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Who will win this one?
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 Post subject: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2009 3:16 pm 
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Aston Villa defender Luke Young could return for the Birmingham derby after a spell on the sidelines.

The 30-year-old full-back has been out with a thigh problem and has also been recovering following the death of his half brother.

The former England defender was a regular performer in Villa's side last season, and Martin O'Neill believes he is returning to fitness after his spell of compassionate leave.

"Luke Young is improving his general fitness and feeling a bit stronger after his recent tragedy," the Villa boss said.

"I had a word with him and he said he is feeling a lot better. Physically he has got a bit of work to do but he is improving.

"Emotionally that is a different aspect altogether and that is something he will be able to tell you, but he is back here day to day.

"He will get an opportunity to take a day or two away any time he needs with our blessing. He needs as long as he needs. We will see. We will use this wee bit of time for him to reintegrate again."
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Villa are currently two points ahead of arch rivals Birmingham with a game in hand, and Young could be given a place in the team for the crunch game at St Andrew's on Sunday.

"Is the Birmingham game realistic for Luke Young?" O'Neill added. "I would say at this minute physically there is no reason why it shouldn't be.

"I know he has got a bit of work to do and it is frustrating for Luke from the physical aspect, almost being ready pre-season and then having to come out of games at a few hours' notice.

"That is something that is a new experience for him but overall he is getting there."


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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Tue Sep 08, 2009 8:09 pm 
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I don't know why, but I just fancy this one for a 2-2 draw. I've picked my selections out for the weekend, and now I'm in a right dilemma. Really, I should look at them again after the internationals, but Sods Law says that any I change will end up having been right in the first place.

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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 7:39 am 
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you shouldn't change predictions you'll only curse your self

i've gone for 1-2, need to see if i can get the cliche "Form goes out of the window in a derby" in my write up :fonz:


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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:47 am 
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The very cheek of it, suggesting that I dabble in cliches. I hope that you're as sick as a parrot when my 2-2 comes in - I'll be over the moon. It's a funny old game.

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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:54 am 
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no i meant i was going to try and get it in mine, i like to include one or 2 football writer cliche's or standards, it gives me a chuckle (yes i'm easily amused)


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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 12:13 pm 
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Ah, I thought you were alluding to...
Birmingham v Aston Villa – The local midlands derby is back following Birmingham’s promotion to the Premier League. Villa are currently ahead in the league placings, with victories in their last two games. Birmingham sit on four points, with a win, a draw, and two defeats to show for their opening four games. Form often goes out of the window for derby matches, in what should be an open and entertaining game. Verdict 2-2.

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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Wed Sep 09, 2009 12:28 pm 
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hehe no, i'd not read it :)


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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:01 am 
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Birmingham midfielder Lee Carsley is determined to avoid another embarrassing defeat at the hands of local rivals Aston Villa at St Andrews on Sunday.

The last time the two teams faced each other in the Midlands derby was April 2008 at Villa Park with Martin O'Neill's side running out comfortable 5-1 winners.

Carsley was not a Blues player at the time but the Birmingham-born midfielder knows what the derby means to players and fans alike.

The majority of the former Everton man's family are dyed-in-the-wool Birmingham fans so the 35-year-old will be desperate to avoid a repeat of the mauling 18 months ago.

"We are all aware of the heavy 5-1 defeat at Villa," he said. "I am sure the manager will bring it up in his pre-match talk because to lose so comprehensively in a local derby is not a good thing for the players or the fans.

"It is not something you can forget about.

"A local derby also affects players in different ways. They can be playing brilliantly but go to pieces in a derby.

"It is important we have to make sure that we win our personal battles and that we get a result.

"It is a big game for the fans. But at the end of the day it is a great opportunity for us get three points because we are at home.

"The key to survival in the Premier League is to win at home and get something away from home."
Decent start

Carsley is also confident that Alex McLeish's men have shown enough in their opening four Premier League games to prove they have what it takes to avoid relegation.

"We have had a decent enough start without lighting up the league but the manager and the players are quietly confident that we have adjusted to the step up," he added.

"We are learning very quickly about the Premier League and we are all optimistic about the future.

"Although we have home advantage form and expectations go out of the window in local derbies.

"Basically, it will be the team who turns up on the day has a great chance of winning.


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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 1:55 pm 
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lawro Says

Quote:
Birmingham v Aston Villa

With local derbies, when you're playing for bragging rights, it's easy to lose sight of the fact that all you can really get out of the game is winning or dropping three points - because of the local factor, it always seems so much bigger than that.

This early in the season, when both teams are still bedding players in, it's bound to be a bit nervy.

Verdict: 1-1



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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:41 am 
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New defensive duo Richard Dunne and James Collins could both make their Aston Villa debut in Sunday's derby at Birmingham.

Dunne and Collins were signed for a combined £11 million from Manchester City and West Ham respectively at the end of the summer transfer window.

Curtis Davies is likely to be out until the new year after undergoing surgery on a long-term shoulder problem, while Luke Young is not yet ready to return from a pre-season thigh setback.

Striker Emile Heskey is battling to recover from the tight hamstring suffered in England's World Cup qualifier against Croatia at Wembley.

Birmingham boss Alex McLeish is weighing up whether to hand a full league debut to striker Christian Benitez.

Benitez has impressed as a substitute since his summer move from Santos Laguna after slowly building up his fitness following a shoulder operation.

It may depend on Benitez's physical condition after returning from two World Cup qualifiers with Ecuador.

Fellow striker Cameron Jerome is again sidelined with an ankle injury while former Villa striker Kevin Phillips is likely to be amongst the substitutes against his former club.

Teams:

Birmingham (from): Hart, Maik Taylor, Parnaby, R Johnson, Queudrue, Carr, Larsson, Carsley, Ferguson, Bowyer, McFadden, O'Connor, Fahey, Benitez, McSheffrey, O'Shea, Espinoza, Phillips, Vignal, D Johnson.

Aston Villa (from): Friedel, Guzan, Beye, Cuellar, Dunne, Collins, Clark, Lowry, Warnock, Shorey, Milner, Petrov, Reo-Coker, Sidwell, A Young, Delph, Albrighton, Gardner, Agbonlahor, Carew, Heskey.

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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 2:14 pm 
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I've gone 1-0 Villa, Agbonlahor to get a goal and Birmingham to fail to score.

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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2009 2:20 pm 
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Mystic Jarv wrote:
Birmingham City V Aston Villa

It's often said form goes out the window in Derbies, both teams are playing for local pride and bragging rights between friends, at work and in the pub.

After a poor first week Villa have 2 wins from 3 games and are nicely placed in 8th with a game in hand on many of those above them. Birmingham have made a few decent signings and should have a handful of players back from injury. Unfortunately for blues fans i can seebragging rights going to the team wearing claret or possibly white depending on which kit Villa wear.

Mystic Jarv predicts 1-2 to Aston Villa


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 Post subject: Re: 13/09 - Birmingham Vs Aston Villa - 12:00
PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2009 2:08 pm 
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idontfeardeath wrote:
I've gone 1-0 Villa, Agbonlahor to get a goal and Birmingham to fail to score.


Quote:
Gabriel Agbonlahor struck a late winner as Aston Villa beat derby rivals Birmingham in a tight game.
The England striker nodded in after John Carew had headed an Ashley Young free-kick towards him.
The goal settled a match of rare chances and quality, although it did set up a belatedly exciting finish.
Birmingham pushed for a leveller and Agbonlahor should have added a second when he was clean through only to put his shot high.
The brief late drama was not in keeping with a game in which both defences had the upper hand for the most part.
And Birmingham fans will feel their side could have done more earlier as they adopted a similarly cautious approach to the game as Villa.

The St Andrews faithful certainly provided a vociferous atmosphere for their side as they tried to encourage them to avenge the 5-1 thrashing dished out by Villa the last time these two met.
And, although Birmingham showed plenty of intensity, Villa had a more controlled approach as they tried to keep the home side at arm's length and hoped their extra quality would provide the breakthrough.
The strategy almost paid off during the first half but James Milner and Agbonlahor failed to take the chances which came Villa's way.
Milner shot wide and sliced an effort horribly wide after a driven cross from Agbonlahor, who had a near post header diverted just wide by defender Roger Johnson.
Villa were playing with a new-look defence as central defenders Richard Dunne and James Collins made their debuts along with left-back Stephen Warnock.
There first real test came when Garry O'Connor chested down a ball and had a shot blocked by Warnock, who quickly got himself up to get in front of Sebastian Larsson's follow up strike.
Lee Bowyer had a 20-yard shot saved and ex-Villa trainee Keith Fahey steered a shot just wide for the home side who suffered the loss of James McFadden because of a thigh injury.
Birmingham closed into their shell more the longer the game went on as Villa started to increase their threat on goal after big striker Carew entered the fray.
Steve Sidwell headed straight at Blues keeper Joe Hart before Milner again shot wide.
But any hopes Birmingham had of a battling point were quashed when Agbonlahor struck for Villa's third league win on the bounce and saw them continue the away form which served them so well last season.

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