Season | 2020-21 |
Matchday | #8 |
League Match | #5 |
Manager Game | #92 |
Friday, 23 October 2020
Premier League | Home | Leeds United | Villa Park | Behind closed doors |
Game Summary |
Manager | Dean Smith |
KO | 20.00 |
Referee | Paul Tierney |
HT Score | 0-0 |
FT Result | 0-3 |
FT Score | Lost |
Last 5 Games | WLWWL |
League Position | 2nd | - |
Team News |
Dean Smith names the same team that beat Leicester to keep up their 100% league win record. Keinan Davis replaces Anwar El Ghazi on the subs bench.
Line Up |
GK Emiliano Martínez |
RB Matty Cash |
CB Tyrone Mings | BOOKED | 53' |
CB Ezri Konsa |
LB Matt Targett |
M Jack Grealish | BOOKED | 69' |
M John McGinn |
M Ross Barkley |
M Douglas Luiz |
W Trézéguet | SUB OFF | 66' |
CF Ollie Watkins |
W Bertrand Traoré for W Trézéguet | 66' |
Unused Substitutes |
GK Jed Steer
CB Björn Engels
RB Ahmed Elmohamady
M Conor Hourihane
M Marvelous Nakamba
CF Keinan Davis
Yellow | Tyrone Mings | 53' |
Yellow | Jack Grealish | 69' |
Match Stats |
Possession F | 41%
Possession A | 59%
Shots F | 12
Shots A | 27
Shots on Target F | 4
Shots on Target A | 9
Corners F | 6
Corners A | 5
Fouls F | 14
Fouls A | 17
Team Stats |
Starting XI Average Age | 25.33 |
Oldest Player | GK Emiliano Martínez | 28.16 |
Youngest Player | M Douglas Luiz | 22.47 |
Not Selected |
GK Lovre Kalinić |
LB Neil Taylor |
RB Frédéric Guilbert |
M Henri Lansbury |
M Jacob Ramsey |
W Anwar El Ghazi |
Injury | 3 |
GK Tom Heaton | Knee, ACL 1 Jan 20 - 28 Nov 20 |
CF Wesley | Knee, ACL 1 Jan 20 - 1 Jan 21 |
CB Kortney Hause | Groin, 1 Oct 20 - 1 Nov 20 |
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 |
On this day 23 October 2020
Villa lose their 100% record after this chastening defeat against recently promoted Leeds United
*Friday 23 October 2020*
Leeds United ended Aston Villa's winning start and ruined their chance of going top of the Premier League thanks to a brilliant Patrick Bamford hat-trick.
Villa came into Friday's game having won their first four games of a league campaign for the first time since 1930-31, but three expert finishes from the Leeds striker prevented the hosts making it a club record five victories on the spin to open their season.
The result lifts Leeds to third - their highest position at the end of a day in the division since September 2002.
It was reward for a relentlessly positive performance from an injury-hit visiting side that should probably have yielded more goals.
In the first-half, Bamford missed with a header and then side-footed wide after being found by Jack Harrison's low cross at the end of swift counter-attacking move.
Leeds' record signing Rodrigo was also guilty of spurning good opportunities, slicing one shot wide before seeing an effort blocked by Ezri Konsa.
Dean Smith's Villa team, who had put seven goals past champions Liverpool in their previous home game, saw a Jack Grealish shot cleared off the line by Luke Ayling after the ball had fallen to the midfielder from Trezeguet's miscued shot.
Villa's captain also went close with a saved effort from close range after he had shown great tenacity and skill to carry the ball from within his own half.
But Bamford had the decisive say, finding the corner of the net from just a few yards out after Emiliano Martinez had palmed out Rodrigo's low shot.
If his first was simple, his second and third were stunning - a rising effort into the top corner from 20 yards after he was found by Mateusz Klich on 67 minutes and a dug out, curling finish following Helder Costa's low ball seven minutes later.
Leeds are now two points and a place behind Villa, who remain second, a point behind leaders Everton.
Leeds maybe have not been as spectacular as Villa in the early stages of 2020-21, but they are certainly making their mark on a top flight that had been without them for 16 years.
There were plenty of times during that period when little was missing in their absence, but now - with Marcelo Bielsa in charge - the pleasure is all the Premier League's.
Leeds have already shown they are unwilling to be daunted and compromise their attacking principles, even when facing the elite sides.
And at Villa Park, with influential midfielder Kalvin Phillips and captain Liam Cooper missing through injury and a makeshift defence in place, they took apart the division's form team on their own patch.
Under Bielsa, Leeds create chances but they have not always had the cutting edge to make them count, with Bamford too often frustratingly profligate.
Premier League life with Leeds clearly suits the English striker, though, and Friday's hat-trick took him to six goals in six matches this term. His treble is also the sixth in the top flight already in 2020-21 - after 49 games, it is the earliest that has happened.
Leeds themselves have now scored 12 league goals, the most by a newly promoted club after six games of a season in the competition since Middlesbrough also netted 12 in 1992-93.
Villa suffer first setback
It is perhaps in-keeping with what has been a chaotic Premier League season so far that Villa, yet to drop points and whose last appearance on their own ground saw them put seven past Liverpool, would be put to the sword by newly promoted Leeds.
But still it defied all expectation. Villa were second best throughout, unable to compete with the visitors' intensity and energy.
Even Grealish, who has impressed so much, was unable to inspire his side, although he did have moments - not least of all with the solo run that almost brought an opener for the hosts early in the second half.
Bamford's first goal was a big blow, his second sent Villa to canvas and the third knocked them out.
It was a bad night at the office, but Smith's side remain a work in progress - and while he is unlikely to be pleased after defeat, one poor showing in five is a percentage he will surely take.
The key now will be whether Villa can respond to such a ruthless ending to one eight-game unbeaten streak by building another.
Aston Villa boss Dean Smith, speaking to Match of the Day: "Very frustrated, especially with the last 40 minutes. I thought the first half was very even. They scored the first goal and we got worse and they were very good. We probably got away with a 3-0 in the end with the chances they had.
"Who knows what would have happened if we had scored? That is the first time we have been behind in a game and we didn't handle it very well."
*Friday 23 October 2020*
Paul Doyle at Villa Park
Leeds unstoppable as Patrick Bamford hat-trick bursts Aston Villa bubble
Many people said Patrick Bamford was not cut out for the Premier League. Many people reckoned Aston Villa were about to climb to the top of the table for the first time in nine years. All those people were made to look idiotic as Leeds ran Villa ragged here and clinched victory thanks to a wonderful hat-trick by their centre-forward.
That sent Marcelo Bielsa’s team to third place in the table and took Bamford’s tally for the season to six goals from six league games. His previous 27 matches at this level had yielded just one, and his strike rate in the Championship was patchy. “I am very happy for him,” said Bielsa of Bamford. “There have been no significant changes [to how he plays], it’s just that now he is being more efficient.”
Villa had won all four of their previous matches this season and had not even been behind in a game. But Leeds continually made them scramble in this match and Bamford should have shot the visitors in front even before his second-half salvo. Once they took the lead, they seldom looked like relinquishing it and could have left their hosts even more disturbed. For Villa this was a reality check inflicted by a team whose play bordered at times on the otherworldly.
The only pity was that almost no one was here to bear witness. This was one of those matches where the absence of fans felt especially poignant. The first top-flight meeting between these two noble clubs since 2004 should have been enlivened by hollering throngs but instead Villa Park was all lit up but barren, a theatre without music. But the show must go on and Leeds, in particular, produced a spectacle of beautiful style and substance. Bamford got the goals but this was a collective triumph orchestrated by Bielsa.
Yet the portents were not good for the visitors. Whereas Dean Smith could send out an unchanged cast for the third match in a row, Bielsa had to rejig his side owing to injury to his midfield maestro, Kalvin Phillips, and the continued absence of his captain, Liam Cooper. That required several adjustments in defence and Pascal Struijk was set the formidable task of filling in for Phillips in midfield. That plan soon had to be revised, as Struijk got an early booking for a foul on Jack Grealish and then risked a red card. Bielsa substituted him after just 21 minutes, introducing Jamie Shackleton instead.
Leeds would have been in front by the stage if Bamford had not sent a diving header wide in the fourth minute after a cross from by Ezgjan Alioski. Leeds continued to attack as a clever swarm, forcing several emergency interventions by home players before Villa hinted at their own creative quality. Naturally Grealish was instrumental in that, but Ross Barkley and Trezeguet exerted little influence.
Luke Ayling rescued Leeds midway through the first half by dispossessing Ollie Watkins after the striker had pounced on a loose pass across the box by Stuart Dallas. Ayling soon had to save his team again, whacking a shot by Grealish off the line after a miscued effort by Trezeguet ran kindly for the Villa captain. The threat from Villa grew but Leeds nearly plundered a goal before half-time thanks to a rapid counterattack. Harrison hurtled down the left and pinged a low cross into Bamford. Under pressure from Ezri Konsa, Bamford shot wide from 10 yards.
And so a quietly riveting first half ended scoreless. Within two minutes of the restart Harrison forced Emiliano Martínez into a save after cutting in from the left and unloading a shot from 16 yards. Then Grealish tried to break through all by himself and nearly succeeded, scampering past three opponents from halfway and dancing into the area. Illan Meslier made a vital save in the home goal and then, from the ensuing corner, tipped a volley by Konsa over the bar. The importance of those saves was soon reinforced at the other end, as Bamford fired the visitors in front. He had started the move, too, before Leeds worked the ball wide to Rodrigo, whose low shot was turned away with one hand by Martínez. Bamford reacted fastest to guide the ball into the net from close range.
After that, the visitors took control. There was nothing Villa could do in the 67th minute other than marvel as Bamford collected a pass in the D and swept in a wonderful left-footed shot.
Bamford completed his hat-trick by crowning a brilliant move involving Rodrigo, Hélder Costa and Shackleton, the striker lashing a shot into the top-left corner of the net from 16 yards. Watkins flashed a late shot wide for Villa, and John McGinn thrashed one over the bar from long-range. But Leeds lost neither their lead nor their pizzazz.
“I was disappointed at how we reacted after the first goal,” said Dean Smith. “They looked a very good team after that and we looked like a poor team. But you have to give credit to Leeds, they were excellent with their one-touch passing in the second half and they comfortably beat us. And that’s the first time this season I’ve been disappointed with us.”