The Europa League semi-final second leg Thursday evening in Valencia is the game that has become our most critical one so far this season, all our eggs are in one basket now and we cannot afford to slip up.
We cannot kid ourselves that a two-goal margin is enough of a cushion for us to relax, Liverpool proved last night that first leg leads can be overcome against even the very best.
There are many things we should worry about and I recall doing a similar article prior to the Brighton game and I have to blow my own trumpet a little here and declare I feel like Nostradamus now as I almost nailed everything that did go wrong and we must avoid doing the same against Valencia or our season will be over.
Avoid trying to park the bus.
That will not work, why? Because our defence is just not good enough, the best form of defence is being on the offence and that is where we are at our most potent.
Win the battle for the midfield.
Too often we have lost the midfield battle and when we have, we lose. It is not rocket science and we do have the players that can control the middle of the park as long as they turn up.
Quieten the crowd.
The Mestalla will be full to capacity and we will have just 2500 fans and you can take it to the bank that if Valencia score early their fans will go mental and we will be in serious trouble. On the other hand, if we score first or keep Los Che at bay watch how quick their fans turn on their own team.
Don’t be complacent
It really is easy to be complacent when you have a two-goal advantage but history is littered with teams that have taken that attitude and come unstuck, we have to enter this game and play it as if it was 0-0.
Win the minor battles
There will be many minor battles all over the field and we have to win the majority of them, our defenders have to contain their forwards, we have to win the 50/50 balls, we have to win the aerial battles and our forwards have to harras their defenders non stop. If we win the small battles we will win the war.