Following two successive cup defeats in a week to lower league opposition in Bradford City and Millwall, the pressure is on Paul Lambert to hold onto his Aston Villa job.
The club are struggling in the Premier league with Lambert’s youthful defence coming under intense scrutiny from pundits and fans alike.
But I believe that Villa fans have seen the worst of their sides form and Lambert will turn it around. Why?
The emergence of Christian Benteke by Lambert has been a source of comfort for Villa fans. He has kept prolific goalscorer Darren Bent out of the team and has been compared to Didier Drogba by many.
But, does anyone remember how disappointing Drogba was in his first seasons at Chelsea? He only managed 16 goals in 41 appearances two seasons running and failed to justify his £24m price tag, whilst 22 year-old Benteke has already scored 7 times in 20 appearances for Villa. Chelsea had the likes of Frank Lampard and Damien Duff in their prime, as well as a world-class striker in Hernan Crespo to bag them goals when they needed it. Villa have Stephen Ireland, Barry Bannan and the misfiring Charles N’Zogbia. It’s not the same is it?
Lambert has the know-how to pick up quality players at bargain prices and that will see Villa through. And he’s not a quitter. If you were to ask any Villa fan if they would prefer a manager to take over such as David Moyes, the answer would almost certainly be ‘yes’. What you probably don’t know if that Lambert and Moyes have very similar records in football. Moyes has won 43.93% of his matches as a manager, while Lambert has a similar 41.69%.
Villa can cash in on Darren Bent this January, will let go of the deadwood in Alan Hutton and will invest that money in a quality midfielder and a proven centre and wing back with experience. The youth experiment hasn’t worked. But that’s OK- Lambert can put it right in January. That’s what the transfer window is for. You have to applaud the effort and the intention from the Scotsman.
If Villa stick with Lambert he can reproduce the success that David Moyes has achieved with Everton. He just needs time and patience.
Can Villa turn their season around against misfiring Newcastle at Villa Park on Tuesday night? Bet here with William Hill!