It makes a pleasant change, I suppose. Recent games have seen us throwing away leads to take just a point when three beckoned. Saturday’s draw at Portman Road saw us save a point as Ipswich peppered the goal in the eight minutes of injury time the officials added.
No wonder Ipswich felt aggrieved at not taking all three points. They were denied by – deep breath – Gollini (twice), both Kodjia and Cissokho off the line, and the woodwork. Now they understand how frustrated we’ve been in recent weeks when the chances have been there to take three points but end with just one.
This morning, I’m happy – relatively speaking – with a point.
It might have been different. Amavi went close in the opening stages but nothing in the remaining ninety minutes which gave any sense that this would be a hard fought away win. We weren’t really at the races for much of that time and nor in fairness were Ipswich.
Looking back at the past seven days, it’s been hugely frustrating. Forest should have been put to the sword, Brentford too. They weren’t and seven points from nine is three from nine. Steady but not good enough to climb the table. We’re eleven points off the lead, three off the drop. That’s the reality and whilst I think we can push on toward the play-off places, things need to start happening sooner rather than later.
Frustration though, is a constant bedfellow for the Villa fan.
Five draws and a solitary win or one defeat in seven. It depends on your viewpoint as to what promise or portents of doom that brings. The reality is that Roberto Di Matteo has changed the side substantially and asking them to play in a different way. Nine signings this summer, most of which are in the starting line-up, is a lot of business and it takes time for the players to blend.
It didn’t seem it at the time but defeat at Luton may just be the best thing which has happened this season. It gave us an unwelcome bump in the road on the day and was an utterly unpleasant experience. However, it has left RDM and the squad with a free week to work in training unhindered.
And we need it. A bit of shooting practice wouldn’t go amiss as opposed to us shooting and missing with every shot in a match.
Newcastle United next and whilst their promotion ambitions were dented by Wolves on Saturday, it still represents a massive test for us. We will need to play considerably better than recent games, firing on all cylinders in attack whilst kicking anything which moves in defence. OK, something more refined than that but you get the point.
Which, right at this moment in time, is what I think we’re good for against the Barcodes. A week in training, some positive thoughts and who knows, maybe we can take more than that. The only way, as Yazz put it, is up and we need to start rising now.