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Discussion Starter #1
Official Match Thread: Bolton Wonderers V Aston Villa

Semi finals time is here! And guess who's going to both legs!? :tongue:

Can't wait to see the Reebok on Wednesday, going to be an uphill task to get an away goal here but i'm really just looking forward to going to this venue. As you can tell, i've not been to many away games! Only Lille and Leeds out of the more major games.

Stefan Moore is out for up to a month I see.. Vassell and McCann have knocks still too. Not sure when they are coming back

Villa side in my opinion..

Sorensen,

Samuel, Mellberg, Johnsen, Delaney,

Hendrie, Hitzlsperger, Barry, Whittingham

Angel, Allback/Vassell


Prediction-

Bolton 1-0 Villa
 

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I think the away leg will be very tough in my opinion. I don't expect us to win, especially seeing how Bolton perform at home. They have no Okocha which is always a plus, but i'm going to predict:

Bolton 2
Nolan
Djorkaeff


Aston Villa 1
Hendrie
 

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VILLA DUO SET FOR CUP RETURN

Aston Villa have received a double Carling Cup semi-final boost with striker Darius Vassell and midfielder Gavin McCann expected to be fit for the clash at Bolton.

Vassell and McCann missed the 2-0 home defeat by Arsenal on Sunday with hamstring and knee problems respectively.

But the duo returned to full training on Tuesday and, although they will have late fitness tests, manager David O'Leary is confident they can return to the starting line-up.

It means Villa will have a complete clean bill of health as they aim to reach their first major final since defeating Leeds 3-0 in the 1996 League Cup final.


Ah, I remember the 3-0 Coca Cola Cup victory at the famous Wembley back in 1996 against Leeds. When Savo boomed the first in, silencing his critics...:)

Anyway, it's good to have McCann and Vassell back- I feel they were missed against Arsenal last Sunday. However, I think Hitzlsperger was one of the best on the field- he had a very good game in my opinion- but I expect O'Leary will bring McCann straight back in to that position.
 

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Didnt knew there was an Aston Villa forum. bolton is leading 3-1 after just 20 mins. And boy what a goal Angel scored!:cool:
prefering this game over Real Madrid - Valencia after seing that goal.
 

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VILLA SUNK AT THE REEBOK

Jay-Jay Okocha gave the Bolton supporters a farewell performance to remember before departing for the African Nations Cup in the 5-2 win over Aston Villa.

The Nigerian playmaker is expected to be away for a month and any side in the land would miss someone of his ability and class. Okocha scored twice - his second was outstanding - as Bolton gained an advantage from this Carling Cup semi-final first leg.

It was an enthralling match with Bolton 3-0 ahead after just 17 minutes courtesy of Okocha's strike and goals from Kevin Nolan and Stelios Giannakopoulos.

A fine brace from Juan Pablo Angel got the visitors right back in it but Bruno N'Gotty made it 4-2 in the 74th minute with a towering header from Djorkaeff's corner.

Lee Hendrie got a touch on the line - but could not prevent the ball finding the net.

And in the 80th minute, Okocha got his second goal of the night with a superb free-kick from the left. The Nigerian bent the ball with the outside of his boot - yet it still carried enough power to beat a stunned Thomas Sorensen.
 

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O'LEARY SLAMS 'HORROR SHOW'

'David O’Leary refused to mince his words after Villa went down 5-2 to Bolton at the Reebok Stadium in the first leg of the League Cup semi-final.

He said: “It was an amazing game but a real horror show on our part, defending-wise. It was disgraceful.

“But I thought going forward, our midfield and front men got it down and played.

“Kevin Davies has bullied us from the start. We prepared for that and we know how Bolton play but we didn’t handle him.

“We have got a real mountain to climb now but we’re still in it because it’s over two legs.

“I feel that if you take the poor defending out of the equation, I thought our football was good. I told them at half time that we couldn’t afford to give any more goals away but felt we were able to score some more – and we did. But you can’t legislate for what we did after that.

“The players owe the fans here tonight because they were fantastic but it’s a massive uphill task. We’ve got nothing to lose but first, we’ve got to defend better.

"We’ll give it a go. Anything is possible in life, because I didn’t think we’d get beat five tonight. We’ll certainly give it our best!"
 

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Well it all ended horifficly for us. We have a huge task if we are to even consider making it to the Millenium Stadium:

Bolton 5
Okocha 2, 80
Nolan 9
Giannakopoulos 17
N'Gotty 74


Aston Villa 2
Angel 20, 56

Watching us go down 3-0 inside the opening 17 minutes was unbelievable- I literally couldn't believe it. We were playing some nice football I thought- just our defence were dreadful.

The first 3 goals were all avoidable and were disappointing from our point of view. 3 of Bolton's 5 came from set pieces- I thought we would have learned from the Arsenal game...:eek:. I guess we know what we're working on in training for the next week or so.

The only positives we can take from the game are the 2 goals Angel added to his tally for the season. To be honest I don't think we'll win 3-0 like we have to in the 2nd leg- we've thrown it all away tonight. We had only conceeded one goal in the competition prior to this match- conceeding 5 in the 90 minutes gives you a clue as to how our defenders were performing.

Another disappointing night for us Villans- and like I say we have it all to do in the 2nd leg..
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yeah.. we were all left shell shocked after just under 20 minutes.. another thing that left us short of words was how empty the stadium was. I wish I was an unbiased spectator at that match cos it was a cracker...

as soon as we put it to 3-1 we thought we were gonna get back into this and we went loopy when we pulled it to 3-2. The fun stopped there though. A bit of trouble on the way out of the Reebok but nothin too drastic.

Mellberg had a poor game, we just didn't seem solid enough.. it appeared there was going to be a goal every Bolton attack.. Angel deserves a pat on the back for his efforts again. Hendrie got a lot of stick for messing up a free kick.. but Jay Jay... :eek:

Not sure if im going to the home leg now.. see how i feel having to pay 38 quid to see us get knocked out of a cup semi final by next week.

Up the Villa.

Lee.
 

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WHY WHY WHY WHY WHY?

What were we doing in that game? We conceded two soft goals early one, fought to get back in the match and then died a death! We rolled over and handed Bolton a ticket to the final! The lads should be ashamed of themselves!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
onto the home leg then..

Villa 0-1 Bolton

Djorkaeff with the goal. Think we spoilt the semi already and looking at the group of players we have i just dont think were going to build ourselves up enough to get 3. I can see us conceding an early goal. One goal conceded and we have no chance at all. Fingers crossed though, even though i've gotten rid of my ticket for this one.
 

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Can't stress how important it is that we don't concede at all on Tuesday. I think we have to go into this one with the attitude that we have got absolutely nothing to lose. We do have a few major advantages (Bolton w/out Okocha, Nolan; Only lost twice at VP this season....). If we go in with this mentality we could prevail and do the unthinkable. But I doubt it will happen, I think we will get the win, but will never look like winning comfortably like we have to. I think the game will be a scrappy one with not much in it:

Aston Villa 2
Angel
Barry


Bolton 1
Davies

I think Bolton have definitely done enough to have their Cup Final tickets- we handed it to them at the Reebok..
 

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ANGEL OUT FOR VILLA

Aston Villa have been dealt a blow ahead of their Carling Cup semi-final return clash against Bolton with leading scorer Juan Pablo Angel ruled out through injury.

The Colombian international, who has netted 16 times this season, has not recovered from a calf injury suffered in the 5-2 first leg defeat at the Reebok Stadium.

It means that either Marcus Allback or Peter Crouch, who have managed only one goal between them this season for Villa, will partner Darius Vassell.

Manager David O'Leary has no other fresh injury problems as Villa look to pull one of the biggest comebacks in the history of the competition although 10 years ago they trailed 3-0 to Tranmere in the first leg and went on to reach the final.


Team (from): Sorensen, Delaney, Mellberg, Johnsen, Dublin, Samuel, Hendrie, McCann, Whittingham, Barry, Hitzlsperger, Vassell, Crouch, Allback, De La Cruz, Ridgewell, Postma.
 

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This is a big blow for us and makes matters even more difficult for us in out attempt to reach the Millenium Stadium. The one thing we have to do tomorrow is score goals and the only man to do this consistantly for us this season is ruled out through injury :(

I withdraw my original prediction and am now going for:

Aston Villa 1
Vassell

Bolton 1
Davies
 

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O'LEARY: PLAYERS PRIMED FOR CUP COMEBACK

Aston Villa manager David O'Leary has revealed the determination among his players to pull off Mission Impossible when they entertain Bolton in the second leg of the Carling Cup semi-final.

O'Leary has sensed the huge disappointment enveloping his squad after abject defending left them with a mountain to climb following a 5-2 first-leg mauling at the Reebok Stadium.

But he believes captain Olof Mellberg and Co have finally erased the doom and gloom factor and are looking to make amends when they strive to pull back three goals at Villa Park despite being without injured leading goalscorer Juan Pablo Angel.

It is a similar scenario to 10 years ago when Villa trailed 3-0 at one stage of their semi-final with Tranmere in the same competition before recovering to win on penalties and then toppling Manchester United in the final.

O'Leary told the Press Association: "I have an honest bunch of players here and they know that they let themselves down in the first leg.

"It surprised me how badly we defended. I think that's why they have been so low the last few days because they know how poor they were in that way.

"They were quiet for a few days and it has taken that long to get last Wenesday out of the system but on Sunday I saw the first signs that they were beginning to pick themselves up for what lies ahead.

"I think they want to rectify things but talk is cheap and the bottom line is it's down to them when they go out onto that pitch. They've got a chance to make up for things. The onus is on them to do that.
 

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Well I guess that our manager has to be optimistic, but I hold out no hope and without Angel we don't have a chance! We'll struggle to even score and I think I'll watch Nigeria v Morocco instead.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
15 minutes gone... Hitzlsperger with a free kick.

Aston Villa 1-0 Bolton


wish i'd have gone now. atmosphere sounds amazing.
 

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Aston Villa 2-0 Bolton

They were brave, but we can't afford to have about 20 odd half chances and not take any of them, fair few penalty shouts.. one or two maybe were considerable. They made me proud though today, down to 10 men yet showed more passion than I have ever seen from the Villa boys. Villa fans were excellent today and a good 36000.crowd turnout too! Especially with it being on TV and on such a freezing cold evening.

Villa, Villaa, Villlaaaaaa....
 

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Yeah, we played well, and what a game. The lads were giving everything they had, creating a great atmosphere and a great game. The 5-4 aggregate score and 2-0 win on the night makes the tie look a lot more respectable than 5-2, so we did patch up a few things.

It was a good way to go out- with fight and determination- especially as we had to play most of the game with 10 men. We can focus on the league 100% now- Leicester City away on Saturday- let's bag some points :)...
 

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AGONY FOR 10-MAN VILLA

Bolton reached the final of the Carling Cup after a nerve-jangling 2-0 semi-final defeat against 10-man Aston Villa.

It is the first time in nine years the club will contest a major showpiece event and they will go to Cardiff's Millennium Stadium on February 29.

Villa reduced the three-goal deficit from the first leg when Thomas Hitzlsperger opened the scoring with a curling 20-yard free-kick.

But the game took a dramatic turn in the 38th minute when Gavin McCann was dismissed after challenging goalkeeper Juusi Jaaskelainen strongly and then appearing to slap Emerson Thome on the face which warranted a straight red card from referee Steve Bennett.

Villa grabbed a second goal two minutes from time when Jlloyd Samuel's effort deflected off Campo and beat Jaaskelainen.

The hosts threw everything at Bolton in the closing stages, but Sam Allardyce's held out to clinch a place in a final for the first time since 1995 when they lost to Liverpool in the League Cup final.
 

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MCCANN SORRY FOR SEEING RED

Aston Villa midfielder Gavin McCann has apologised to his team-mates for his sending off against Bolton in the second leg of the Carling Cup semi-final.

McCann, who had already been booked, was shown a straight red card by referee Steve Bennett for violent conduct after striking Bolton defender Emerson Thome in the face shortly before half-time.

His second dismissal of the campaign means that McCann, signed from Sunderland for £2million last summer, will have to serve a four-match suspension.

McCann is planning to make his own personal public apology for receiving his marching orders.

Villa striker Peter Crouch said: "Gavin has been superb for us all season but he just lost his head a little bit.

"Gavin was so disappointed in the dressing room and as soon as we came in for half-time he said sorry to all of the lads and the gaffer. It's one of those things and we have got to rally round him now. Like I said, he has been excellent for Villa all season."
 
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