Aston Villa were frustrating and, well, flopped in front of goal this evening. The international break has come at the right time.
Words: Regan Foy | @findfoy
Aston Villa hosted Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur this evening at Villa Park, the first time these two sides had met in the current season.
The opening ten minutes were relatively even, with both sides enjoying attacking impetus. Both sides looked to start the game the stronger side, and in doing so almost balanced each-other out in the early stages.
By the 20th minute, Aston Villa had taken much of the game in their stride and looked by far the better of the two sides – showcased by Mourinho’s moody sulk in his technical area.
In the 29th minute, much against the run of play, a poor Martinez clearance put Aston Villa in trouble and allowed Lucas Moura in at the back post to square into Carlos Vinicius for a tap-in into an open goal.
Aston Villa struggled to get back into the half, which turned into an affair filled with fouls and scrappiness.
The two sides went into the break with Spurs ahead, but the game had very much been in Aston Villa’s favour – despite the lack of efforts to test Hugo Lloris with.
In the second half, Harry Kane almost doubled Spurs’ lead within three minutes as he curled an effort just around Martinez’ post – with thanks to a slight deflection from Tyrone Mings.
Tottenham were forced into a change in the 56th minute as Reguilon could not longer continue after a few knocks, and replaced the left-back with Ben Davies. A few minutes later, and Dean Smith opted to replace Bertrand Traore with Anwar El Ghazi.
Ten minutes later and both sides had made another change each. Bergwijn joined the fray for Spurs, whilst Ross Barkley replaced Morgan Sanson – hoping to fix his own form and salvage something from the game for Aston Villa.
The 67th minute saw Matty Cash concede a poor penalty, sliding into Harry Kane from behind as the ball was rolling out of play. Kane stepped up to take the penalty and placed it past Martinez into the bottom right.
Hojbjerg forced Martinez into a strong save in the 77th minute as he struck a pacy shot from the edge of the box. Trezeguet was replaced by Keinan Davis in the 78th minute for Aston Villa.
Aston Villa continued to play with a lack of, well, anything. A frustrating and disappointing performance with very little attacking ability or confidence.
Much better needed.