Aston Villa struggled to make the most of a 23-minute man advantage against West Ham United in front of a sold out Villa Park.
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Starting XI: Tom Heaton (GK), Frederic Guilbert, Bjorn Engels, Tyrone Mings, Neil Taylor, Marvelous Nakamba, John McGinn, Jack Grealish (C), Anwar El Ghazi, Jota Peleteiro, Wesley Moraes
Aston Villa faced West Ham United in their first taste of Premier League Monday Night Football this season at Villa Park, displaying their evergreen third kit under the lights.
West Ham United had the first of the chances, a blocked shot from Yarmolenko after some poor defensive contribution from Anwar El Ghazi saw the ball fall to him in the box.
John McGinn netted the ball in the 7th minute, but the whistle had already blown as he was adjudged to have fouled Ogbonna in the build up.
Wesley had Aston Villa’s best chance of the game up to this point as he headed a Jack Grealish cross just over the bar.
Arthur Masuaka received the first yellow card of the game for a late challenge on Frederic Guilbert which left the French fullback writhing on the floor and requiring treatment.
Jack Grealish was then booked in the 28th minute for his first foul of the game, just a fraction late on Felipe Anderson. Mark Noble, on the other hand, was booked for his fourth foul of the game a minute later.
Anwar El Ghazi and Tyrone Mings had a coming together in the 35th minute after Tyrone Mings had a few choice words about El Ghazi’s lack of defensive contribution. The two had a clash of heads before other team-mates got involved.
West Ham reacted to this like a rabid dog catching the smell of raw meat, and started to look like they wanted to get a real hold of the game.
In the 40th minute Anwar El Ghazi received a sucker-punch from Lukasz Fabianski as he rose for an in-swinging Jota cross. Fabianski got there first and Anwar took the brunt of it for it.
On the brink of half-time, Wesley had a header well saved by Fabianski – but was offside in the build-up anyway.
Just after, McGinn had a shot from just inside the box after a well worked Aston Villa counter attack and forced Fabianski into an incredible save.
Anwar El Ghazi remained on the pitch for the second half after much discussion on social media and Sky Sports around whether he would be subbed off.
Jack Grealish forced a save from Fabianski in the 52nd and the ball fell to John McGinn at the edge of the box. After a swift turn, the Scot turned the ball just wide of the post.
El Ghazi forced a save from Fabianski after John McGinn found him on the edge of the box – but the Dutchman’s scissor-kick was weak.
West Ham United made the first change of the game in the 61st minute, replacing Andriy Yarmolenko with Pablo Fornals.
Ahmed Elmohamady graced Villa Park in the 65th minute, replacing Jota on the wing.
Arthur Masuaku was shown a second yellow for a late clip on Elmohamady as the Egyptian took his first touch of the ball. This resulted in Felipe Anderson being replaced by Pablo Zabaleta in the 69th.
Whilst Aston Villa were trying to push forwards and make the most of their man advantage, Tyrone Mings managed to make an excellent block from a resulting Hammers counter-attack.
Tyrone Mings was booked in the 78th minute for leading with his arm in a challenge on Sebastian Haller.
The 81st minute saw Douglas Luiz replace Marvelous Nakamba, who had a strong showing on his Villa Park debut despite a few misplaced passes. His first action was a naive foul on Haller a minute later.
The 84th minute saw Aston Villa make their final change of the game, with a gassed Frederic Guilbert replaced by Keinan Davis.
Jack Grealish had a chance to give Aston Villa the lead in front of the Holte End in the 87th, but his stretched leg just didn’t get enough contact on the ball.
Aston Villa tried to pick up the pace in added time, but they had left it too little too late and had to settle for a point.