Ever since the match against Manchester City, I've been waking up in cold sweats, my mind racing. In my nightmares I see, again and again, Barry Bannan heading off on loan to a Championship side. You might think I'm being dramatic for the sake of this writing, but I'm utterly serious. Thoughts of Baz leaving Aston Villa keep me awake at night.
(Yes, I'm taking medications to try and fix this problem. Thanks for the helpful advice, though).
Turns out, I have reason to fret:
There might be another player leaving #AVFC on loan to a Championship club this week I led to believe.
Edit: the story's now confirmed by the OS. Baz is gone. Until the end of the season.
There have been suggestions it will be others. Nathan Delfouneso, for one. Chris Herd, for another -- perhaps he hasn't found enough people for his band at Villa Park (Aaron, write this story). Habib Beye, even. But it's Barry Bannan.
On one hand, ok, kid needs playing time, and he's not going to get it in a congested midfield. At least, that's the theory. But have you actually watched Baz play? He was the best on the pitch against City, and while that wasn't incredibly difficult, he remained so when Gerard Houllier finally put on Ashley Young and Stewart Downing. This is a player who actually uses his head to do things other than put the ball in the net. You can see that he knows exactly where he wants to place a pass before he even receives the ball. He reads the game incredibly well and has the ability to direct the game from the center of the pitch. Bazza doesn't have the potential to be good, he's already there.
Alas, Gerard Houllier has failed to listen to me on numerous occasions, and it seems that Bannan is off to join Eric Lichaj at Championship club Leeds United. Aaron and I have a support group that meets every Thursday at 9pm. We sit around and discuss how our favorite players were driven away from the club and we drink heavily. Feel free to join. I'll be the one weeping into my whisky.