Aston Villa confirmed relegation after losing at Old Trafford to Manchester United via a goal from the prodigal Marcus Rashford. As the young teenager celebrated an entire club hung its head low, knowing all too well that they would be playing in the second tier of English football for the first time since even before the Premier League was established. The Hype Train looks at the ironic party that is the relegation of Aston Villa, a team constantly bet against as favourites to lose every match. The relegation party comes as a smile to many who have pitted their FPL heroes against the floundering Villains, in what has been a season of “when” rather than “if” they sink.
JOLEON LESCOTT STATEMENT
Usually we talk about players and teams that are on the hype, but in retrospect any team facing Aston Villa was heavily favoured and in doing so hyped up for having a good gameweek. It has been made easy to say that defeat was inevitable when they consistently were outplayed by nearly every team. We start of course with one of the most bizarre statements from a player who has just been relegated, and this is summary of why things are so bad at the club. Joleon Lescott, a central defender and former FPL option in his time at West Brom, came out with this enraging gem where he said they held “pride” in their loss to Man Utd.
“We knew before the game what we had to do but coming to Old Trafford is never easy no matter what situation you're in," said Lescott.
"It's about results so regardless of how we played in patches today we are relegated. We need to find a way to get out of this run of defeats. Now it's confirmed maybe it's a weight off the shoulders and we can give these fans what they deserve, some performances.”
Unfortunately for Lescott it is now too late, the Villa fans deserved better, and it is an insult to their fans. FPL managers on the other hand will still be looking at Villa as an easy target, now things are settled in their camp you’d expect them to continue capitulating even further as they have nothing left to fight for.
ASTON VILLA IN NUMBERS
We don’t need to see the outcome of all thirty eight games to see where the season is heading for Villa anymore, so we can do a statistical review now with the anticipation it will only get worse.
2014/15 Relegated Teams
Aston Villa does not compare well to even last seasons relegated teams, they have performed so poorly that they already have the same number of losses that QPR racked up with four games to go before the end of the season. Each team outperformed Aston Villa in a hotly contested relegation battle. Hull, Burnley, and QPR all scored more and conceded less on their way back to the Championship. Aston Villa in comparison is one of the worst performing teams to be relegated in a Premier League season. The season may not be over but it is mathematically impossible for them to climb above 20th, there season is officially over.
2015/16 Record (as of GW36)
2015/16 Performance (as of GW35)
FPL Goals: 26
FPL Assists: 24
FPL Clean Sheets: 5 (no Villa defender has obtained five individual clean sheets) FPL Bonus Points: 61
Goals Conceded: 72
Dream Team Players: 7
The relegation party continues for another four weeks and FPL managers will be licking their lips at potential options against the Villains, and at this stage it doesn’t look like many more results will be picked up. We will state the fixtures and then advise on players that might be worth their money soon enough.
GW37: Newcastle (H)
GW38: Arsenal (A)
These are two tough fixtures, including the Newcastle fixture as they look to secure their own survival. Last year Arsenal rioted against Villa and we expect even more chaos on the final day. Any striker against them would be a good match; so the likes of Pelle, Mitrovic, Cisse, and Welbeck would be your priority in the respective gameweeks.
Defenders would also be a recommended shout to back against Villa, as they just don’t have any attacking rhythm to unsettle defences it is regarded as easy points. Lascelles has been a rock since coming into the Toon squad, and Bellerin would be solid options for any of these gameweeks as would Nacho Monreal. Attack and defence are the best options against Aston Villa, they rarely score, and they always concede so you could even double down without having to worry too much.
No FPL Options
Unlike other relegated teams Aston Villa have had almost little to no FPL options, they started strong with an impressive away with at Bournemouth but since then the penny dropped on the entire club. In hindsight is probably had more to do with first game jitters on part of the Cherries who have otherwise played decent football. If we reflect on last year and the teams who got relegated you will see the stark comparison as to why Villa had absolutely nothing to offer FPL managers in comparison to other sinking teams.
Burnley had Tom Heaton, Kieran Trippier, George Boyd, and Danny Ings in a campaign marred with inconsistent results. QPR had Charlie Austin, Leroy Fer, Matt Phillips, and Eduardo Vargas to some extend in a season where they just didn't pick up enough points away from home. Lastly we had Hull City who had Dame N'Doye, Nikica Jelavic, Ahmed Elmohamady, and Andrew Robertson. Each of these teams had something to offer, players who featured consistently in their battle to beat the drop. Aston Villa haven't been consistent enough, they also dropped Micah Richards for no apparent reason and would rotate their forward line. Jordan Ayew also spent a large chunk of the season suspended or on the bench amidst some brilliant solo goals. Jordan Amavi was the only bright spark before his injury but someone who spends the season out injured isn't considered an FPL option.
An unsettled line-up is something attributed to their relegation, but also why nobody could trust there players for points. The man with most starting appearances is Idrissa Gueye who has twenty nine starts this season, and then followed up with Joleon Lescott with twenty six. Unlike the previous season or even the teams around Aston Villa at this point their chaotic line-up has been cause for concern and a large part of the problem. Goals were also a problem, Ayew and Gestede have managed only nine goals between them and the Villains only had eight goal-scorers so far this term, and without a defence to provide any reassurance over points they have literally had nothing going for them.
It is only logical to say the only options in games featuring Aston Villa are always on the opposition team. This season has seen people ruthlessly backing against the Birmingham club and rightfully so, they have delivered plenty of FPL points for teams facing them. Many will be celebrating FPL strategy in choosing players competing against them.
Top Five Players
DEF: Joleon Lescott – 76pts
FWD: Jordan Ayew – 75pts
FWD: Rudy Gestede – 73pts
MID: Ashley Westwood – 71pts
GOA: Brad Guzan – 62pts
If you actually think about the points players get based on appearance points alone, Villa players appear to be just that even if they have goals. They have rotated fairly heavily in attempt of fixing their mistakes, to no avail. By finishing thirty games with two points players are on roughly sixty points, after thirty eight around seventy six points. Lescott who is their top player may have three goals to his name this season but these flashes in the pan do not compare to when he is constantly on zero points for the number of goals they concede. Their midfield and attackers rarely score which makes them inconsistent options. Nobody has really given any thought as to their players who do not represent any FPL value.
Everybody knew for a long time it would come to relegation for Aston Villa, to many neutrals it has been a long time coming, but for the legitimate fans who attend the games they see a team who hasn't given their all for the badge and are rightfully pessimistic over any sources of hope the club may have. It has been easy to ignore Aston Villa from an FPL perspective because they have not been on any hype all season, and it is an ironic statement to say that every week we check who Aston Villa were playing because they are usually easy sources of points. People have celebrated their players coming up against Aston Villa, they have been a predictable performer in a season laced with chaos and many will celebrate this constant in a season of many changes. There are still four games for Aston Villa where the party looks set to continue
Will Aston Villa return the the Premier League? That is a long way off, but if the running of the club is anything to go by then no, Fulham believed they would return instantly and now they are on the fringes of potential relegation to League One. This will be Villa's first season in the Championship since the Premier League era began and there are many more experiences teams in that division that know how to play well in that league. There are no guarantees anymore about an easy promotion as it has been a difficult challenge for any promoted team. Look at Bournemouth, they are better for doing it right, and with the mentality surrounding the club there must be a sinking feeling it could be a long wait for a return.