Today's the first day of cup competition for Aston Villa, who take on Rotherham United at Villa Park. Today's game is the last competitive fixture for the club until Newcastle United visit on the 14th of September, since the Chelsea match that would have been this weekend had to be rescheduled. In case you were wondering, the Blues will be in Prague, hoping not to get rolled over in the European Super Cup for two years running. Their opponents will be Bayern Munich, who definitely wouldn't really enjoy hammering the club that stole the Champions League in their own backyard. To the links!
This is Aaron's preview that ran yesterday, which you may not have read the first time around because the picture at the top of the story is so incredible. The takeaway is that Villa should win, but Rotherham likely won't be as much of a pushover as we're hoping. If you still have a hangover from the last time we faced a lower-league side in the Capital One Cup, proceed with caution.
Andy Brassell is one of my favourite football writers, and he makes a really good point that a lot of us may have forgotten about due to the daunting start to Villa's season. If this team is going to make the improvements we're all hoping for, it's necessary for them to prove that they can beat the teams on their level.
A fun interview with one of the more likable American players of my lifetime. Given the Cascadian tinge of this site's writing staff (myself included), I was always going to include this one. Tragically, no mention of Guzan.
So, I live in Vancouver and on my commute to work I usually pick up one of those free papers that accumulate on the seats of public transit as though they were some kind of fungus. I don't know if this happens where you live, but these papers often have a half-baked celebrity gossip column that I can't avoid reading despite my best instincts. Anyways, these columns always include these terribly bland paint-by-numbers interviews with stars about how they love Vancouver and they would love to live in Vancouver and so on and so on. They're blatantly just pandering to the readers, but who cares because it's the easiest thing in the world to say that you love Vancouver and wouldn't mind living there even though these people are rich and they are famous so of course they're never actually going to move to Vancouver.
Anyways, apparently Didier Drogba likes MLS.