7:37 PM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
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7500 To Holte 6 hours ago

How to watch the Aston Villa vs. FC Dallas friendly online

For fans of Aston Villa who are desperate to see the club play, you can watch tonight's friendly against FC Dallas online. Here's how! Aston Villa are set to take on FC Dallas tonight in a preseason friendly from Dallas. Unfortunately for many, that means that the match won't be streamed on AVTV. If you're willing to stay up late though (the match kicks off at 2 AM England time) we've got great news. FC Dallas will be streaming the match for free on YouTube. You can access the feed here. It's actually pretty standard for MLS teams to show cup and friendly matches that aren't covered by...
7500 To Holte 8 hours ago

Benteke training in Dallas: Is he ahead of schedule?

Christian Benteke was doing light training with Aston Villa in Texas today. Is he closer to being fit than we thought? Christian Benteke has been training in Dallas alongside his Aston Villa teammates, according to Mat Kendrick. The Belgian striker was ruled out for the World Cup and the end of the Premier League season after he injured his Achilles tendon in April. Initial reports suggested that it would take at least six months for him to return to full fitness, but the resumed training may be a sign that he is ahead of schedule. In May, Benteke talked about being back sooner than was...
7500 To Holte 12 hours ago
Villa can play three at the back without sacrificing the front

Villa can play three at the back without sacrificing the front

We continue our look at possible formations for Aston Villa's upcoming season. Yesterday we began our examination of potential formations for the Aston Villa season by looking at the 3-5-2. There has been a lot of talk that the club are in a position to play three central defenders this season and the 3-5-2 is probably the formation that immediately jumps to mind for a lot of people. But a small tweak in that could reap a lot of rewards in terms of creativity, which brings us to today's formation: 3-5-1-1 You'll notice that the back end of this situation looks a lot like what we talked...
7500 To Holte 15 hours ago

Sorry Manchester United, Southampton, QPR -- Ron Vlaar is off the table

The latest speculation was that Ron Vlaar was going to Southampton, thanks to Liverpool stealing Dejan Lovren away. Prior to that it was Queens Park Rangers, who'd probably shower him with hundreds of thousands of pounds per week. And because Vlaar is Dutch, naturally he's been connected to joining Louis van Gaal at Manchester United, particularly since they have like two centerbacks on their roster. Except now it's looking as though Vlaar isn't leaving Aston Villa. In fact, Paul Lambert is quite adamant that he's not for sale. Here's the direct quote from the boss courtesy of the...
7500 To Holte Jul 22, 2014

Could a switch to 3-5-2 be Villa's key to success this year?

Aston Villa have a number of choices in formation for the coming season. Today we look at one way they could play three centre-backs, as many have suggested. Thanks to the moves they have made over the course of the summer, there has been increasing speculation that Aston Villa will feature a three-centre-back formation for the 2014-15 season. And, given what we know, that actually makes a lot of sense. But it's not the only option available to the club. Given the current depth chart, I sat down to figure out what formations we might see Aston Villa use this season. I came up with five...
7500 To Holte Jul 22, 2014
Premier League rules will require Villa to cut four players

Premier League rules will require Villa to cut four players

In order to comply with Premier League rules, Aston Villa have some cuts to make to ensure they can field a proper 25-man squad. Earlier today I compiled an Aston Villa depth chart that got some discussion started on twitter. Dan Ward, who used to run Aston Villa Central and now uses that same site to keep helpful Villa pages, made a great point about Villa's current squad: @UTVilla @7500toHolte @JamieCutteridge worth noting that we currently have 29 players 21+ y.o.; at least 2 more to join tonev & luna, then. — Dan Ward (@ThatDanWard) July 22, 2014 He also linked to one of his...
7500 To Holte Jul 22, 2014
Do Villa actually have enough players to cover the pitch?

Do Villa actually have enough players to cover the pitch?

A look at the Aston Villa depth chart as it currently stands. I'm going to be writing an article soon on the different ways we might see Aston Villa line up this season. In preparation for that, I was cobbling together a little depth chart for my own reference. Then I did some quick searching and realized I couldn't find one online for Villa as they stand, so I figured I might as well publish this in case anyone else is looking. One quick note: I've listed a few players in positions where I absolutely would not want to see them (Chris Herd at right back, for instance) but where they could...
7500 To Holte Jul 21, 2014

Villa join Everton, West Ham in pursuit of Chelsea winger

According to multiple reports that unfortunately seem to be stemming from the Daily Mail, Aston Villa are pursuing the possibility of bringing in Christian Atsu on loan. The 22-year-old was last seen storming up the left wing for Ghana during the World Cup, and he's made it clear that he won't be returning for another loan spell at Dutch side Vitesse. As you might gather from the mention of Vitesse, Atsu's parent club is Chelsea. Hence, talk of another loan. But Villa aren't the only ones looking to get a quality player on the cheap. Fellow Premier League sides West Ham and Everton are...
7500 To Holte Jul 21, 2014

Left Out! Two Villa first-teamers miss Texas Tour

Antonio Luna and Aleksander Tonev are not travelling to the United States with the rest of the Aston Villa squad Aston Villa have arrived in Texas ahead of the preseason tour, however, two players who would have been expected to battle for first-team minutes have been left at home. Antonio Luna and Aleksander Tonev are the two players who have been left out of the 26-player travelling squad which includes injured strikers Christian Benteke and Libor Kozák. Samir Carruthers is another player who will not be appearing during the US tour, as he was also left out of the squad. With players...
7500 To Holte Jul 19, 2014

Blame Liverpool: Southampton eyeing move for VIlla’s Vlaar

Aston Villa's Ron Vlaar may become a Southampton target, but only if they lose Dejan Lovren to Liverpool. Liverpool are the absolute worst, let's just get that out of the way. And while we Villa fans may be about to hate them, just imagine what it's like to be a Southampton fan. Last season you were one of the surprises of the year. Your team was better than you could've imagined, and it seemed built to have a long, bright future ahead of it. Since then, Liverpool have swooped in and nabbed Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana. Now they're looking to take yet another bite out of the Saints with...
7500 To Holte Jul 18, 2014

New Villa movie set to debut: Premier League

In 1982, a club from Birmingham, England called Aston Villa captured the hearts and minds of European football fans by winning the European Cup. Since then things haven’t quite gone so smoothly for the former kings of Europe. The 2014-15 season sees a club up against it. A desperate owner looking to sell. A manager without a budget. I think it’ll play out something like this. (Photoshop by Mark Yesilevskiy) INT. RANDY LERNER'S MAKESHIFT OFFICE RANDY LERNER is stroking his GIANT WHITE FURRY CAT PAUL LAMBERT enters to discuss the TRANSFER BUDGET LAMBERTI've identified a few players...
7500 To Holte Jul 18, 2014

Hutton demands talks, wants to go to Baggies

West Bromwich want to pay money for Alan Hutton, but Paul Lambert is loathe to see that happen. This has, understandably, made Hutton angry. Earlier this month we heard that West Bromwich Albion wanted to do the most West Brom thing possible: pay real money for Alan Hutton. Most Aston Villa fans immediately started giggling when they heard the news. What wasn't to like? Hutton was terrible when he played for Villa, and Lambert has not played him in his two years as manager. Hutton is terrible, and our most fierce rivals were looking to give us money to make themselves actively worse. This...
7500 To Holte Jul 17, 2014

Bent brace inspires Villa to comeback win over Mansfield

Aston Villa went behind 1-0 right before half-time but a strong performance from the "Bomb Squad" inspired Villa to a 3-1 come-from-behind victory at the One Call Stadium on Thursday against Mansfield Town. More often than not, it's pretty hard to take anything of value from preseason results. But when it's all set and done, Aston Villa have picked up a 3-1 victory away to Mansfield Town today and supporters should feel positive about the second-half contributions of former "Bomb Squad" members Alan Hutton, Charles N'Zogbia, and of course, Darren Bent. First Half Aston Villa (4-4-1-1): Shay...
7500 To Holte Jul 17, 2014
Mansfield vs. Aston Villa: Confirmed lineup and open thread

Mansfield vs. Aston Villa: Confirmed lineup and open thread

It's the preseason! Let's talk about it! Aston Villa vs. Mansfield lineups and open thread. YOU GUYS! GUESS WHAT TIME IT IS! IT'S TIME FOR FOOTBALL!! WE HAVEN'T HAD FOOTBALL IN... four days. Huh. Preseason friendlies seem even less exciting than usual when you've had a World Cup to watch all summer. Regardless, it's the first friendly of the summer for Aston Villa, and there really isn't too much to take away from this. We'll probably get to see Philippe Senderos, Kieran Richardson, and Joe Cole play for Villa for the first time. And we will DEFINITELY get to see the new Villa away kit for...
7500 To Holte Jul 17, 2014
Rangers looking to steal away Villa star... again

Rangers looking to steal away Villa star... again

QPR are still apparently interested in Ron Vlaar. I thought we'd left this behind us already. Remember last summer? Those idyllic days when Paul Lambert actually had money and didn't do too much with it. The halcyon moments when Randy Lerner seems ambivalent about the club rather than actively wanting out. The salad days of our youth when we all thought that Aston Villa might be able to reach the dizzying heights of mid-table mediocrity. If so, then you also surely remember the "Tottenham Hotspur want Christian Benteke" story that dominated our minds. Well, good news! We can bring back at...
7500 To Holte Jul 16, 2014

Newcastle Turns Its Greedy Eyes Toward Benteke

Rumors are the worst. Especially ones with no basis in reality. Here's one you will all be sure to hate. Christian Benteke at Newcastle? Newcastle fans have every reason to be excited about the very idea. But why would a transfer like this ever happen, especially now? Benteke is rehabbing his achilles injury and won't be fit for quite some time. Newcastle has just purchased a whole bunch of players, some of whom they probably don't even need. Let's break this insanely bad rumor down into dust. Where did it come from? The first hint of this bogus garbage comes from a tweet written by a man...
7500 To Holte Jul 15, 2014
Villa midfielder sent out on Turkish loan

Villa midfielder sent out on Turkish loan

Aston Villa have sent Yacouba Sylla out on a year-long loan to Turkish club Kayseri Erciyesspor. Perhaps I'm an outlier, but I couldn't be happier to hear that midfielder Yacouba Sylla is going out on a year-long loan to Kayseri Erciyesspor in the Turkish Super League. Sylla was absolutely awful last season for Aston Villa, and the Mali international made me angry every time he saw the pitch. But the move to Turkey could be a good one for Sylla. You may recall that he showed a lot of promise in the latter half of the 2012-13 season after Paul Lambert brought him in. The performance we...
7500 To Holte Jul 15, 2014

Swansea want to keep World Cup midfielder away from Villa

Swansea want to extend the contract of Korean midfielder Ki Sung-Yeung, which would mean that Villa couldn't get him. Boo hiss. We found out yesterday that Aston Villa were interested in Swansea midfielder Ki Sung-Yeung. The 25-year-old just got off of a successful stint with the South Korean team in a World Cup that saw him be one of his squad's few highlights, so many Villa fans were justifiably excited by the news. Well now Swansea are being total jerks. Apparently their chairman is encouraging Ki to talk with manager Garry Monk about signing a new contract, since his current deal is...
7500 To Holte Jul 14, 2014
Villa ask Baggies to pay actual money for Hutton, hilarity ensues

Villa ask Baggies to pay actual money for Hutton, hilarity ensues

Who in their right mind would pay to bring Alan Hutton and his huge wage packet to their club? Apparently West Brom. Facepalm. You might have seen some comments about the Blackpool squad for the upcoming season, which is just a little thin for a Championship season that starts in 26 days. West Brom may not be quite on the same scale, but they have a pretty serious squad depth problem. I count 18 senior players, including 4 new signings, before you are looking at untested academy products. Essentially, if any of their players get injured, the youth are in the squad. Over the course of a...
7500 To Holte Jul 14, 2014

Could Antonio Luna make the switch to fair Verona?

The Spanish left back's Villa career never really got off on the right foot. Is he now set to make a move south to Hellas Verona—a club that boasted Serie A's third-worst defensive record in 2013-14? Antonio Luna scored the goal to seal Aston Villa's opening day shock victory over Arsenal that endeared him as a cult hero. And then it went all downhill from there. Now, it looks like 'Tony Moon' might be set to leave the club just a year after joining, with Hellas Verona said to be interested in his services. Now, in truth, there's not all that much to say here. With Kieran Richardson...