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Game #5485

Saturday, 2 March 2019

Attendance: 37,273

Won

Championship

11th (+2)

Derby County

Last 5: ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฉ

Villa Park

And so it begins, four goals in 45 minutes, Villa win for the first time in six to light up Villa Park with a performance to match Dean Smith's best.

Aston Villa

4-0

Derby County

Assist(s) | Tammy Abraham | 9' | 44โ€™ | Ahmed Elmohamady | 37โ€™ | Glenn Whelan | 45โ€™+2 |

KEY MAN

New Captain Jack Grealish celebrates scoring on his return to the side, 2 March 2019

PREVIOUS MATCH

NEXT MATCH

MATCH TIMELINE

โšฝ | 9โ€™ Goal, 1-0, Conor Hourihane, Assist by Tammy Abraham
๐ŸŸจ | 24โ€™ Booking, Conor Hourihane
โšฝ | 37โ€™ Goal, 2-0, Tammy Abraham, Assist by Ahmed Elmohamady
โšฝ | 44โ€™ Goal, 3-0, Conor Hourihane, Assist by Tammy Abraham
โšฝ | 45โ€™+2 Goal, 4-0, Jack Grealish, Assist by Glenn Whelan
๐Ÿ•’ | HT Aston Villa 4-0 Derby County
๐ŸŸจ | 60โ€™ Booking, Kortney Hause for a bad foul
๐Ÿ” | 67โ€™ Sub off, Tommy Elphick ๐Ÿ”ด, Sub on, Neil Taylor
๐Ÿ” | 71โ€™ Sub off, Jack Grealish, Sub on, Tom Carroll ๐Ÿ”ด
๐Ÿ” | 80โ€™ Sub off, Anwar El Ghazi, Sub on, Andrรฉ Green
๐Ÿ•’ | FT Aston Villa 4-0 Derby County

ON THIS DAY

Following the rot stopping result and performance at Stoke in the previous game Villa were truly back on track and back to their best under Dean Smith with a four-goal first half demolition of Derby County. Dean Smithโ€™s Villa had now put 7 goals past the Rams this season.

Dean Smith handed the returning Jack Grealish the captaincy for the first time.

Centre back Tommy Elphick made his final appearance for Villa aged 31 before being released in May 2019. Elphick had made 46 appearances including 7 as substitute and scored once during his 3 season stay with Villa.

Midfielder Tom Carroll made his final appearance for Villa aged 26 before returning to Swansea City early from his loan spell due to injury. Carroll made 2 substitute appearances during his month with Villa.

Former Villa โ€˜keeper Scott Carson lined up for Derby.

Aston Villa

European Cup / Champions League: ๐Ÿ†
League Champions: ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ† ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†
FA Cup Winners: ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ† ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†
League Cup Winners: ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†
Last Trophy: 1995-96

Derby County

European Cup / Champions League: โŒ
League Champions: ๐Ÿ†๐Ÿ†
FA Cup Winners: ๐Ÿ†
League Cup Winners: โŒ
Last Trophy: 1974-75

FIXTURE HISTORY

Derby County

Previous 5 vs. Derby: ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฉ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฉ

FIXTURE DETAILS

Seasons | 2018-19 |
Matchday | #38 |
League Game | #35 |
Manager Game | #24 |
Saturday, 2 March 2019

MATCH SUMMARY

Manager: Dean Smith | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | West Bromwich, 2018-2021
Referee: Lee Mason | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Bolton, 2006-2021
Kick off: 3.00pm
HT Score: ๐ŸŸฉ 4-0
FT Score: ๐ŸŸฉ 4-0
FT Result: ๐ŸŸฉ Won
Last 5: ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฉ

MATCH OFFICIALS

Referee: Lee Mason | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Bolton, 2006-2021
Previous 5: ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸฅ ๐ŸŸฅ
Last Match: ๐ŸŸฅ 5 Mar 16, Villa 0-4 Abu Dhabi (a)
Cards: ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸจ
Assistants: Harry Lennard, Ian Hussin

CARDS

Villa

๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸจ

Derby County

๐ŸŸจ ๐ŸŸจ

Lee Mason

TEAM NEWS

Jack Grealish returns to the line up after missing 14 games along with Stoke goal hero Albert Adomah whilst Jonathan Kodjia and Alan Hutton (injury) miss out.

TEAM STATS

Starting XI Average Age: | 27.49 |
Oldest Player: M Glenn Whelan | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | 35.16 |
Youngest Player: CF Tammy Abraham | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | 21.43 |

MANAGER

MANAGER

Dean Smith | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |

Frank Lampard | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |

Aston Villa

GK Jed Steer | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
CB Kortney Hause | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐ŸŸจ |
CB Tyrone Mings | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
CB Tommy Elphick | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐Ÿ”ด |
RB Ahmed Elmohamady | ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฌ | ๐Ÿ”ฅ |
M Glenn Whelan | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | ๐Ÿ”ฅ |
M Conor Hourihane | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | โšฝ | ๐ŸŸจ | โšฝ |
M Jack Grealish | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | โšฝ |
W Anwar El Ghazi | ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ |
W Albert Adomah | ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ญ |
CF Tammy Abraham | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐Ÿ”ฅ | โšฝ | ๐Ÿ”ฅ |

Derby County

GK Scott Carson (ex) | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
LB Ashley Cole | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐Ÿ” |
CB Fikayo Tomori | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
CB Richard Keogh | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช |
RB Andre Wisdom | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
M George Evans | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐ŸŸจ | ๐Ÿ” |
M Duane Holmes | ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ | ๐ŸŸจ |
M Max Bird | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
W Florian Jozefzoon | ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ท |
W Mason Bennett | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐Ÿ” |
CF Jack Marriott | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |

SUBSTITUTES

๐Ÿ” LB Neil Taylor | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ | for CB Tommy Elphick | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | 67โ€™ |
๐Ÿ” M Tom Carroll | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ๐Ÿ”ด | for M Jack Grealish | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | 71โ€™ |
๐Ÿ” W Andrรฉ Green | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | for W Anwar El Ghazi | ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ | 80โ€™ |

SUBSTITUTES

๐Ÿ” | LB Scott Malone | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | for LB Ashley Cole | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | 46โ€™ |
๐Ÿ” | W Harry Wilson | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ | for M George Evans | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | 46โ€™ |
๐Ÿ” | RB Jayden Bogle | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | for W Mason Bennett | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | 55โ€™ |

UNUSED SUBSTITUTES

GK Lovre Kaliniฤ‡ | ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ท |
M Mile Jedinak | ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ |
M Birkir Bjarnason | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ |
CF Jonathan Kodija | ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฎ |

UNUSED SUBSTITUTES

GK Kelle Roos | ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ |
M Bradley Johnson | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
M Jayden Mitchell-Lawson | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
CF Martyn Waghorn | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |

SQUAD STATS

1st XI Cost: ยฃ20.92m
Home Nation ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง : 6/11
Homegrown: 1/11
Subs Cost: ยฃ0.00m
Team Cost: ยฃ20.92m
Squad Cost: ยฃ43.87m
Home Nation ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง : 9/18
Homegrown: 2/18

MATCHDAY SQUAD

GK Lovre Kaliniฤ‡ | ๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ท | ยฃ5.40m |
GK Jed Steer | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ยฃ0.49m |

RB Ahmed Elmohamady | ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฌ | ยฃ0.99m |
LB Neil Taylor | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ | Exchange |

CB Tommy Elphick | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ยฃ3.51m |
CB Kortney Hause | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Loan |
CB Tyrone Mings | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Loan |

M Mile Jedinak | ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ | ยฃ4.14m |
M Conor Hourihane | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | ยฃ3.15m |
M Birkir Bjarnason | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ | ยฃ1.80m |
M Glenn Whelan | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | ยฃ1.53m |
M Jack Grealish | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Youth |
M Tom Carroll | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Loan |

W Anwar El Ghazi | ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ | ยฃ8.10m |
W Albert Adomah | ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ญ | ยฃ3.15m |
W Andrรฉ Green | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Youth |

CF Jonathan Kodjia | ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฎ | ยฃ11.61m |
CF Tammy Abraham | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Loan |

SQUAD STATS

1st XI Cost: ยฃ9.32m
Home Nation ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง : 8/11
Homegrown: 1/11
Subs Cost: ยฃ0.00m
Team Cost: ยฃ9.32m
Squad Cost: ยฃ21.08m
Home Nation ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง : 14/18
Homegrown: 1/18

MATCHDAY SQUAD

GK Scott Carson (ex) | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Free |
GK Kelle Roos | ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ | ยฃ0.02m |

RB Andre Wisdom | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ยฃ1.97m |
LB Ashley Cole | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Free |
LB Scott Malone | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Free |
RB Jayden Bogle | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Free |

CB Richard Keogh | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | ยฃ1.10m |
CB Fikayo Tomori | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Loan |

M Bradley Johnson | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ยฃ6.94m |
M Duane Holmes | ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ | ยฃ0.67m |
M Max Bird | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Youth |
M George Evans | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Free |
M Jayden Mitchell-Lawson | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Free |

W Florian Jozefzoon | ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ท | ยฃ2.66m |
W Mason Bennett | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Youth |
W Harry Wilson | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ | Loan |

CF Martyn Waghorn | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ยฃ4.80m |
CF Jack Marriott | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | ยฃ2.92m |

UNAVAILABLE

Injury | 5 |
CB Axel Tuanzebe | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
GK ร˜rjan Nyland | ๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด |
CB James Chester | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ |
M Henri Lansbury | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
RB Alan Hutton | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ |

Suspension | 1 |
M John McGinn | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ |

Out on Loan | 13 |
M Gary Gardner | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Small Heath
RB Mitch Clark | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ท๓ ฌ๓ ณ๓ ฟ | Port Vale
M Aaron Tshibola | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Kilmarnock
RB Ritchie De Laet | ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ช | Melbourne
CF Ross McCormack | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ณ๓ ฃ๓ ด๓ ฟ | Motherwell
F Rushian Hepburn-Murphy | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Cambridge
F Callum Oโ€™Hare | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Carlisle
W Corey Blackett-Taylor | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Walsall
RB James Bree | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Ipswich
M Jake Doyle-Hayes | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | Cambridge
F Scott Hogan | ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช | Sheffield United
F Harry McKirdy | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ | Newport
RB Frรฉdรฉric Guilbert | ๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท | Caen

UNAVAILABLE

Not Recorded

Player Abbreviations:

GK : Goalkeeper

LB, RB, FB : Left Back, Right Back, Full Back

CB, D : Centre Back, Defender

M, W : Midfielder. Winger

F, CF : Forward, Centre Forward

๐ŸŸข : Debut ๐Ÿ”ด : Final Game

Symbols:

โšฝ | Goal
๐Ÿ”ฅ | Assist
๐Ÿ” | Substitution

๐ŸŸจ | Booking

๐ŸŸฅ | Sending off

๐Ÿ†˜ | Poor refereeing performance

DEBUT APPEARANCES

FINAL APPEARANCES

CB Tommy Elphick | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |
M Tom Carroll | ๐Ÿด๓ ง๓ ข๓ ฅ๓ ฎ๓ ง๓ ฟ |

MATCH STATS

Possession F | 54%
Possession A | 46%
Shots F | 13
Shots A | 3
Shots on Target F | 6
Shots on Target A | 0
Corners F | 8
Corners A | 1
Fouls F | 5
Fouls A | 14

TABLE

2021-22 Matchweek 38.jpg

PROGRAMME

Quotation Marks.png

MATCHDAY QUOTES

*Villa boss Dean Smith*

โ€œIt was a really good performance. We started very well and had a big chance cleared off the line.

โ€œWeโ€™ve had a few of those over recent weeks when it hasnโ€™t quite gone for us, but we scored shortly afterwards which has given everyone a lift.

โ€œWe scored some great goals and saw the game out very well. I told them I wanted a clean sheet and I thought if anyone was going to score in the second half, it would have been us.

โ€œWe finished comfortable winners and Jack Grealishโ€™s goal topped the display. He is a top footballer and a level-headed lad which is very important.

โ€œHe has a long-term contract at the club and giving him the captaincy he can certainly grow.

โ€œHe leads by example and, knowing his character, I knew it would not be a burden. It was quite an easy decision for me to make. It was a proud moment for him. Like myself he is a Villa fan and to captain the team and score the goal he obtained topped his performance.โ€

โ€œJackโ€™s got great leadership qualities and heโ€™s a Villa boy so I had no qualms about making him captain today. The armband isnโ€™t a burden to him and I thought itโ€™s a good statement for the future and for him. In training he couldnโ€™t hit the target but it was a great goal he scored.โ€

*BBC Sport*
Saturday, 2 March 2019

*Conor Hourihane grabbed a double and Jack Grealish scored a breathtaking volley on his return from injury as Aston Villa thumped a dire Derby County side to get their Championship play-off challenge back on track in style.*

Hourihane started the first-half onslaught when he slotted home after Tammy Abrahamโ€™s shot had been saved and Abraham slid in the second soon after.

Derbyโ€™s third consecutive defeat in a four-game winless league run was as good as confirmed when Hourihane scored his second from close range.

But the away sideโ€™s desperate first half got even worse when Grealishโ€™s thunderous volley found the net from 25 yards to make it 4-0.

Villa, who had gone five games without a win and managed just two league victories in 14, continued to dominate as they coasted to an 11th win in 12 against Derby, with keeper Scott Carson making several fine saves.

Carson, one of six changes to Frank Lampardโ€™s side, continued to be busy behind a sloppy defence that never coped with the movement and pace of Abraham, Hourihane and the captain Grealish.

Abrahamโ€™s 21st goal of the season made it 2-0 after a fine cross by Ahmed Elmohamady.

And Abraham was also involved in the third when he outmuscled Richard Keogh, ran on and slipped the ball to Hourihane, who found the net with a composed finish.

Grealish, who left the field to a standing ovation after 70 minutes, then grabbed a sensational fourth when he volleyed in a Glenn Whelan corner for the goal of the day and one of the best seen at Villa Park all season.

Abraham, Grealish and Anwar El Ghazi could all have added to the margin of victory after the break, while Derbyโ€™s fans resorted to cheering when they won a second-half corner and saw their side end the match without mustering a shot on target.

*Aston Villa manager Dean Smith told BBC WM 95.6*: โ€œIt was a really good performance. We started very well and had a big chance cleared off the line.

โ€œWeโ€™ve had a few of those over recent weeks when it hasnโ€™t quite gone for us, but we scored shortly afterwards which has given everyone a lift.

โ€œWe scored some great goals and saw the game out very well. I told them I wanted a clean sheet and I thought if anyone was going to score in the second half, it would have been us.

โ€œJackโ€™s got great leadership qualities and heโ€™s a Villa boy so I had no qualms about making him captain today. The armband isnโ€™t a burden to him and I thought itโ€™s a good statement for the future and for him. In training he couldnโ€™t hit the target but it was a great goal he scored.โ€
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*The Guardian*
Saturday, 2 March 2019

Jack Grealish imperious on his return in Aston Villaโ€™s thrashing of Derby

A Jack Grealish-inspired Aston Villa romped to a one-sided victory over an injury-hit Derby, who slumped to their 11th defeat in 12 games at Villa Park. The talented midfielder was in outstanding form on his return to first-team duty and lit up Villaโ€™s easy win and his own display with a brilliant goal from 25 yards.

Villa completely dominated the game, sealing the victory with a blitz of goals in the first half, two of them coming from Conor Hourihane and one apiece from Tammy Abraham and Grealish. The belated return of Grealish, who was named as Villaโ€™s captain, produced an immediate improvement.

Villa had won just two of their 13 games without Grealish but completed a well-deserved double over Frank Lampardโ€™s side, who slipped to their third successive defeat. Derby, showing six changes from the side beaten in midweek by Nottingham Forest, came under pressure from the off and there was an ominous warning of what lay in store, with only poor finishing by Hourihane saved them from falling behind in the opening five minutes.

The Irishman made amends in the ninth minute, however. Derbyโ€™s goalkeeper Scott Carson was left stranded in the middle of the penalty area when Abraham nudged the ball back into the middle to the unmarked Hourihane, who had the simplest of tasks to turn the ball into the empty net. Carson continued to have an anxious time behind a Derby defence that opened up far too easily, and Villa should have increased their lead in the 18th minute when Albert Adomah casually lofted his shot over the bar with the opposition defence badly wrongfooted.

As it was, Derby struggled to find their promotion-chasing form. Eventually Duane Holmes began to make an impact, setting up several promising attacks to expose Villaโ€™s uncertain defence. But in the 37th minute Derbyโ€™s rearguard was again stretched and a long, low crossfield pass was turned into the net at the far post by the sliding Abraham.

With Derbyโ€™s defence being torn to shreds, a Grealish-led Villa attack notched their third goal in the 44th minute. Abraham again unselfishly set up Hourihane to score his second goal from close range.

The coup de grรขce for Derbyโ€™s hopes came in the second minute of added time in the first half. Glenn Whelanโ€™s corner from the left was delivered directly to the edge of the penalty area where Grealish met it with a ferocious rightโ€‘footed volley into the far top corner.

Villa calmly closed out the win in the second half, with the day marred only by the sight of the defender Tommy Elphick departing the pitch on a stretcher. Grealish was substituted with 20 minutes left to a standing ovation as Villaโ€™s fans revelled in an almost perfect afternoon.

The Villa manager Dean Smith said: โ€œWe finished comfortable winners and Jack Grealishโ€™s goal topped the display. He is a top footballer and a level-headed lad which is very important.

Explaining why he made Grealish captain after such a long time out, Smith said: โ€œHe has a long-term contract at the club and giving him the captaincy he can certainly grow.

โ€œHe leads by example and, knowing his character, I knew it would not be a burden. It was quite an easy decision for me to make. It was a proud moment for him. Like myself he is a Villa fan and to captain the team and score the goal he obtained topped his performance.โ€

Despite the win, Smith refused to discuss Villaโ€™s prospects of making the play-offs, with his side now six points off the top six.