Chelsea were deserved winners at Stamford Bridge this evening as Aston Villa looked a different side to those who secured a point at Old Trafford.
Words: Regan Foy | @findfoy
Aston Villa travelled to Stamford Bridge for the second away game in a three-game week this evening, to face Frank Lampard’s Chelsea.
The opening five minutes saw Aston Villa looking a little nervy, with Marvelous Nakambva looking vaguely like his time out of the squad had left him a little bereft of tactical nous.
The opening ten or so saw Chelsea dominance, with the home side enjoying 72% of the possession and the opening two attempts on goal – with one on target from Willian.
Mason Mount headed towards the Aston Villa goal in the 18th minute after Kante’s ball found him in acres of space, but his attempt was straight at Tom Heaton.
It was always going to Tammy Abraham that opened the scoring with Chelsea’s early dominance. Reece James played a ball over from a central position, where Tammy was free to head over an onrushing Tom Heaton. The forward didn’t celebrate.
For Aston Villa, their chances were numbered – but a well-worked passage of play got them back into the game in the 42nd minute, resulting in Elmohamady firing a beautiful ball into the box which Trezeguet headed onto his own feet, wrongfooting Kepa as the ball went into the net. Good fortune, but a great passage of play in the build-up.
Mason Mount received the first yellow of the game in the 44th for pulling Matt Targett to the floor.
It took just three minutes in the second half for Chelsea to gain the advantage again. Willian had a lot of time on the edge of the box before he lobbed a ball into the box, which Abraham controlled on his chest for Mason Mount to volley past Tom Heaton.
The 58th minute saw Conor Hourihane replaced by Douglas Luiz.
Willian forced Tom Heaton into a strong save in the 60th minute, as his shot took a deflection from Matt Targett’s rear.
Matt Targett was booked for a foul on Willian to dispell a potential counter-attack in the 63rd minute.
Tammy Abraham came agonisingly close to grabbing a second via a Chelsea counter, as his shot bounced in front of the goal and went out for an Aston Villa goal kick.
Jota made his return from injury for Aston Villa in the 75th minute as he replaced goalscorer Trezeguet.
Willian was denied from scoring a free-kick in the 80th with a strong hand from Tom Heaton, before the goalkeeper pounced on the ball to dispell any further threat.
Matteo Kovacic was booked for pulling John McGinn to the ground in the 81st.
Tammy Abraham was replaced by Michy Batshuayi for Chelsea in the 82nd.
Douglas Luiz forced Kepa into a great save with a strong header in the 89th minute, before 4 minutes of time were added.