It has been a truly dire season for Aston Villa, who, after succumbing to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Bournemouth in their last Premier League outing, look all but set to compete in the Championship next season.
The Villa Park faithful have watched on as their hopelessly woeful stars have failed to show the desire required for a relegation scrap.
Well, Villa fans may well take heart from the showing of their Under-21 side against West Ham United on Monday night.
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Not only did the young Villans secure the win, but they were also involved in a fight that has now gone viral.
Indeed, as you can see below, a 19-man brawl broke out between Villa and West Ham players in the final minutes of proceedings.
Players from West Ham reacted after Villa youngster Kevin Toner initiated the fight after making two strong challenges. Following the mass brawl, Toner received his marching orders for his tackle on Jamal Hector-Ingram, but the decision from the referee failed to settle things down.
There are two ways to look at this one, of course; some will no doubt suggest that Monday's controversy further represents the troubles at Villa Park, while others will claim that the club's youngsters are showing the passion that has clearly been missing from the first-team.
You can see the scrap here:
There's every chance that Villa's young stars will be handed an opportunity to star in the Championship next season. As it stands, the future of the club is uncertain, but there's no reason why they won't turn to youth.
Caretaker manager Eric Black, however, is well aware that a change of mentality will be required for the club to return to the Premier League at the first attempt.
As per the Independent, Black stated: “It is a massive, massive challenge for any club to go down.
“You come from winning three games this season and if Aston Villa are in the Championship next season they’re going to have to win a minimum of 26 or 27 to get out of it.
“You’ve got a complete change of the expectation and pressure.
“Aston Villa will be like Manchester United if they go into the Championship and go to Rotherham, or wherever.
“It’s a huge, huge challenge but it’s not an impossible challenge.
“There has to be a strong mentality that runs through the group because you have some really difficult tasks out there on a Tuesday night when there’s not 40,000 people there and teams don’t make it easy for you to play.
“It’s a really tough division. Psychologically it’s a hard division and physically it’s a harder division than the Premier League at times because of the repetition of games.
“So the squad has to be constructed properly, otherwise you give yourself a mountain to climb.”
Will Aston Villa secure promotion next season? Have your say below!