Villa hit a tipping point with fresh loss
Aston Villa 0 Wigan Athletic 3: Paul Lambert has changed his tune and so have the Aston Villa supporters. The sight of a struggling Wigan Athletic walking all over Villa on their own turf proved to be the tipping point in a miserable season, as previously loyal fans vented their anger at a performance so inept that it forced Lambert to concede for the first time that his side are in a relegation fight.
The boos that greeted the final whistle were predictable on a day when Villa looked like a club sleepwalking towards the Championship. This was their third successive crushing defeat in the space of seven humiliating days in which 15 goals were conceded. Villa head to Swansea on New Year’s Day with the lowest goal tally in the league and the worst defensive record. Every alarm bell should be ringing.
Lambert’s regular post-match message that the team will “be fine” is kidding nobody; try telling the supporters who headed for the exits on Saturday with 34 minutes remaining that there is nothing to worry about.
The fans have been tremendously supportive of Lambert since he took over in the summer but faith is not blind. It is one thing to lose 4-0 at home against a resurgent Tottenham, but quite another to be thumped by an out-of-form Wigan.
Villa’s frailties from defence through to attack were brutally exposed by a Wigan side who never looked back from the moment Ivan Ramis headed them ahead in the third minute.
Although Brett Holman hit the bar for Villa before the break, the game was over when Wigan scored twice inside the opening 11 minutes of the second half. Emmerson Boyce swept home the second before Arouna Kone rounded Brad Guzan for the third.
It was the perfect result for Roberto Martinez’s side before Manchester United’s visit tomorrow, when Wigan hope to reprise April’s memorable 1-0 victory.