10:25 PM EDT, Tue September 23, 2014
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7500 To Holte 8 hours ago
Villa in Four Numbers: Villa actually lost for once

Villa in Four Numbers: Villa actually lost for once

Villa lost 3-0 to Arsenal at the weekend but our weekly look into the numbers game shows that things aren't looking all that bad yet at B6. Welcome back to another edition of Villa in Four Numbers! Paul Lambert's team actually lost. Oh no! The humanity! Here are four numbers that should help tell a story... maybe. 3 Aston Villa's position in the table. It's simple, sure, but for me it's still the most important thing here. Villa have 10 points already on the board when most of us weren't sure they'd manage 10 in the first 10 games considering the run of fixtures. And while there's still a...
7500 To Holte 8 hours ago
Get excited! Ron Vlaar rumours already popping up again

Get excited! Ron Vlaar rumours already popping up again

Apparently Manchester United and Arsenal both want Ron Vlaar. Hooray. Well, it's been three weeks since we've heard this rumour so it seems like it's time to bring it back. Manchester United and Arsenal are apparently interested in bringing in Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar. Sigh. Let's go over the details that we all know again. Manchester United saw Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic leave this summer and only got one centre back in return. They've had their injury concerns in the defense, too, with a few people picking up minor injuries. Plus, Vlaar played (very successfully) for...
7500 To Holte Sep 22, 2014
Benteke inbound

Benteke inbound

Lambert hints at a Benteke return - while also confirming that return won't be against Chelsea. Good, if somewhat vague news for all Villa fans - Christian Benteke's impending return is yet more impending according to Paul Lambert. Asked after the Arsenal match about a possible return against Chelsea, Lambert told the AVFC Official Site that "I'm not sure if that one might be a bit early. But you're not looking too far after that I think." Five months after an achilles injury, Benteke returned to training last week and will train again this week. Lambert appears to be saving him for an...
7500 To Holte Sep 22, 2014
Villa to send Herd to Bolton Wanderers on one-month loan

Villa to send Herd to Bolton Wanderers on one-month loan

Aston Villa have agreed to let Chris Herd head to Bolton Wanderers for a one-month loan. Chris Herd missed the end of last season, including an Australia call-up, with personal issues that set him back a bit. Since then, however, he's been reintegrated with the squad, though the chances for him to actually play have been few and far between. He was named to the bench in Villa's loss to Leyton Orient in the League Cup, but hasn't found himself on any other team sheets this season. And for good reason, too. Where, exactly, would Herd fit right now? Well, Paul Lambert seems to have found...
7500 To Holte Sep 20, 2014

Villa have five bad minutes, lose 3-0 to Arsenal

The Gunners scored thrice in 192 seconds to bury an Aston Villa side that made a bright, positive start to the game. Paul Lambert's Aston Villa side played really well and had the better chances for the first 30 minutes. And then Arsenal did some things and that was that. Mesut Özil scored on 33 minutes, Danny Welbeck on 34, and Aly Cissokho put the ball past Brad Guzan on 36 to seal Villa's fate for the day. In truth, things were probably doomed from the start. With illness running through the squad, Ashley Westwood was what we'd call a "late scratch" in hockey and Carlos Sánchez — who...
7500 To Holte Sep 20, 2014
VOTE: Aston Villa's man of the match in loss to Arsenal

VOTE: Aston Villa's man of the match in loss to Arsenal

Slim picking in today's man of the match poll, but tradition says we've got to choose someone. What does one do when there is a man of the match poll to be run and no one really deserving of the title? Well, run it anyways of course! Despite the loss and the poor play by some Villans, a few actually did perform pretty well today. They can't all be Carlos Sanchez. Gabby Agbonlahor had a few good runs, and Tom Cleverley was delivering set pieces with aplomb. And... well... there was a stomach bug that made everyone sick? Listen, I'm not sure what we can really say here. The first 30 minutes...
7500 To Holte Sep 20, 2014

Instant reaction to Villa's Twilight Zone loss to Arsenal

Aston Villa played well to start the match and then conceded three quick goals that doomed them. It was like watching an episode of the Twilight Zone. There's a soccer match going on, and Aston Villa are actually playing really well! For the first 30 minutes, they've outplayed Arsenal by a pretty significant margin. Then, we see a flash and there is no Villa on the pitch, and just as suddenly another flash and Villa reappear. Except that when they did, Arsenal had scored three goals in 210 seconds and the Villa players were looking around dazed and trying to figure out where that time...
7500 To Holte Sep 20, 2014

Aston Villa vs. Arsenal CONFIRMED lineups and open thread

It's Aston Villa versus Arsenal, in a battle of two of the three remaining unbeaten teams in the Premier League! Join us for the match. After four matches, Aston Villa have three wins and one draw and are one of only three unbeaten teams in the Premier League. Today they get to face off against one of the other unbeatens, an Arsenal squad who seem to be taking a page from last year's West Brom side and collecting ALL the draws in their 1-3-0 record. They're coming off a midweek defeat in Champions League play and are pretty beaten up by injuries. If ever there were a time for Villa to take...
7500 To Holte Sep 20, 2014
Surprise visitor at Villa Park for clash with Arsenal

Surprise visitor at Villa Park for clash with Arsenal

For the first time in two years, Randy Lerner will be at Villa Park to watch Aston Villa play. One of the biggest criticisms of Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner is that he manages the club from afar. It's been, for instance, two years since he appeared at Villa Park for a home match of his club. Well, that streak is apparently ending today as Villa get set to take on Arsenal in a battle of the unbeatens. It seems as if the visit has nothing to do with the sale of the club, and that can only further our beliefs that perhaps the owner is actually... well, interested. We've seen more...
7500 To Holte Sep 20, 2014
Liverpool 0-1 Aston Villa: Community player ratings results

Liverpool 0-1 Aston Villa: Community player ratings results

Here's what 7,500 to Holte readers had to say about Aston Villa's upset victory at Anfield. Aston Villa fans were over the moon with the side's win over Liverpool, and our community player ratings certainly reflect that. So far this season, no player has earned a rating over an 8; in this game, two Villa players reached that mark. Given the nature of the game it wouldn't be shocking to see Villa's non-defensive players taken down a peg, but our readers appear to have understood the gameplan and rated accordingly; this was a full-team effort in the defensive phase, and everyone played their...
7500 To Holte Sep 19, 2014

Villa loanee Aleksandar Tonev brought up on racism charges

On loan midfielder faces charges of racism. On loan Aston Villa midfielder Aleksandar Tonev has been charged with racially abusing Aberdeen defender Shay Logan in a Scottish Premiership match. Tonev, who is on loan at Celtic, faces charges of "excessive misconduct by the use of offensive, insulting and abusive language of a racist nature". Tonev has until September 26th to answer the Scottish FA's charges and has been called to a hearing on October 9th. The Bulgarian is on a season-long loan at Celtic after arriving at Villa from Lech Poznan in the summer of 2013. I can't say that I saw...
7500 To Holte Sep 19, 2014

John Carew: Aston Villa fan

One John Carew gets a little bit excited about Villa's current form. Who would have thought during the dire straits of last season, that Aston Villa would hold 2nd place in the Premier League table? No one? Wrong. I'll bet Villa Alumni John Carew never doubted the potential of Lambert, Keane and Co. Carew took to his twitter profile to express his feelings and perhaps his 'wishful thinking'. My Villans on fire , Champions League next season :D — John Carew (@JCarew10) September 14, 2014 Nope, he wasn't riding on any coattails, quite arguably and tenuously being England's second best...
7500 To Holte Sep 19, 2014

A memorable Aston Villa-Arsenal match from recent memory

Looking back at Boxing Day 2008. This weekend, Aston Villa take on Arsenal. The two teams have played some fairly memorable matches in the last couple years and in this week's Holte History, lets take a look at one from 2008. Having beaten Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium earlier in the year, Aston Villa played hosts to the London club on Boxing Day 2008. In that first meeting, a 70th minute own goal and a 80th minute goal from Gabriel Agbonlahor put a huge dent on Arsenal's title hopes, while cementing Aston Villa's challenge on a Champion's League spot. Villa had another chance to make big...
7500 To Holte Sep 19, 2014
Aston Villa have started with a sprint, but will the other shoe drop against Arsenal?

Aston Villa have started with a sprint, but will the other shoe drop against Arsenal?

Aston Villa have started the season brilliantly, but anyone that's paid attention over the past few years should be well aware that it could come off the rails at any given moment. This is, to say the very least, a strange time in the history of Aston Villa; the club has gone from Champions League contender to rapid decline, to foundering chaos, to uncertain future, to...whatever in the world is happening right now in the space of five years. A summer of uncertainty regarding the club's ownership gave way to some unexpected signings, some REALLY unexpected re-signings, and a point total...
7500 To Holte Sep 19, 2014

Nathan Baker Raises The Bar

The much-maligned Villa defender has given his side a rallying cry for a pivotal season. When Ron Vlaar was rested for our last game against Liverpool, you probably thought - 'That's it. Good season fellas, this is where it ends'. After Concrete Ron's form this summer in both the World Cup and the Premier League, you can hardly be blamed, the dutchman has been MASSIVE for us. So when Nathan Baker steps in, after a disappointing 2014 season where he seemed to smack his head on things more times than he helped keep clean sheets, I can understand the nerves kicking in. Honestly. If you were to...
7500 To Holte Sep 17, 2014

Help Aston Villa win every match

We've noticed that Aston Villa tend to win when Robert can't watch their matches. Now it's your chance to help the club you love! Have you been enjoying the torrid start to Aston Villa's season? Are you mildly irritated that an otherwise perfect record has been marred by a draw to Newcastle? Would you do anything you could to help Aston Villa keep winning? Well, we are starting an effort to give you that chance. Of Aston Villa's matches this season, I've only gotten the chance to see one: the insanely boring draw. When the club kicked off the season with a win at Stoke, I was in Alaska....
7500 To Holte Sep 17, 2014
'Nasty' Villa - The benefits of being mean

'Nasty' Villa - The benefits of being mean

Kicking Balotelli, flattening Barcelona wunderkinds and fearsome beards - Villa have found their tough edge. Could we be the new Stoke and is that a good thing? Certain media narratives grow up around every team. For the last few years, Villa’s has been that of a team of largely English ‘youngsters’ struggling against cannier, more foreign sides. Paul Lambert´s players were praised for trying to play 'proper football', before routinely losing leads or getting ripped apart. However after our good start to the season and a distinctly tougher looking Villa, characterised by the bearded...
7500 To Holte Sep 16, 2014
Villa send youngster out on loan to League One

Villa send youngster out on loan to League One

Aston Villa's Callum Robinson has joined League One side Preston North End on a 32-day loan. Callum Robinson, the young Aston Villa striker who saw some senior playing time towards the end of last season, is off on a 32-day loan to League One side Preston North End. He will be immediately eligible for their squad and may play in tonight's match against Chesterfield, where Daniel Johnson is on loan for Aston Villa as well. The move should have no impact on the senior squad whatsoever, as Robinson hasn't seen the pitch yet this season and it doesn't look like he would anytime soon. Gabby...
7500 To Holte Sep 16, 2014
Aston Villa renew the most unexpected contract

Aston Villa renew the most unexpected contract

Aston Villa have given Alan Hutton a new three-year deal. First it was Gabby Agbonlahor who got a new contract. And many of us clamored for more commitments, wanting to see Jack Grealish, Fabian Delph, or Ron Vlaar put pen to paper. But while Villa have kept the contract train rolling, today we get the least expected extension of them all: Alan Hutton has signed a new deal that will keep him with Villa through the 2016-17 season. The Scottish right back has played a vital role in the newly revitalized Villa defense this season, but it's hard not to be amazed at how quickly his fortunes...
7500 To Holte Sep 16, 2014
Fantasy Football: Managing your midfield

Fantasy Football: Managing your midfield

What types of players should you be going for in midfield? Last time in my fantasy column, we looked at forwards. Hopefully you did what I did and captained Diego Costa, as his hat-trick performance last week saw him earn a massive 34 points (17 if you didn't captain him). He remains the top scoring forward this season with 41 points. Unfortunately due to some injuries and the fact that some of my players are backups, my team only got 51 points this week, one less than the average of 52, despite eight of my players getting 2 points or less (5 got zero). For this reason, I decided to shake...