Season | 2020-21 |
Matchday | #11 |
League Match | #8 |
Manager Game | #95 |
Saturday, 21 November 2020
Premier League | Home | Brighton & Hove Albion | Villa Park | Behind closed doors |
Game Summary |
Manager | Dean Smith |
KO | 15.00 |
Referee | Michael Oliver |
HT Score | 0-1 |
FT Result | Lost |
FT Score | 1-2 |
Last 5 Games | WLLWL |
Scorer(s) | Ezri Konsa | 47' |
Assists | Bertrand Traoré | 47' |
League Position | 6th | - |
Team News |
Dean Smith names an unchanged line up from the team that thrashed Arsenal at the Emirates a fortnight previously. Smith had now made just 3 changes to his starting XI in the Premier League this season using 18 players. Both tallies were a low for the division.
Winger Bertrand Traoré returns to the subs bench after recovering from injury to replace centre forward Keinan Davis.
Line Up |
GK Emiliano Martínez |
RB Matty Cash |
CB Tyrone Mings |
CB Ezri Konsa | GOAL | 47' |
LB Matt Targett | BOOKED | 45' |
M Jack Grealish |
M John McGinn |
M Ross Barkley | SUB OFF | 5' |
M Douglas Luiz | SUB OFF | 75' |
W Trézéguet |
CF Ollie Watkins |
W Bertrand Traoré ASSIST | 47' | SUB OFF | 74' | for M Ross Barkley | 5' |
W Anwar El Ghazi for W Bertrand Traoré | 74' |
M Conor Hourihane for M Douglas Luiz | 75' |
Unused Substitutes |
GK Jed Steer
LB Neil Taylor
RB Ahmed Elmohamady
M Marvelous Nakamba
Yellow | Matt Targett for a bad foul | 45' |
Yellow | Jack Grealish | 90'+1 |
Match Stats |
Possession F | 55%
Possession A | 45%
Shots F | 15
Shots A | 7
Shots on Target F | 4
Shots on Target A | 3
Corners F | 12
Corners A | 3
Fouls F | 5
Fouls A | 18
Team Stats |
Starting XI Average Age | 25.41 |
Oldest Player | GK Emiliano Martínez | 28.24 |
Youngest Player | M Douglas Luiz | 22.55 |
Not Selected |
GK Lovre Kalinić |
RB Frédéric Guilbert |
CB Björn Engels |
CB Kortney Hause |
M Jacob Ramsey |
CF Keinan Davis |
Injury | 2 |
GK Tom Heaton | Knee, ACL 1 Jan 20 - 28 Nov 20 |
CF Wesley | Knee, ACL 1 Jan 20 - 1 Jan 21 |
Loaned Out | 2 |
W Indiana Vassilev | Burton Albion | 17 Sep 20 - 31 May 21 |
CF Cameron Archer | Solihull Moors | 2 Oct 20 - 3 Jan 21 |
Unregistered | 1 |
M Henri Lansbury |
On this day 21 November 2020
Winger Trézéguet made his 50th appearance for Villa since joining the club in 2019.
*Saturday 21 November 2020*
Brighton won at Villa Park for the first time in their history, deservedly edging out Aston Villa in a dramatic and entertaining encounter.
Solly March's delightful curling finish settled it after Ezri Konsa's sliding equaliser cancelled out Danny Welbeck's solo run and chip.
All of that preceded a frantic period of stoppage time that saw Tariq Lamptey sent off for a second yellow card and a decision to award Villa a penalty for a foul by March overturned after referee Michael Oliver consulted the pitchside monitor.
"I don't know what a penalty is now. We could all hear the contact inside the ground," said Villa boss Dean Smith.
The defeat is Villa's third in succession at home in the league and also comes at the cost of a hamstring injury to Ross Barkley, who pulled up inside the first two minutes.
They stay sixth, but at risk of slipping down the table with the majority of the weekend's fixtures still to be played.
Brighton's first victory in two months does not improve their position of 16th, but they at least move six points clear of the relegation zone.
Styles make matches
This was made so enjoyable by a relentless back and forth, a consequence of contrasting styles. Whereas Villa pressed high, Brighton sat back, looking to break with pace and exploit an occasionally shaky home defence.
Bertrand Traore, Barkley's replacement, and Jack Grealish pulled the strings for Villa, the latter routinely surrounded by a swarm of blue shirts.
Welbeck's pace made Brighton's first goal, yet he was outshone by the electric Lamptey, who was a constant nuisance down the the Seagulls' right.
In the end, Brighton were simply more clinical, with Villa's threat diminishing after they went behind for the second time.
Brighton find cutting edge
Brighton had managed only three goals in their previous four league matches, but despite often having to gather men behind the ball, they kept their attacking threat through Welbeck and his strike partner Neal Maupay.
Welbeck's first goal for the club and fifth in as many games against Villa came against the run of play. With the Villa defence caught too high up the field, Welbeck latched on to Adam Lallana's poke and ran unchallenged from inside his own half before cleverly lifting the ball over Emiliano Martinez.
Although Brighton lost the creativity of Lallana to a groin injury at half-time and found themselves pegged back soon after, they did not shrink.
And, nine minutes after the Villa equaliser, Pascal Gross rolled the ball across the face of the 18-yard box for March to add the delicious finish.
"Our second was a really good team goal and a great finish by Solly March," said Brighton manager Graham Potter. "I'm pleased for him because he influences games.
"We've had a few penalties against us this season so I'm not sure what is and what isn't a penalty these days. I know Solly touched the ball so we're just happy it went our way this time."
Villa rue wasted chances - and VAR
Villa can point to the misfortune of the Barkley injury and the overturning of the penalty decision, but they also engineered their own downfall through a number of missed chances and defensive errors.
Trezeguet and Ollie Watkins were the biggest culprits, with both guilty of wastefulness in the first half. The Brighton defence also proved resolute, with Ben White's timely interception denying Watkins inside the six-yard box and Mat Ryan making a number of saves, including an unorthodox volley from a Tyrone Mings header.
Villa's incision deserted them after Brighton's second goal, yet they still seemed to have won a golden opportunity to snatch a point.
Oliver pointed to the spot when March caught Trezeguet but, despite the contact on the man being clear, March also got some of the ball, and that was enough to convince Oliver to change his mind, leaving Villa bewildered.
"If VAR thinks it's not a penalty then just tell the referee it's not a penalty," said Smith. "It wasn't given so we have to take it on the chin.
"I don't think we were bad. We missed chances and we've made big mistakes for their goals. We have to defend much better. Brighton were a threat on the counter but I wasn't overly concerned.
"I thought we had control of the game and if we had taken our chances we would have won."
*Saturday 21 November 2020*
By Paul Doyle
Danny Welbeck off the mark as Brighton are saved by VAR in win at Aston Villa
In this strangest of seasons Aston Villa are the Premier League’s most entertaining puzzle, while VAR remains the most contentious.
Since thrashing Liverpool 7-2 at Villa Park in October, Dean Smith’s men have won away to Leicester and Arsenal but lost all three of their home matches, including this rollicking duel with a smart, tenacious and slightly lucky Brighton side who – and this is rare – proved to be more efficient than their opponents.
“We’ve played well in previous games and done a lot of good things but not got the rewards so these three points are very good for us,” said Graham Potter.
After goals by Danny Welbeck and Solly March either side of one by Ezri Konsa, Brighton benefited in stoppage time from the surprising reversal of a penalty decision, with Michael Oliver overturning his own ruling after going to the pitchside screen to review a tackle by March on Trezeguet.
This was the sort of harum-scarum and feisty affair that would have had Villa Park heaving if fans had been present. Both sides could have struck at least three goals in the first half alone. As it transpired, the visitors led just 1-0 at the break thanks to a slick combination between two players who showed they still have plenty to offer.
In the 12th minute Adam Lallana, with a sweet pivot and pass in midfield, released Welbeck, who raced through from the halfway line before clipping the ball over Emi Martínez. It was alarming how easily Villa’s high defence had been caught out by a single pass and what followed revived memories of their last match here, when Southampton scored with practically every attack on the way to a 4-3 win. Although Villa spent much of the game on the front foot, Brighton looked capable of scoring whenever they advanced.
Lamptey wrought havoc from his right-back berth and offered Welbeck a chance to make it 2-0 in the 22nd minute after seizing on a loose pass by John McGinn. But a poor touch by the striker spared Villa.
Villa, whose problems began in the second minute when Ross Barkley pulled up with hamstring trouble that led to him being replaced, could have been on level terms by then, but Trezeguet had a shot from close range blocked by Adam Webster and then blasted the rebound wide. Barkley’s replacement, Bertrand Traoré, then forced Mat Ryan into a diving save from the edge of the area. Moments later, Martínez charged out of his box to thwart Maupay after a cute through ball by Welbeck.
Lallana glanced a shot wide from 12 yards after more high-class service from Lamptey. Villa are generally powerful from set pieces but did not threaten from any until Tyrone Mings went close from a corner, forcing Ryan to improvise a kick off the line.
Moments later Ben White came to the visitors’ rescue, charging back to tip the ball off the foot of Watkins just as the striker seemed certain to turn in a cross by Grealish, who had switched flanks by then, possibly to escape Lamptey.
Brighton finally buckled just after the interval, when Konsa slid in at the back post to volley a free-kick by Traoré into the net. But Villa remained ragged at the back, a flaw Brighton soon punished. When Pascal Gross collected the ball on the right of Villa’s box in the 55th minute, he had time to play it across the area to the unmarked March, who guided a curling shot into the top corner of the net.
Villa thought they had been given a chance to salvage a point in stoppage time when the referee pointed to the spot after March appeared to catch Trezeguet with a trailing leg. But, on the advice of the VAR official, Oliver took a closer look and seemingly judged that March connected with the ball before touching Trezeguet.
“I don’t know what a penalty is now and I’m at a loss to explain it,” said Smith. “If VAR thinks it’s not a penalty, then just tell the referee.”