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Game #5650

Aston Villa

Friday, 13 January 2023


11th (-)

Last 5: 🟥 🟩 🟨 🟥 🟩

Premier League

Attendance: 42,008

Leeds United

Villa Park

Villa make it four wins in six Premier League games under Unai Emery having only - more than the total in eleven under the former manager.

Aston Villa


Leeds United

Assist(s) | Boubacar Kamara | 3' |


Emiliano Buendía, put the game beyond doubt




Friday, 13 January 2023

⚽ | 3’ Goal, 1-0, Leon Bailey, Assist by Boubacar Kamara
🔁 | 10’ Sub off, Lucas Digne (injury), Sub on, Álex Moreno 🟢
🔁 | 32’ Sub off, Ollie Watkins (injury), Sub on, Danny Ings
🕒 | HT Aston Villa 1-0 Leeds United
🟨 | 63’ Booking, Boubacar Kamara for time wasting
⚽ | 64’ Goal, 2-0, Emiliano Buendía
💥 | 64’ Goal disallowed by referee
⚽ | 65’ VAR confirms goal
🔁 | 81’ Sub off, Jacob Ramsey, Sub on, Morgan Sanson
🔁 | 81’ Sub off, Emiliano Buendía, Sub on, Philippe Coutinho
🥅 | 83’ Goal, 2-1, (Leeds United), Patrick Bamford
💥 | 89’ Illan Meslier (Leeds United) handles outside the area
🟨 | 90’+2 Booking, Emiliano Martínez for time wasting
🕒 | FT Aston Villa 2-1 Leeds United


Villa make it four wins in six Premier League games under Unai Emery having only - more than the total in eleven under the former manager.

Aston Villa

European Cup / Champions League: 🏆
League Champions: 🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆 🏆🏆
FA Cup Winners: 🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆 🏆🏆
League Cup Winners: 🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆
Last Trophy: 1995-96

Leeds United

European Cup / Champions League: ❌
League Champions: 🏆🏆🏆
FA Cup Winners: 🏆
League Cup Winners: 🏆
Last Trophy: 1991–92


Leeds United

Previous 5 vs. Leeds: 🟥 🟩 🟨 🟩 🟨


Season | 2022-23 |
Matchday | #22 |
League Game | #19 |
Manager Game | #8 |
Friday, 13 January 2023
Attendance | 42,008 |


Manager: Unai Emery | 🇪🇸 | Hondarribia, 2022-
Referee: Michael Oliver | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Northumberland, 2007-
Kick off: 8.00pm
Half Time Score: 🟩 1-0
Full Time Result: 🟩 Won
Full Time Score: 🟩 2-1
Last 5: 🟥 🟩 🟨 🟥 🟩


Unai Emery | 🇪🇸 |


🕒 8 | 🟩 | 4 🟨 | 1 🟥 3 | 1.63

Career Form:

Top 6

Unai Emery | 🇪🇸 |


Referee: Michael Oliver | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Northumberland, 2007-
Previous 5: 🟩 🟥 🟥 🟩 🟥
Last Match: 🟥 20 Oct 22, Villa 0-3 Fulham (a)
Incidents: 🟨 🟨 🟨 🟨
Assistants: Stuart Burt, Simon Bennett.
Fourth official: Jarred Gillett.
VAR: Andy Madley.
Assistant VAR: Lee Betts.

Michael Oliver



🟨 🟨

Leeds United

🟨 🟨


Unai Emery, following possibly the worst cup embarrassment in Villa’s history, reverts to a first XI fit to wear the shirt.

With Ludwig Augustinsson’s loan quickly terminated after his latest, disastrous performance, it is chastening to still see Robin Olsen and Jan Bednarek in the squad.

Such is the paucity of the squad inherited from the former manager.

More happily the recalled first team are bolstered by the arrival of Álex Moreno who makes his first squad appearance.

Also making a welcome return to the squad, though probably short-lived, is Marvelous Nakamba, whilst the one shining light of the cup debacle in the last match - Morgan Sanson - remains on the bench.


Starting XI Average Age: | 27.36 |
Bench Average Age: | 26.94 |
Squad Average Age: | 27.71 |
Subs Average Age: | 29.83 |
Oldest Starter: RB Ashley Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 37.54 |
Youngest Starter: M Jacob Ramsey | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 21.64 |
Oldest Squad Player: RB Ashley Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 37.54 |
Youngest Squad Player: F Kadan Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 16.98 |
Oldest Substitute: CF Danny Ings | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 30.85 |
Youngest Substitute: M Morgan Sanson | 🇫🇷 | 28.42 |



Unai Emery | 🇪🇸 |

Jesse Marsch | 🇺🇸 |

Aston Villa

GK Emiliano Martínez | 🇦🇷 | 🟨 |
RB Ashley Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
CB Ezri Konsa | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
CB Tyrone Mings | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
LB Lucas Digne | 🇫🇷 | 🔁 |
M Douglas Luiz | 🇧🇷 |
M Boubacar Kamara | 🇫🇷 | 🔥 | 🟨 |
M Jacob Ramsey | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 🔁 |
W Leon Bailey | 🇯🇲 | ⚽ |
W Emiliano Buendía | 🇦🇷 | 🔁 |
CF Ollie Watkins | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 🔁 |

Leeds United

GK Illan Meslier | 🇫🇷 | 🟨 |
RB Luke Ayling | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
CB Robin Koch | 🇩🇪 | 🟨 | 🔁 |
CB Liam Cooper | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
CB Pascal Struijk | 🇳🇱 | 🔁 |
M Tyler Adams | 🇺🇸 |
M Marc Roca | 🇪🇸 | 🔁 |
W Jack Harrison | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 🔁 |
M Brenden Aaronson | 🇺🇸 | 🔁 |
F Wilfried Gnoto | 🇮🇹 |
F Rodrigo | 🇪🇸 |


🔁 | LB Álex Moreno | 🇪🇸 | 🟢 | for LB Lucas Digne | 🇫🇷 | 10’ |
🔁 | CF Danny Ings | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 🔴 | for CF Ollie Watkins | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 32’ |
🔁 | M Morgan Sanson | 🇫🇷 | for M Jacob Ramsey | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 81’ |
🔁 | M Philippe Coutinho | 🇧🇷 | for W Emiliano Buendía | 🇦🇷 | 81’ |


🔁 | CB Maximilian Wöber | 🇦🇹 | for W Jack Harrison | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | 67’ |
🔁 | CF Patrick Bamford 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | ⚽ | for CB Pascal Struijk | 🇳🇱 | 67’ |
🔁 | CF Joe Gelhardt | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | for M Marc Roca | 🇪🇸 | 77’ |
🔁 | CF Sam Greenwood | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | for M Brenden Aaronson | 🇺🇸 | 77’ |
🔁 | LB Junior Firpo | 🇩🇴 | for CB Robin Koch | 🇩🇪 | 88’ |


GK Robin Olsen | 🇸🇪 |
CB Calum Chambers | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
CB Jan Bednarek | 🇵🇱 |
M Marvelous Nakamba | 🇿🇼 |
F Kadan Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |


GK Joel Robles | 🇪🇸 |
CB Diego Llorente | 🇪🇸 |
RB Rasmus Kristensen | 🇩🇰 |
CF Sonny Perkins | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |


1st XI Cost: £178.02m
Home Nation 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 🇬🇧 : 5/11
Homegrown: 1/11
Subs Cost: £70.70m
Team Cost: £248.72m
Squad Cost: £262.67m
Home Nation 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 🇬🇧 : 8/20
Homegrown: 2/20


GK Emiliano Martínez | 🇦🇷 | £19.58m |
GK Robin Olsen | 🇸🇪 | £3.15m |

LB Lucas Digne | 🇫🇷 | £27.00m |
LB Álex Moreno | 🇪🇸 | £12.00m |
RB Ashley Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Free |

CB Tyrone Mings | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £20.60m |
CB Ezri Konsa | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £11.97m |
CB Calum Chambers | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Free |
CB Jan Bednarek | 🇵🇱 | Loan |

M Philippe Coutinho | 🇧🇷 | £18.00m |
M Douglas Luiz | 🇧🇷 | £15.12m |
M Morgan Sanson | 🇫🇷 | £14.22m |
M Marvelous Nakamba | 🇿🇼 | £10.80m |
M Jacob Ramsey | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Youth |
M Boubacar Kamara | 🇫🇷 | Free |

W Emiliano Buendía | 🇦🇷 | £34.56m |
W Leon Bailey | 🇯🇲 | £28.80m |

CF Danny Ings | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £31.59m |
CF Ollie Watkins | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £27.72m |
F Kadan Young | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Youth |


1st XI Cost: £183.01m
Home Nation 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 🇬🇧 : 3/11
Homegrown: ⭕/11
Subs Cost: £33.54m
Team Cost: £216.55m
Squad Cost: £245.96m
Home Nation 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 🇬🇧 : 7/11
Homegrown: ⭕/20


GK Illan Meslier | 🇫🇷 | £5.85m |
GK Joel Robles | 🇪🇸 | Free |

LB Junior Firpo | 🇩🇴 | £13.50m |
RB Rasmus Kristensen | 🇩🇰 | £11.41m |
RB Luke Ayling | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £0.78m |

CB Diego Llorente | 🇪🇸 | £18.00m |
CB Robin Koch | 🇩🇪 | £11.70m |
CB Maximilian Wöber | 🇦🇹 | £10.50m |
CB Liam Cooper | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £0.66m |
CB Pascal Struijk | 🇳🇱 | Free |

M Brenden Aaronson | 🇺🇸 | £29.00m |
M Tyler Adams | 🇺🇸 | £15.00m |
M Marc Roca | 🇪🇸 | £10.50m |

W Jack Harrison | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £11.52m |

F Rodrigo | 🇪🇸 | £27.00m |
CF Patrick Bamford 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £7.11m |
F Wilfried Gnoto | 🇮🇹 | £4.00m |
CF Sam Greenwood | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £1.53m |
CF Joe Gelhardt | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | £0.90m |
CF Sonny Perkins | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Free |


Suspended | 1 |
M Leander Dendoncker | 🇧🇪 |

Injury | 4 |
GK Jed Steer | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Achilles
CB Diego Carlos | 🇧🇷 | Achilles
M John McGinn | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 | Hamstring
RB Matty Cash | 🇵🇱 | Groin, Hip, Pelvic

Out On Loan | 11 |
M Finn Azaz | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Plymouth
CF Louie Barry | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | MK Dons
CF Wesley | 🇧🇷 | Levante
W Jaden Philogene-Bidace | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Cardiff
RB Kaine Kesler Hayden | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Huddersfield
CF Keinan Davis | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Watford
W Bertrand Traoré | 🇧🇫 | Basaksehir
CB Kortney Hause | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Watford
FB Ben Chrisene | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Kilmarnock
M Tim Iroegbunam | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | QPR
CF Cameron Archer | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 | Middlesbrough

Not Selected | 1 |
RB Frédéric Guilbert | 🇫🇷 |


Not Recorded

Player Positions:

GK : Goalkeeper
CB, D, B : Centre Back, Defender, Back
FB, LB, RB, WH : Full Back, Left Back, Right Back, Wing Back, Wing Half

M, CH, LH, RH : Midfielder, Centre Half, Left Half, Right Half
W, OL, OR : Winger, Outside Left, Outside Right
F, IF, IL, IR : Forward, Inside Forward, Inside Left, Inside Right, Second Striker, False 9
CF : Centre Forward

Match Symbols:

⚽ | Goal
🔥 | Assist
🔁 | Substitution

🟨 | Booking

🟥 | Sending off

🆘 | Poor refereeing performance
🟢 : Debut 🔴 : Final Game


🟢 LB Álex Moreno | 🇪🇸 |


🔴 CF Danny Ings | 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 |
🔴 CB Jan Bednarek | 🇵🇱 | Final Squad Appearance


Possession F | 54%
Possession A | 46%
Shots F | 11
Shots A | 16
Shots on Target F | 5
Shots on Target A | 4
Corners F | 0
Corners A | 11
Fouls F | 12
Fouls A | 18


2021-22 Matchweek 38.jpg


Quotation Marks.png


“It was two different halves. The first we conceded more than we wanted but they had a lot of energy and were pushing.

“There were a lot of duels and we needed to stay calm and break the first press to attack the spaces and we did a very good goal, an amazing goal with very good transitions, but then we needed our goalkeeper to save some good moments from them.

“The second half was different. We spoke about fighting face to face in the duels, but we needed to keep the ball and tried to do longer possession with the ball and try to impose and progress with the passes and keep control of the goal.

“We did amazing in the second half and scored the second goal and had chances to score a third goal. They had one or two chances as well and they scored but the second half was very different and our performance was better.

“I was concerned by the number of chances they created. We are trying to control matches with good possession and to not concede a lot of chances but they have good players and they tried to put the ball in our box and do it so fast. I am so happy for the victory and our performance. Bailey didn’t score two very good chances against Wolves and today he scored and he has done the action for the second goal. It will be amazing for his confidence. The spirit of the team today with the support was very good.

“The first half we were a little bit happy but confused. We weren’t playing very well. We had less chances than we wanted. We were expecting them to attack as well. They’re a team who want to attack quickly and to get balls into the box. They are so direct with long balls and second actions. We didn’t control the first half and we were a little upset and confused. We changed something to keep the ball possession longer and that, for us, was the key. Because after it we break the pressing and had spaces to attack. They backtracked and we had chances to score the second and chances to score the third.”

Unai Emery.


“Emi Martinez made some good saves and Leon Bailey played a part in both goals so probably just edges Ashley Young for man of the match.

“I will go away tonight thinking it is the best atmosphere I’ve seen at Villa Park for a long time.”

Gary Neville.


“We knew it was going to be tough. We know what comes in games against Leeds, they are always a bit feisty. We were up for that tonight. Every man from the keeper to the forwards were fantastic tonight. I’m not sure if it was a foul in the build-up to their goal and we had to dig deep and we did that superbly tonight.

“We needed to bounce back. I’m not too sure it was a point to prove because our performances in the league have been very good. It is another three points. We knew it was going to be a big game. Leon has been brilliant and when you work hard like he does you get your rewards.

“It was a good battle with Gnonto. I was feeling my back at half time. It is one of those things, the manger has put in the team to have battles like that and I’m delighted with the three points.”

Ashley Young.


“For us tonight was really important. We enjoyed the game and showed a really good team spirit. It was great to have the fans on their feet again. It is nice to get a win again at Villa Park.

“It was definitely the perfect start, we couldn’t have asked for anything better. It was brilliant from the first moment and it was great to see the team there for each other from the first moment to the last.

“It was definitely a relief to see the ball go in. It was definitely coming. I’ve had some moments where the ball wouldn’t go in but I’m glad to take that opportunity today.

“It was very important for us to get the three points, we needed the fans to get that winning feeling. I hope we can keep consistent now.”

Leon Bailey.


“Good evening. Yeah, really happy. A tough match, a difficult team. Our performance tonight was different in the first half to the second half. The first half, I think, we deserved more and, in the second half, we decided on pushing for three points.

“[On Leon Bailey] Yes! Because the last match we played against Wolves he had two chances and we drew and he was thinking about his responsibilities to score. We were helping him, supporting him. We were as well trying to give him confidence to continue and to carry on with his work. Tonight was totally different. He participated in the first goal and the second goal.

“[On Álex Moreno] He was very important and the club worked very well to have him as an option from the bench. With Lucas [Digne] injured, he was very important. His impact was good and his adaptation is going to be better having played tonight, with the rhythm and intensity. I think, for him, it’s important and for the team as well that he plays so soon.

“He has to adapt. His adaptation is going to be quicker having played tonight. He struggled a little bit with the rhythm and intensity. It was different but he reacted very, very well. He finished the match showing us his skill and he got in the box and had two good chances to score. He crossed some good balls as well. I’m so happy with him and Lucas and I want to have players competing and being better in the squad, the possibility to use different profiles with the squad and, with both, I’m so happy.

“[On Emiliano Martínez] He’s intelligent! He knows now after the World Cup, he has to do and be committed here. He came here to improve individually and the club helped him as well to be in the national team, being a protagonist and winning. But now, I’m so happy with him because we spoke about the differences between the national team and now with us. He did very good work and he has experience. He’s been amazing. He’s in his best moment of his career and now, I think, we have to share with him his moment. The supporters love him as well. When he didn’t play as well with Olsen, he accepted his role and he helped us. I think we can be so, so happy with both goalkeepers. I want to build a team, with good spirit and a small family.

“We controlled that better in the second half with positioning, keeping ball possession longer to break their pressing. The goalkeeper is very important to give us confidence, to give us calmness and to help the centre-back by making sure each action with the ball building up. Emiliano is very good at saving as he did but, as well, with the ball he can help us.

“[On whether Olsen’s lack of ability was a problem] No, I believe in Olsen. We have to be respectful to him and we won at Tottenham. We won 2-0 and he played very well.

Unai Emery.


“What a win in first gear!!”

“3 points off European places!! UTV Another relegation battle for Leeds.”

Gabby Agbonlahor.


“[On the future of Morgan Sanson] I spoke with him. He didn’t play a lot here because of different circumstances. He’s a very smart guy, a very smart player. He is very skilled and he played very well on Sunday (vs Stevenage).

“I spoke with him and, usually, he has the possibility to leave but, as well, while he’s here with us I can use him and, for example, for tomorrow he’s in the squad. He has the possibility to play tomorrow and to help us.

“But thinking about the next month with the matches, his future as well and, if he can have some opportunity to leave and to play more minutes than he’s playing here, he can leave.”

“I am so happy with him as a person. With him, every day he’s working and he’s helping the team. He’s together, his commitment, I’m so happy with him, really. I was so happy with his performance on Sunday but the result was a pity that day.”

Unai Emery.


“[On potential new signings] Maybe zero, or maybe we add one more. The January market is not easy and we only want to add players if they really will improve us and make us better as a team.

“I am so demanding with the players we can sign. I am being so demanding because we have in the squad very good players and we will only do something if we can improve. I’m speaking with Johan Lange every day about the possibilities in the transfer market.”

“But if we can add someone in the attacking third, we are ready to do it. But only if we can add one player who’ll improve the team, the squad and to help us in a different profile, maybe.”

Unai Emery.


“Villa Park at midnight after a tough battle.

“I was thinking that this is really a home, not only a Stadium.

“After the loss in FA Cup, our fans welcomed us with full confidence and unconditional support. It was one of the keys for the winning against a very good opponent.

“We are building a team and it’s easier to do if we feel the positive energy that every single fan at Villa Park is giving us. Players are totally committed with this Club.

“They are working hard. We are Aston Villa, and we are stronger together. A family.”

Unai Emery.


“Very happy for my debut, amazing Villa Park fans, great victory, 3 points!”

Álex Moreno.


“Wow. Tough on the legs but Team Spirit and Being Together As A Team got us them Big 3 Points last night. You fans helped us massively. UTV.”

Ashley Young.


“We couldn’t have asked for anything better. It was brilliant from the very first moment and it was really great to see the team be there for each other from start to end, it was very important for us.

“It’s definitely (a) relief (to score), it’s been coming and there were some more opportunities I didn’t take but I’m really excited I could take this one, it’s going to give me confidence moving forwards.

“For us tonight it was very important, as you can see. We enjoyed the game, we showed a lot of team spirit, it was great to have the fans on their feet again and it’s nice to get a win again at Villa Park.”

Leon Bailey.


“Two seasons ago we finished 11th and everyone thought the next season was going to be it.

“We were going to finish in the top half and try and get into Europe. But [then the former manager arrived and set us backwards by a huge margin and] it didn’t work out. Sometimes in football things just go that way.

“As players we know where we are and where we want to be. It has been a good start under the new boss and we just have to continue doing it, continuing improving and adapting to his style of play.

“It’s a process and one which is going really well so far. Before it was about consistency and we did not have enough of that. The boss has brought that within us. Each day is a new learning day out there. It is great to learn from a manager who has such a CV and trophies under his belt.

“There’s a lot of information. We have meetings now which are really long – I couldn’t tell you how long exactly – but we are talking hours and it really helps us.

“When you are on the pitch you see things a certain way. When you get in that room, you see different things and I feel that is how we are improving as a team, looking back at games, seeing what we can do better.

“As a player, that is what you want. You are always looking at where you can improve and that attention to detail is key.”


“I’m bored. It’s the first time I’ve done my hamstring, at 28 which I’m not getting used to. But it feels alright, hopefully in a few weeks I’ll be back.

“The gaffer always tells us that it’s a long game, 90 minutes is a long time so you have to be patient and find time to get back into the game.

“Positioning, he’s mad for positioning,.

“He talks about body position, just little details I’ve never experienced and I feel as if he’s improved me in the short-term.”

John McGinn.

*BBC Sport*
Friday, 13 January 2023

**Aston Villa may have beaten them 2-1 but Leeds boss Jesse Marsch said it was his side’s “best performance” in his 11 months in charge.**

Leon Bailey finished off a swift counter-attack to give Villa an early lead and Emiliano Buendia headed in their second before Patrick Bamford’s late strike for Leeds.

Marsch told BBC Sport: “It was the most complete performance we have had since I’ve been here. It is a really positive sign for me. It hurts to lose but a really positive performance.

“I’ve tried hard to create a process and understanding of how we want to play football. I am really satisfied to now see it start to come together.”

Marsch, who took over last February, sees his side remain two points above the drop zone.

“We have to stay focused on our process and not get stressed out by the table. I want us to stay laser focused on us,” he said.

Bailey had a hand in both goals with the Jamaican winger finishing off a counter-attack after a great run by Boubacar Kamara in just the third minute to put the hosts ahead.

That was Villa’s only shot in the first half, with Leeds having two penalty appeals rejected, a Rodrigo goal disallowed for offside and missing big chances.

Villa debutant Alex Moreno denied Rodrigo with a goalline clearance and keeper Emiliano Martinez pulled off a wonderful reaction stop to deny Jack Harrison from close range.

Unai Emery’s hosts were better in the second half and they got the goal to make them more comfortable - thanks to the video assistant referee.

Bailey’s shot was saved by Illan Meslier with Buendia heading the rebound over the grounded goalkeeper.

The goal was ruled out for offside but the VAR told referee Michael Oliver that Buendia was clearly onside - and it was given.

Leeds were given hope in the final 10 minutes though when Wilfried Gnonto cut the ball back for Bamford, making his return after two and a half months out with a groin injury, to slam home.

But they could not find an equaliser and remain only two points above the relegation zone, with Villa eight points further up the table in 11th.

It was not a perfect night for Villa, who lost left-back Lucas Digne and striker Ollie Watkins to injury in the first half.

Villa bounce back

This was Villa’s first home win since the break for the World Cup in November - and timely after last weekend’s shock FA Cup loss to Stevenage.

Veteran full-back Ashley Young was involved in most of their key moments in the game.

The goal came from a Leeds corner which Young hooked forward to Kamara, who ran half the length of the pitch before finding Bailey, whose finish was wonderful.

Moreno, a £13m signing from Real Betis, started on the bench but was needed within nine minutes after Digne suffered a shoulder injury.

He did well to deny Rodrigo after the striker had gone round the Villa keeper and later on Young blocked Gnonto’s shot after Martinez denied Harrison.

Villa had one shot in the first half - that goal - and 10 efforts in the second half.

Their second goal had similarities to their first with Young tackling Tyler Adams in the box soon before Buendia headed in at the other end.

They had a scare after Bamford netted but Philippe Coutinho went close to making it safe with a 45-yard lob that went just over.

Emery said: “We struggled in the first half and in the second half we played better. It was difficult for us to play through the press.

“It was important to score the second goal because they were playing well to try and score and they did.

“It is no surprise for me that they came back. We needed the goalkeeper and Martinez’s save was amazing.

“I am so, so happy with Leon Bailey. In the last game he had two really good chances to win the match and he was a bit upset and today he scored the goal and did the action in the second goal.”

Frustrations for Leeds

Leeds felt they should have had a penalty when Douglas Luiz put his arms on Rodrigo, but it was not given, and Harrison shot wide as play went on.

There was another shout as Tyrone Mings pulled Gnonto’s shirt at a corner - also turned down by the officials.

Rodrigo, Harrison and Gnonto all had chances before Rodrigo’s goal was disallowed.

The frontman chested down a cross to Brenden Aaronson, whose shot was blocked by Mings. Rodrigo, on the ground, hooked in the rebound - but he had been offside initially so the goal did not count.

The second half was much more even but the chances kept coming for Leeds. Gnonto curled wide and Aaronson had a shot deflected over.

They finally got the goal they deserved when teenager Gnonto span past Young before bursting down the left and setting up substitute Bamford for his first goal since 2021.

Jesse Marsch’s side pushed for an equaliser but Villa held out.

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