Bolton 1 Aston Villa 2: Albrighton and Petrov grab the goals in first away win of season

Marc Albrighton and Stiliyan Petrov produced the vital goals to deliver Villa’s first away win of the season, but Ivan Klasnic was able to prevent Brad Guzan earning a clean sheet on his first Premiership start.

It was a much improved performance during the first half, and fans crying out for a 4-4-2 system will be quick to point out that was the case today with Marc Albrighton on the right and Charles N’Zogbia on the left. However, it has to

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Tale of the tape: N’Zogbia vs Downing vs Young vs Albrighton

It’s a pretty rare event that we’ll receive official confirmation of an agreement being reached to purchase a player before the actual transfer itself is announced, but that’s apparently the situation with Charles N’Zogbia. It’s all over bar the shouting.

I’m sure such steps wouldn’t have been taken if it wasn’t a formality, it’s just a shame that the player won’t have the chance to hook up with his new team mates in Hong Kong due to a lack of work

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Albrighton, Delfouneso, Walker (Twice), Young, Downing and Bent all picked for England

Fabio Capello has named a 26-man squad to take on Switzerland in the next Euro 2012 qualifier at Wembley on June 4th and Ashley Young, Stewart Downing and Darren Bent are all included. As is Kyle Walker, although he’s no longer technically a Villan, he more than deserves a mention here.

In fact, Walker’s also included in Stuart Pearce’s confirmed 23-man squad for the European Under-21 Championships in Denmark next month along with Marc Albrighton and Nathan Delfouneso, who definitely are

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Video: Ashley Young interview with FATV, plus Kyle Walker’s screamer

Ashley Young talking to FATV ahead of England’s Euro 2012 qualifier against Wales on Saturday.

YouTube Video

James Collins gets a mention in the video, he was in the frame to captain the Welsh side on Saturday, but contrary to silly rumours circulating earlier this week, he’s only playing after passing a fitness test and was not fit for last Saturday’s game against Wolves.


You’ve probably already seen Kyle Walker’s “screamer” in a small pitch training game with the Under-21s I Tweeted yesterday.

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Goal analysis: More goals from the “wrong” side

Since the analysis of Gabby’s goal at Blackpool was well received, I thought I’d repeat the task for the goals against Blackburn yesterday. This time the solid orange lines represent player movements without the ball, the dashed orange lines indicate movement with the ball (dribbling) and the blue lines show the path of the ball between players (passes).

Goal One: Build up to the penalty

With the opening goal coming from the spot, there’s obviously nothing to look at with the goal

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Ashley Young and Darren Bent get the goals for England plus other international news

Ashley Young and Darren Bent scored both goals for England in a 2-1 victory over Denmark in Copenhagen tonight. It capped a pretty decent performance from England despite conceding an early Daniel Agger goal.

It was Ash’s first goal for England, winning his 12th cap, and Bent’s 2nd goal in what was amazingly only his 8th appearance for the national side. I think they’ll be in Capello’s plans again next time.

Bent played the full 90 minutes and might have scored more,

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Fulham 1 Aston Villa 1 – Positives can be drawn from last second draw

Brede Hangeland grabbed a point for Fulham at Craven Cottage with what was literally the last touch of what has been christened the “FxPro Derby”, nodding in a free kick at the far post in the 4th minute of injury time. That threatens to overshadow an awful lot of positives from a Villa side featuring two youngsters making their first starts in the Premier League.

Let’s address those positives first. Nathan Delfouneso, getting his first start thanks to being

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Contracts and internationals – the future remains bright

I don’t know whether it’s appropriate to keep referring to them as “kids”, I know I wouldn’t have appreciated it when I was their age, but regardless of the moniker, there’s a good deal to be optimistic when we see the batch of academy graduates long tipped for greatness finally becoming first team fixtures and also gaining recognition further afield.

Barry Bannan is reportedly about to be called up to the senior Scottish side and is receiving rave reviews from just

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Aston Villa 2 Burnley 1 – Villa through to quarters, but no Blues for Albrighton

It took an extra time winner from Stewart Downing to settle this one after Clarke Carlisle cancelled out Emile Heskey’s late opener, but it was a costly game for Marc Albrighton who will be suspended for the Birmingham derby game after being sent off during extra time.

Not a game I saw or even heard, but clearly another game where we struggled to find the net. Maybe not surprising when you start without any recognised strikers, but Ashley Young, Stephen

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