Game |#5164

Season | 2010-11 |

Matchday | #41 |
League Game | #33 |
Premier League Match-week | #31 |  
Manager Game | #34 |
Saturday, 16 April 2011
Premier League | Away | West Ham United | Upton Park | 34,672 |  

Game Summary

Manager | Gérard Houllier |

KO | 15.00 |
Referee | Mark Halsey | 
HT Score | 1-1 |

FT Score | 2-1 |
FT Result | Won |

Last 5 Games | LLDWW | 

Scorers | Darren Bent | 36’ | Gabby Agbonlahor | 90’ |

Assists | Luke Young | 36’ | Ashley Young | 90’ |

League Position | 9th | +5 |

Line Up |

GK Brad Friedel |
RB Luke Young |
ASSIST | 36' |
RB Kyle Walker |
CB Richard Dunne |
CB James Collins |
M Nigel Reo-Coker | 
M Stiliyan Petrov |
W Stewart Downing |
W Ashley Young |
ASSIST | 90' |
F Darren Bent | GOAL | 36' |
CF Emile Heskey | SUB OFF | 78' |

Substitutes |

F Gabriel Agbonlahor GOAL | 90' | for CF Emile Heskey | 78’ |

Unused Substitutes |

GK Andy Marshall
M Robert Pirès
W Marc Albrighton
M Jean Makoun
CB Ciaran Clark
CB Carlos Cuéllar

Team Stats |

Starting XI Average Age | 29.42 | 

Oldest Player | GK Brad Friedel | 39.94 |

Youngest Player | RB Kyle Walker | 20.90 |

Unavailable |
Bomb Squad |

M Moustapha Salifou |

RB Habib Beye |

LB Stephen Warnock | 

Loaned Out |

D Shane Lowry | Sheffield United | 1 January 2011 - 1 May 2011 |

GK Brad Guzan | Hull City | 1 January 2011 - 8 May 2011 | 

CF John Carew | Stoke City | 21 January 2011 - 26 May 2011 | 

M Jonathan Hogg | Portsmouth | 25 January 2011 - 31 May 2011 |

M Stephen Ireland | Newcastle United | 31 January 2011 - 31 May 2011 |

D Eric Lichaj | Leeds United | 9 February 2011 - 31 May 2011 |  

F Nathan Delfouneso | Burnley | 5 March 2011 - 1 May 2011 | 

Match Stats |
Possession F | 50
Possession A | 50
Shots F | 21
Shots A | 12
Shots on Target F | 11
Shots on Target A | 7
Corners F | 11
Corners A | 5
Fouls F | 3
Fouls A | 8

 On this day 16 April 2011 

Gérard Houllier’s disastrous and demoralising 34 games in charge effectively came to an end. Ironically two wins had pushed the club to 9th when they had been languishing in 16th place just a week earlier but that should not distract from the fact that Houllier had turned the previous season's 6th placed team and League Cup runners up into a shadow of the side they had previously been. Illness forced Houllier to relinquish the duties to which he would never return. He was not missed. But his legacy of failure, poor man management, errant transfer decisions and player ostracism continued much to the detriment of the club he left behind. 

Match Report


BBC Sport

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Gabriel Agbonlahor’s injury-time header earned Aston Villa a deserved victory over fellow strugglers West Ham United after a dominant second-half display.*

The Hammers had the perfect start when Robbie Keane fired them ahead from six yards inside two minutes.

But Darren Bent headed Villa level from Luke Young’s cross and they carved out a succession of chances after that.

Bent and the superb Ashley Young both went close on several occasions before substitute Agbonlahor won it late on.

The England man’s calm close-range header from Young’s floated right-wing cross earned Villa a win that puts them within touching distance of safety.

Manager Gerard Houllier has endured a tough time at Villa Park but his side are now seven points above the bottom three with five games remaining.

However Wigan’s 3-1 victory over Blackpool means West Ham have dropped to second bottom and they face Chelsea and Manchester City in their next two games.

But an expectant home crowd, buoyed by a moving tribute to legendary former skipper Bobby Moore and the work carried out by the cancer fund set up in his memory, could hardly have enjoyed a better start to their afternoon.

A half-cleared corner was headed back into the danger area by Thomas Hitzlsperger and Keane, showing great awareness to stay onside, swivelled neatly and crashed the ball past Brad Friedel.

And the Hammers seemed intent on building on their perfect start.

Manager Avram Grant’s decision to play Carlton Cole, Victor Obinna and Keane in a three-pronged attack caused problems from the start.

Cole was the main goalscoring threat and saw a shot blocked after being slipped in by Keane and then from Gary O’Neil’s searching long ball he forced Friedel into a superb sprawling stop.

Cole also had a shout for a penalty waved away and the hosts barely had time to lament the absence of their midfield mainstay Scott Parker, who was missing with his Achilles injury.

But Manuel da Costa was forced off through injury and Villa began to settle after after their poor start.

The pace of Ashley Young and power and knowhow of Emile Heskey were now proving every bit as threatening as Keane’s guile and Cole’s direct running.

Ashley Young wriggled inside from the left flank but his shot deflected wide and the winger also tested Robert Green from 20 yards.

Bent then headed home from Stewart Downing’s fine right-wing cross but the goal was harshly disallowed for a push on Lars Jacobsen.

However, Bent did not have to wait long and, as good as the finish was by the England striker, Hammers manager Grant will have been furious with the defensive disaster that allowed him the chance.

Mark Noble dallied on the ball in his penalty box allowing Heskey to win possession and when the ball was cleverly worked into the box via Luke Young, Bent glanced his header past Green.

The visitors grew in confidence and began the second half in blistering fashion with Bent and Ashley Young once again the main threats.

Bent’s persistence created a chance but Green made a decent block at his near post and then Cole hacked away from his own line when James Collins headed towards goal.

The pressure was relentless. Ashley Young curling’s free-kick was superbly tipped away by Green and Villa’s top scorer Bent also curled an 18-yard strike just wide via a deflection.

West Ham were becoming increasingly disjointed and with their confidence looking brittle after two heavy defeats in their last two outings, Villa sensed the victory was theirs for the taking.

Kyle Walker’s fine run teed up another chance for Bent but the striker somehow fluffed his kick from close range and Ashley Young then drifted a shot agonisingly wide.

West Ham’s only noteworthy chance of the second half came in the final four minutes when Cole was unable to loop a tricky bouncing ball over Friedel.

And moments later the visitors were celebrating maximum points when Ashley Young retrieved the ball on the right wing and his delightful cross was gleefully headed home from point-blank range by Agbonlahor.

For Villa, it was only the second time they have won back-to-back matches this season, while the Hammers have slipped to a third consecutive defeat.

BBC Sport

Thursday, 21 April 2011


Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier in hospital


Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier has been admitted to hospital, the club has confirmed.


The 63-year-old was taken to hospital in Birmingham overnight.


He has spoken to the club's chief executive Paul Faulkner and his condition is said to be comfortable.


Assistant manager Gary McAllister will take Thursday's training session. Houllier has thanked supporters for their concern.


He is expected to remain in hospital for several days and is undergoing tests.


'Big shock'


McAllister will take charge of the team on Saturday for their game against Stoke at Villa Park.


Villa striker Darren Bent said: "Obviously everyone in the squad wishes that Gerard has a speedy recovery and that he is back soon, but yeah it was a big shock to all the players.


"But the main thing is his health and that he gets that right and hopefully he will be back soon."


Mr Faulkner said Houllier had sounded "positive" when he spoke to him.


He said: "I've also received a lot of good wishes from fans and I would like to thank them for their kind thoughts in wishing Gerard a speedy recovery.


"I will see him this afternoon, along with Gary, and we will pass on the fans' messages.


"I know they will mean a lot to him. We would ask everybody to respect his privacy and that of his family at this time."


Houllier had major surgery after suffering heart-related problems in 2001 when he was manager of Liverpool FC.


Houllier arrived at Villa Park in September to succeed Martin O'Neill.


When he took the position Houllier revealed he had consulted his heart surgeon before accepting the job.


He said he had returned to speak to Dr Abbas Rashid, the man who led the team who performed his 11-hour operation, and was given a clean bill of health.


"When you go into a job you know there will be pressure, that it will be hard work and you won't sleep every night," he said at the time.


"You need to make sure your body is ready. I have checked that. I am much healthier and fitter now than I was before."


Villa have been hovering around the relegation zone in recent weeks, although they have won their past two matches and the club previously said Houllier had their "total support" as he attempts to guide them to Premier League safety.