Why oh why do managers have to do it? Is it because they just don’t trust their own instinct or is it because they think it makes them look clever? Well, you know what, most of the time they do it they just look like a mug. What am I talking about? Changing a winning system!
So, after two awful away performances, after which the Villa fans started to question Steve Bruce’s handling of the team (OK, well they had been doing that for months but this time they really meant it) Bruce seemed to stumble across a more attacking formation that blended youth with experience. To be frank, anything was more attack minded than the ‘lets see if we can hold them once we had scored’ methods we had been using.
Four goals were scored against Norwich City (but for their goalkeeper Gunn it could have been more) followed a few days later by another four put past Wigan Athletic. Admittedly, neither can be classed as one of the greats of English football but when you win by scoring four goals you have to take all the positives. Finally, it looked like Steve Bruce had found his winning formula.
So the obvious thing to do in the next game against Bristol City was to ring the changes, doh!!
Samba, Chester and Terry formed the ‘formidable’ three at the back as Bruce looked to shore up at the back – all it did was drag the oxygen out of the attacking force he’d had and Villa looked fairly average for the first twenty minutes.
Now, to give him his due, Bruce did then change the system again and revert to four in defence but that meant James Chester playing at right back until he could ‘waste’ a substitution at half time by bringing on Bree for Samba. Ultimately, that could have cost the win as it meant he couldn’t bring on Adomah later on in the game.
Blindingly obvious moral Bruce – don’t make changes when they aren’t needed!
You can watch the video of ‘Changes’ by clicking HERE