Aston Villa fell deeper into a relegation scrap on Tuesday night following a hugely disappointing 2-0 defeat at fellow strugglers Hull City, with winter arrival Scott Sinclair providing little impact on his first start for his new club.
Nikica Jelavic scored a deflected opener from debutant Dame N’Doye’s through ball, before the Senegalese striker sealed the result 15 minutes from the end to consign Villa to their fifth straight league defeat.
Bottom of the top-flight’s form table after 10 games without a win, Paul Lambert’s side have now dropped into the relegation zone after their latest setback, with their scoring struggles serving as the root cause of the problem.
The club’s haul of 12 league goals this season is the lowest total after 25 games in Premier League history and, with Christian Benteke being dropped amid a run of poor form, it’s hard to see who else is going to step up to make the difference.
Arriving on loan from Manchester City last month, Sinclair’s introduction into the line-up was supposed to provide an extra attacking spark but, after being frozen out of the first-team picture at the Etihad Stadium, his lack of sharpness was more than evident.
The struggling winger had seen just 27 minutes of action this season prior to joining Villa and, after a match in which he proved a virtual passenger, it looks like it’s going to take some work to get him back into the form which saw him hailed as a future England starter during his time at Swansea City.
Lasting less than hour before going off for Joe Cole, here’s how the claret and blue faithful reacted on Twitter to his contribution on the night.
Reckon playing grealish would have been a better option than Sinclair #avfc— Alex Jones (@jonah_rocks8) February 10, 2015
Scott Sinclair hasn’t played all 90 minutes of a match since 2012 apparently #avfc— Nayson (@Nayson) February 10, 2015
I'm not sure what we expect when we bring in players like Scott Sinclair, who hasn't played for a few yrs. Our signings been dire #AVFC— G-Mac (@GreggMac11) February 10, 2015
Says everything about #avfc current regime that Scott Sinclair, a loan player, wears the #9 shirt. So many greats have graced our #9 and #10— MrAstonVilla (@villa1st) February 10, 2015
What does Sinclair do? Totally anonymous tonight— Daniel (@villa_dann) February 10, 2015
Subbing off Scott Sinclair for Joe Cole tells you everything about Villas lack of quality— Joel Cox (@JoelSCox) February 10, 2015