and Barcelona traveling to Villarreal without Ronaldinho, I think Anderson would also be left out of today's game as well.

The silver lining is that Hargreaves, van dar Sar and Neville are close to full recovery while Vidic and O'Shea will be available today.

On the Villa side, only Berger and Carew are notable casualties.

One thing bad about these international fixtures is that they always favour the next lesser teams that the big boys are about to meet. The bigger the club, the more players they have committed to the various national squads for these games and come back exhausted or worse, injured. Same goes for the various European tournaments too but at least the traveling is less as compared to those players who have to play out of the continent and not to mention time zone.

JayWalk The Walk:
If anything is on our side, it's historical stats. Aston Villa is by far the worst Premiership side to play against us with 15 defeats since the inception of the Premier League. In our last 7 head-to-heads in all competitions, we are 6-0-0.

Problem is that Aston Villa is no pushover this time round as they are also on a hot streak with a shock scalp over the demoralised Chelsea in their last EPL fixture.

Bookies are assigning a 0.75-ball handicap in favour of the home side with a 2.075 decimal odds for ManUtd to overcome the deficit. In short, the bookies think that ManUtd should still struggle to a 1-goal win but a very high risk of a draw possibility.

On any other given day, I would have gone for the ManUtd win but with a squad that is severely depleted, it is really hard for me to wager here.

Stay away from this game.

Disclaimer: The above views are purely my own two-cents' worth. In other words, I cannot and will not guarantee that my predictions are accurate. If you want to bet on the game, do so at your own risk. Also, please bet responsibly and within your means regardless of how "sure thing" that game may appear to be. As the old saying goes, "The Ball Is Round". Good luck.


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