Paul Lambert aims to find a win for the first time in nine games as the Aston Villa travel to London tonight to face Crystal Palace.
A loss tonight and the Villa manager will come under even more pressure. Or worse, become the first Premier League manager this season to be relieved of his position.
Looking at the results it’s hard to argue against Lambert having to go. The Villains have not won a game since their brilliant opening, winning three out of four games.
The last of these victories was over Liverpool on the 13th of September but since then Villa have failed to earn points from the teams they would be expected to such as QPR and most recently Burnley.
A period of games against Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Everton in succession in this lean period for Villa did not make it easy for Lambert but conceding eleven goals without return for four fixtures is inexcusable.
Three draws in a row are a sign that a win may be on the horizon but even so given the way Lambert’s side have performed this season, following their magnificent start, it may be time for the Birmingham outfit to head in another direction, managerial wise.
Roy Keane’s recent departure is sure to only complicate matters further with players such as Darren Bent (currently on-loan at Brighton) praising his managerial style, albeit only as an assistant.
Bent, speaking to Sky Sports said of how he was sorry to see him go.
“I think he got on with the players. I think what people most respected about him is that he told it as it was, to be fair.
“And if you weren’t playing well he would tell you. He wouldn’t hide from the fact and yeah as I said personally he was fantastic for me. I had a lot of contact with him on different aspects of the game and I’m sorry to see him go.
“Obviously we wish him all the best and hopefully he does well in whatever venture he does next.”
Whether Lambert will be relieved of his duties or not is still unknown but they face a Crystal Palace side who have recently beaten Liverpool 3-1 and drawn away to Swansea. Crystal Palace will be without Damien Delaney and Adrian Mariappa and there are also doubts over the fitness of Dwight Gayle.
Crystal Palace’s defensive woes are matched by Aston Villa with Nathan Baker, Ron Vlaar and Philippe Senderos all missing out. Christian Benteke is set to return to action from suspension for the Villains though so Lambert will be hopeful he will score his first goal of the season and keep the Scot off the chopping board.
Aston Villa to continue their winless streak. A draw looks likely
Crystal Palace 1-1 Aston Villa
Rob Lyons, Pundit Arena.
Featured image By Ian Wilson from London, England (Villa Park) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons