Matt and Matt. The two Matty’s. Tango… sorry, Targett and Cash. Any of those references would be adequate however, it may be a little easier, and more fitting to just say the ‘those two studs at full-back’.
Despite an infuriating sequence of events leading to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of – let’s be honest – an incredible Man City side, Matty Cash and Targett gave the two notable performances for Villa. To me, this comes as no surprise that Cash has had a big impact on Villa’s defensive improvement, yet the upturn in Targett’s defensive output has been one of the revelations of the season considering he would have been one of the first on the chopping block had I been manager.
As I look back to my feelings before last night’s game with West Brom, for the first time properly this season, I felt somewhat nervous. This is mainly due to the baggies having newly appointed Sam Allardyce at the helm. Although ‘Big Sam’s’ notorious style doesn’t strike fear into an opponent, his stubborn style of defending and our inability to see off Burnley last time out, did worry me.
The year is 2020; it is 187 years since Britain abolished slavery; 57 years since Martin Luther King had a dream and roughly 6 months since George Floyd could not breathe due to a police officer kneeling on his neck. Racism is systemic, institutional and still prevalent across the world. The horrific murder of George Floyd was filmed and it spread across the internet, causing another wave of black lives matter protests; but this was not the start of BLM. The movement actually began in 2013, after George Zimmerman was acquitted for the shooting of African-American teenager, Trayvon Martin. It then gained national recognition in 2014 after another young black man, this time named Michael Brown, was fatally shot by the Police in Ferguson. This time, it sparked big protests across America.
Reminiscent of last year, Aston Villa outclassed, outplayed and outperformed Arsenal on every front today. In spectacular fashion too, might I add. Making Arsenal the second top six team we have beaten in our opening seven games.
As we enter remembrance weekend, it’s important to remember those of the Villa family who serve and have served in our armed forces. Perhaps most poignantly we acknowledge those who served in the war which began our remembrance tradition. These men were often in the prime of their careers, yet volunteered to serve selflessly.
Some players continued to achieve as footballers after the end of the war. Some were never the same again, and some never returned at all. Today we remember them.