I found that game maddening even before Semedo’s horror show.
We played like the away side, allowing Villa to dictate the play and just sat in waiting to break.
On another day, yes, Fabio’s effort goes in off the post or one of Dendoncker’s finds a way past Martinez, but a narrow win instead of a narrow defeat wouldn’t have changed my view on the performance.
If we’re going to play with one less body in defence, we have to see more of the ball further forward and be more proactive in our attacking play.
I know Nuno believes you can control a game without the ball, but I felt we were stretched too many times by Villa and a moment would always arrive.
Typically it came via the last kick of the game, with our Barcelona full-back getting the wrong side and stupidly piling into McGinn.
I wanted to believe Semedo would improve but you’re increasingly watching his performances behind your hands, waiting for that moment of implosion.
Surely now is the time to giver Hoever a run in the side?
Much like Coady’s brain fart last week, we simply can’t keep giving teams presents when our own Goals For column is so laughably sub-par.
And why were we defending so desperately anyway?
With Villa down to 10 they were just lobbing diagonals into the corners as gold shirts repeatedly failed to clear.
The initial foul by Coady to allow them up the pitch and build to the penalty incident was idiotic, barging into Watkins with him pinned to the touchline.
It’s all these fine margins that the players just aren’t quite getting right.
Fabio was a positive for me, who showed enough in his overall play to suggest he can be a useful player.
Will he replace what Raul gives us? Absolutely not.
But there’s movement and tenacity that suggests he could get a few goals to ease us through a difficult moment.
And it’s going to get very difficult this month with a series of horrid looking fixtures.
We need to buckle-up and get ready, because I fear it’s getting worse before it gets better.