It’s been a season containing everything. Highs, lows and all in-between.
With that in mind, It’s time to start to wrap up the season. I asked our team of writers to offer their thoughts on the 17/18 campaign.
Your thoughts are welcome, as well! Feel free to leave a comment below.
Disappointing. Not as much in that Villa failed to go up (which I can live with, as getting out of this division isn’t easy), rather in how Villa didn’t go up. I can accept runs of poor form, but I just can’t accept the five-match run that spanned March and April, where Villa played no top-half sides and got just four from an available 15 points. The fixture list was perfectly set up for Villa, and they ultimately got the results they needed against Wolves and Cardiff, but they bottled it against QPR and Bolton Wanderers. That’s what’s frustrating.
I really loved this team, there were so many happy memories that were made this season between individual moments of brilliance and whole matches of dominance. Some instances like not competing in the cup matches and the excruciating poor runs of form that took the air out of the club were puzzling and disappointing though in retrospect should have been expected. It’s going to take an emotional toll not to have the big final disappointment of not being promoted cast a pall over the good memories. The dark cloud of the financial state of the club is now in full focus and we’ll see over the next weeks how devastating not going up will be.
Inconsistent. On one hand -- it was the first time in many years the team was competitive and (at times) fun to watch. When the midfield got going following Aston Villa was a pleasure and everything was possible. On the other -- the bottom would fall out and the team would appear old and flat. Those performances were made even worse because all of us knew what the team was capable of. And the swinging axe of FFP slowly lowering makes it all a little tough to think about. 2017/2018 is a turning point year. The scary part is none of us know which way it turns. Hopefully the rot is out of the club -- and that is no small feat from Xia, Bruce & company. But like you say Robb -- it was a fun team for much of the season and it is possible for that to continue.
There have been plenty of ups and downs, but this is a season I’ll never forget. While the endgame of getting promotion to the Premier League ended in failure at the final hurdle, there have been plenty of incredible moments. Jack’s goal, beating Wolves and Blues, the Middlesbrough semi-final. Of course, there have been plenty of moments to forget as well.
It’s a shame that financial fair play penalises teams like us, as the Championship, at heart, is a good league. I don’t mind staying in it, but Villa can’t become the team we know that they can be if they stay here. Who knows where we go from this point.
This team made supporting for Villa fun again. So many great games. 5-0 against Bristol City. 4-1 against Wolves. The Playoff Semi-final. Jack Grealish. Snoddy. But at times they were also maddening. So much attacking talent sitting back and absorbing lesser teams. I joked all year that Bruce wanted to 1-nil his way to promotion and after Saturday, it seemed like the plan. Villa feel stable. I hope that’s the case and Plan B is to maintain a professional capable Championship side ready to go for promotion.
So many highs and lows that ultimately left one wondering what could have been. For instance, maybe Grealish didn’t lacerate his kidney in a friendly against a Premier League side and, who knows, Villa might themselves be a Premier League side. Saturday was a tough pill to swallow and there are now certainly times ahead that will probably leave many supporters, including myself, still asking questions. However, through thick and thin, UTV!
So, what do you think? How do you feel about the latest season in Aston Villa’s history? Leave a comment below, or reach out to us on Twitter!