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Dave Woodhall’s Villa Blog

BRING ON THE ARSENAL

01-12-2007

Four wins in a row? That’s Villa’s best form this century. Dave Woodhall is looking forward optimistically to the visit of Arsenal.

After our away form’s started to look good we get the chance to really put ourselves to the test on Saturday with the visit of Arsenal.

Playing this lot can often be a bit of a guilty pleasure – they might be battering you but you can’t help enjoy watching them do it. This season, though, will be different. Oh yes.

As I’m forever saying, Villa’s big problem dating back to the days when Brian Little was in charge has been a lack of self-belief when we play the big teams. Even a month ago we’d have been dreading Saturday at 5.15. Now I can’t wait.

Watching Villa at Blackburn was conformation of what we’ve been hoping all year. Blackburn are a decent side, and they have the same aspirations we do. Villa destroyed them, as we did Middlesbrough last week.

With Portsmouth and Manchester City at home in the next few weeks, we could start to put some space between ourselves and our rivals for a European place.

The definition of success is regularly debated amongst Villa supporters. Some see it in terms of a Champions League place, while the traditionalists amongst us would rather win trophies than finish fourth, however much income that spurious honour might be worth.

I see success as being able to face any team, whatever the level, and know we can compete with them. I want any opponents to know that if they’re going to beat us, they’ll have to be at the top of their game.

I can see that being the case on Saturday, and that’s the best tribute I can pay to the efforts already made by Martin O’Neill. We’re nobody’s pushovers any more.

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