Revenge On Aston Villa So Sweet For Newcastle Fans
As Newcastle fans it’s been a long time since we’ve been able to stop glancing over our shoulders but finally we seem to be heading onwards and upwards and have a team that our amazing fans can be proud of.
It wasn’t too long ago when many fans, myself included, were worried about the likes of Everton, Liverpool, and dare I say it, Sunderland overtaking us in the league. How foolish do we look now that Newcastle have already guaranteed themselves European football next season and currently sit 14 points ahead of Everton, 16 ahead of Liverpool and a monumental 18 in front of Sunderland (with a game in hand)?
Something about this feels right and our loyal fans deserve something to sing about. In fact I’ve rather quite enjoyed discussing with fellow Mags the various outcomes we can expect at the end of the season. Can we finish inside the top 4? Do Chelsea have what it takes to win the Champions League? Will we be happy with the Europa League if they do? Is it mathematically possible for us to still win the league? Okay, maybe not the last question, but you get my point.
In fact, things are going so well this season that it has been very rare that I’ve glanced at the bottom half of the table, until I read that Aston Villa had again been defeated last night, this time at the hands of Bolton.
Now I can’t speak for every Newcastle fan but the majority I know would love nothing more than to see Aston Villa relegated this season, purely for the abuse they gave us on the 24th May 2009 when an unfortunate Damien Duff own goal consigned us to the Championship.
The pain felt that day will never leave me as the whole of Newcastle sunk to its knees and whilst I expected abuse from Sunderland fans that have long lived in our shadow, I expected a lot more dignity from the Aston Villa supporters. Instead they revelled in Newcastle’s fall from grace and I will never forget the ‘Who’s your next Messiah, Ant or Dec?’ and the ‘Sob on the Tyne’ banners, not to mention the numerous ‘relegation parties’ that Villa fans held.
In the past a few people have suggested that had the roles been reversed that day, Newcastle fans would have been exactly the same, according to unwritten terrace law that gives fans the right to give out stick. However, I doubt that Newcastle fans would have gone as far as making banners and for me Villa lacked a lot of class that day.
It wouldn’t have been so bad had Villa also been struggling in the league but as it happens they had their best season in decades, finishing in the top 6 on 62 points and securing themselves European football. Surely then all signs and banners should have been in praise of their team as opposed to laughing at United’s expense – Let’s not forget, we weren’t actually relegated until the 90 minutes were up, yet the banners had still been prepared.
In hindsight, going down was probably the best thing that could have happened to us, particularly as it helped rid us of players like Martins, Viduka and Owen who clearly did not want to play for our club but this didn’t make the heartbreak any easier to take.
As fans will no doubt remember though, we came up at the earliest convenience and although tipped as relegation favourites we humped Aston Villa 6-0 at St James’ Park. Many would say this was as good a form of revenge as any but personally I would like nothing more than to see Villa consigned to the same humiliation we received that fateful day and a year in the fizzy pop league might teach them a lesson.
As it stands, Aston Villa currently sit in 15th just 3 points outside of the relegation zone and having picked up only 12 points since the turn of the year from a possible 48, things don’t look good.
I will obviously be cheering on Newcastle United this weekend and hoping that Arsenal, Spurs and Chelsea drop points but as fate would have it this will also affect Villa.
Take this weekend for example, the preference for all Geordies will be that we beat Wigan (obviously), Stoke beat Arsenal, Bolton beat Sunderland, QPR beat Chelsea, Blackburn beat Spurs and West Brom beat Villa. If all of these results come in (worth a cheeky punt) then the league table will look like this:
3 Arsenal 65
4 Newcastle 65
5 Tottenham 59
6 Chelsea 58
16 Aston Villa 36
17 Bolton 36
18 Wigan 34
19 Blackburn 34
20 Wolves 23
This 6 point lead would almost guarantee us a top 4 finish and leave Villa sitting nervously 2 points out of the relegation zone with a tricky trip to Spurs the following week. Villa fans will also be aware that if they lose to Spurs and one team can take all 3 points from the game between Wigan and Blackburn on the same day, they will be resigned to the bottom 3.
Imagine that. Newcastle United sitting pretty having gatecrashed the ‘big 4’ and Aston Villa almost relegated. It’s a funny old game my friends, and sometimes, just sometimes, revenge is nicely served up. Now, where are those old bed sheets?
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