Season | 1979-80 |
Matchday | #3 |
League Match-week | #3 |
Manager Game | #264 |
Saturday, 25 August 1979
Football League | Division One | Home | Bristol City | Villa Park | 25,526 |
Manager | Ron Saunders |
Referee | G. Nolan, Stockport |
FT Result | Lost |
FT Score | 0-2 |
Last 5 Games | LWDWL |
Line Up |
GK Jimmy Rimmer |
RB Kenny Swain |
D Gary Williams | LEFT FIELD INJURED | 75' |
D Allan Evans |
CB Ken McNaught |
M Colin Gibson |
M Gordon Cowans |
M Tony Morley |
M Gary Shelton |
F John Deehan |
F Brian Little | SUB OFF | 25' |
M Ivor Linton for F Brian Little | 25' |
M Dennis Mortimer |
M Alex Cropley |
Team Stats |
Starting XI Average Age | 23.63 |
Oldest Player | GK Jimmy Rimmer | 31.56 |
Youngest Player | D Gary Williams | 18.70 |
*Monday 27 August 1979*
*Birmingham Daily Post*
Too young, too green
By KEN SHELDON
Aston Villa manager Ron Saunders this morning sets about the task of finding 11 fit men to play in tomorrow night's Football League Cup second round, first leg tie at Colchester.
Brian Little, Alex Cropley and Gary Williams are out of the reckoning, victims of the injury jinx which continues to plague Villa Park.
Little pulled a muscle high up in his back in Saturday's 2-0 defeat by Bristol City and Saunders confessed after the game: "It's such an unusual injury we have no idea how long it will take to heal.
"It could turn out to be one of those niggling things that takes three or four months to clear, or it may take only three or four days."
Williams must await the results of an X-ray on a badly-bruised ankle which forced him off the field five minutes from the end of Saturday's game, and Cropley, whose ankle is back in plaster, looks like having another lengthy spell out of action.
But there is some brighter news for Saunders. Mortimer has shaken off the effects of a groin strain and should return to give much-needed drive and guidance in mid-field.
Villa's problems do not end with the injury crisis. Saturday's performance was their worst in two years, casting doubts about their ability to hold their own in the First Division this season.
Once again, Villa paid for relying too heavily on inexperience, losing a game that should have provided an easy two points.
Saunders recognised the deficiency: "We lost 2-0 and our goalkeeper never had a shot to save. We are trying to play more open football but in doing that we are being pulled apart in the middle
"It's as frustrating for us as it is for the supporters . But you can't expect to win championships with kids. We hare so many injuries at. the moment that there is no-one left to take the weight off the youngsters."
It was Villa's inexperience that cost them the lead after 18 minutes. Finnish international Pertti Jantunen hit a hard, low cross in from the right, two defenders stuck out a boot and the ball bobbed up nicely for the unmarked Mabutt to loop a header over Rimmer.
City added the final touch in the last minute when Ritchie scored from the penalty spot after he had been brought down by substitute Linton.