Game #5328

Season | 2014-15 |

Matchday | #28 |
League Game | #25 |
Premier League Match-week | #25 |  
Manager Game | #115 |
Tuesday, 10 February 2015
Premier League | Away | Hull City | KC Stadium | 21,467 | 

Game Summary

Manager | Paul Lambert | 

KO | 19.45 |
Referee | Michael Oliver | 

HT Score | 0-1 |
FT Score | 0-2 |

FT Result | Lost |

Last 5 Games | LWLLL | 

League Position | 18th | -2 |

Line Up |

GK Brad Guzan |
RB Alan Hutton |
BOOKED | 41' | 
CB Ciaran Clark |
CB Jores Okore |
RB Aly Cissokho |
M Fabian Delph | 
M Ashley Westwood |
W Scott Sinclair | 
SUB OFF | 59' |
W Carles Gil |
F Andreas Weimann |
SUB OFF | 46' |
F Gabriel Agbonlahor | BOOKED | 56' | 

Substitutes |

CF Christian Benteke for F Andreas Weimann | 46’ | 
M Joe Cole for W Scott Sinclair | 59’ |


Unused Substitutes |

GK Shay Given
CB Ron Vlaar
M Leandro Bacuna
M Tom Cleverley
M Carlos Sánchez 

Cards |

 Yellow | Alan Hutton | 41’ |

 Yellow | Gabriel Agbonlahor | 56’ | 

Team Stats |

Starting XI Average Age | 26.01 | 

Oldest Player | GK Brad Guzan | 30.44 |

Youngest Player | W Carles Gil | 22.23 |

Unavailable |

Injury |

CF Libor Kozák |

CB Philippe Senderos |

CB Nathan Baker | 

Loaned Out |

CF Nicklas Helenius | Aalborg BK | 9 July 2014 - 30 June 2015 | 

M Yacouba Sylla | Kayseri Erciyesspor | 14 July 2014 - 30 June 2015 | 

W Aleksandar Tonev | Celtic | 11 August 2014 - 30 June 2015 | 

LB Joe Bennett | Brighton & Hove Albion | 20 August 2014 - 4 May 2015 |

D Enda Stevens | Doncaster Rovers | 6 November 2014 - 4 May 2015 | 

F Darren Bent | Derby County | 3 January 2015 - 4 May 2015 | 

M Chris Herd | Wigan Athletic | 26 January 2015 - 19 February 2015 | 

LB Antonio Luna | Spezia Calcio | 2 February 2015 - 30 June 2015 | 

Match Stats |

Possession F | 59
Possession A | 41
Shots F | 10
Shots A | 7
Shots on Target F | 4
Shots on Target A | 2
Corners F | 7
Corners A | 3
Fouls F | 11
Fouls A | 15

Match Report

Sky Sports

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Aston Villa dropped into the Premier League relegation zone after a disappointing 2-0 defeat at Hull City on Tuesday night.

Debutant Dame N’Doye proved the key figure in a scrappy contest, setting up Nikica Jelavic’s 22nd-minute opener before scoring himself to secure only a third home win of the season.


The Tigers move up to 15th in the table but Villa, whose fans held up a ‘Lambert Out’ banner for most of the match, slip into the bottom three following a fifth straight defeat.

Villa came into the clash without a victory in their last nine league games but after an improved performance against league leaders

Chelsea at the weekend, the travelling support were expecting a more spirited showing than they have had to endure of late.

However, from the word go, Lambert’s side lacked a cutting edge, and it was deadline-day signing N’Doye who gave the game some attacking intent.

Goalkeeper Allan McGregor launched the ball upfield where N’Doye cushioned it with a neat first touch before threading a pass for Jelavic. He shot low, but was fortunate to see the ball loop gently into the roof of the net after a huge deflection off Ciaran Clark.

Villa offered little in return. They had a solitary chance to level before the break, Tom Huddlestone conceding a free-kick in an inviting position, but Carles Gil’s effort curled a yard wide.

After the interval it was more of the same.Lambert made the logical switch at half-time, Christian Benteke coming on for the ineffective Andreas Weimann. Villa needed the Belgian to rediscover his best form, but he was again starved of service.
Robbie Brady shot just wide as Hull looked to extend their lead but the home fans didn’t have to wait long to have their nerves settled.


Ahmed Elmohamady’s cross and Gaston Ramirez’s header combined to pick out N’Doye at the far post and although his instinctive first attempt was smothered at point-blank range by Brad Guzan, the Senegalese hitman slotted his second attempt coolly into the net 16 minutes from time.

McGregor denied Villa a much-needed goal, beating out Ashley Westwood’s drive then recovering to palm Benteke’s follow-up over the bar in the dying embers of the match, but Lambert’s men must realise quickly they are involved in a relegation battle, and have to improve quickly.

Player ratings

Hull City: McGregor (6), Elmohamady (6), Dawson (7), Bruce (7), McShane (7), Brady (6), Huddlestone (6), Livermore (6), Meyler (5), Jelavic (7), N’Doye (8).

Used subs: Ramirez (6), Hernandez (5), Quinn (5).

Aston Villa: Guzan (6), Hutton (6), Okore (6), Clark (6), Cissokho (7), Sinclair (4), Westwood (5), Delph (5), Weimann (4), Agbonlahor (5), Gil (7).

Used subs: Cole (6), Benteke (6).

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert says he is aware of fan discontent and says his team's remaining Premier League fixtures are "13 cup finals".

Villa have not won in 10 Premier League matches and dropped into the relegation zone after a 2-0 defeat at Hull.

Some fans held up 'Lambert Out' banners, and now the Birmingham Mail has called for the manager's sacking.

Lambert said: "I was aware of [the discontent] months ago. I've told the players, they've got 13 cup finals."

Their haul of 12 league goals this season is the lowest total after 25 games in Premier League history.

The team's slump has prompted local newspaper the Birmingham Mail to weigh in against the Villa boss, tweeting a picture of its front page saying that 'Lambert Must Go' with the accompanying hashtag, #lambertout.

"This great club is now on its knees and the Holte End is hurting," reads its editorial. "We can no longer stand by and watch that happen.

"Today the Birmingham Mail makes one simple, stark request to the Aston Villa board: sack the manager."

Lambert, however, says he believes his players have the quality to avoid dropping out of the top flight, where they have been since 1988.

He said: "I know they're more than capable of doing it. There are seven or eight teams in it and we just have to get ourselves out of it.

"We've got to keep battling away and keep our heads up. We're certainly in a fight. You have to keep going and keep being positive.

"I can't describe how we feel as a group. I've said to the lads: 'There are two ways to go - you can meet it head on or you buckle under it. Make sure you don't buckle for your own career.'

"It's the biggest 13 games of their careers coming up."

Paul Lambert Sacked

Report from BBC Sport, 12 February 2015

Aston Villa have sacked manager Paul Lambert after dropping into the Premier League relegation zone.

Tuesday's 2-0 loss to fellow strugglers Hull City was the West Midlands club's 10th league game without a win.

They have also managed just 12 league goals from 25 games - the lowest in Premier League history.

First-team coach Scott Marshall and goalkeeping coach Andy Marshall have taken temporary charge with 13 league matches remaining.

Villa's decision to sack Lambert came just hours after the Birmingham Mail started a campaign to oust the former Norwich boss.

Their front and back pages were covered with the message: "Birmingham Mail says: Lambert Must Go!"

It was accompanied by the hashtag #lambertout.

Birmingham Mail editor Marc Reeves told BBC Midlands Today that his newspaper wanted to give "hundreds and thousands" of Villa fans the opportunity to have their say on Lambert.

"It's a voice that needs to be listened to and the Mail wanted to play its part in amplifying that voice to the Aston Villa board," he said.

BBC Radio 5 live's Pat Murphy:

"Villa owner Randy Lerner was determined to ride out the storm and, with Paul Lambert, had the best relationship he'd had with any Villa manager.

"I still believe Lerner will sell up during the summer. To a certain extent he's protecting his investment here.

"He'll be terrified about Villa going down - they have not been relegated since 1986-87 - and they look as if they could.

"I don't believe they will. They have a very good squad of players. They just need some sophisticated, modern coaching."

The reasons

Report from the Birmingham Mail, 12 February 2015

1) Results

Managers will often say it is a results business - and ultimately, that is what they are judged on.

The statistics doing the rounds about Lambert’s reign are damning. And it is not just this season, but every season so far.

You’ve seen all the numbers on those fancy graphics that fill the screen on Sky Sports News every now and then.

There’s too many to mention here, but Played: 101, Points: 101, Won: 25, Lost: 50, Drawn: 26, Goals for: 98, Goals against: 164 tells you all you need to know.

At Norwich that record would not have been good enough, at Aston Villa it is evidence that he was out of his depth.

2) Chopped and changed

Before he rolled up at Villa, the word on the Glaswegian gaffer was that he was an astute tactician able to change the course of matches mid-game with a tweak in personnel or approach.

Evidence of that has certainly been in short supply, but that is not to say he hasn’t tinkered.

In actual fact he has arguably tinkered too much, not during games, but with his own philospophy. Villa under his management has suffered an ongoing identity crisis - when it comes to their playing style.

Lambert has constantly come up with new ways to lose matches - whether it has been route one football or the possession game.

A lack of width and cutting edge has generally undermined their efforts, as did a leaky defence in previous seasons.

Until the current campaign, his team was packed with Premier League rookies, most of whom would surely have benefited from a set style of play.

Not that the recruitment policy has been particularly consistent either, swaying from young and hungry to cheap and foreign through to old and infirm.

3) With friends like that...

Lambert’s choice of assistant managers left a lot to be desired.

First of all there were the sackings of his close allies Ian Culverhouse and Gary Karsa last spring.

The backroom scandal unravelled at the same time as Villa’s season.

Then there was the Roy Keane appointment - a road rage waiting to happen, even if it did yield the 10 points from the first four games that may yet save Villa.

What are we to make of the fact Villa have not appointed a new No.2 to replace Keane?

The cynics will suggest that Lambert does not want a ready-made successor in the shadows to step in if the axe does fall.

The reality is probably that the hierarchy no longer trust Lambert to make this kind of appointment by himself, hence the search for a director of football to support him.

4) Mr Motivator?

We could debate his hits and misses in the transfer market forever, but like many managers he has success stories and flops when it comes to signing players.

The bigger question is whether a manager who proclaims the current group of footballers are the strongest squad he has assembled at Villa is getting the best out of them.

Jose Mourinho was making mischief when he cheekily suggested after Chelsea’s win on Saturday that Villa boasted one of the best squads in the Premier League - and Lambert accused the Special One of trying to pile pressure on him.

But Villa surely now have one of the strongest squads in the bottom half of the table and, although the players themselves must take responsibility, much of the blame lies with the manager.

At Hull there were accusations that the players were going through the motions. As for losing the dressing room... it’s still where it’s always been - between the players’ car park and the tunnel - only now its inhabitants are failing to be inspired by their manager.

Any mini successes seem to be in spite of him rather than because of him.

5) Communication breakdown

Dealing with the media was not Lambert’s managerial forte at Villa - and he has never pretended that it was.

The problem he encountered in B6 was that at Randy Lerner’s Villa the manager was THE spokesman for the club, although CEOs Paul Faulkner and Tom Fox did try to get a different voice across occasionally.

There was a certain degree of sympathy for Lambert because - owing to the absence of the silent billionaire - he oftened faces questions that were not part of his remit to answer.

But Lambert did not help himself by swatting away questions which very much were his remit.

When there is a vacuum of information at the club like there had been for too long, it was not fair for Lambert to hide behind a glossary of stock responses.

In fact it was an insult to the intelligence of the paying public.

If lines of communication are clear it allows fans to understand why certain decisions - even erroneous ones - have been made.

Only on extremely rare occasions did Lambert mix with supporters at forums or functions and this distance between manager and fanbase was far from helpful.