Aston Villa 2-0 Newcastle United: Watkins ends purpose drought as stress on Bruce grows

Aston Villa 2-0 Newcastle United: Watkins ends purpose drought as stress on Bruce grows

Ollie Watkins opened the scoring
Ollie Watkins’ opener ended a run of 9 league video games and not using a purpose for the Villa striker

Aston Villa moved above Chelsea and Southampton into eighth within the Premier League with a win over Newcastle which elevated the stress on supervisor Steve Bruce.

Regardless of taking part in a extra constructive 5-3-2 formation, the guests had been undone by a Villa group whose supervisor Dean Smith watched from the stands following his touchline ban.

His spectacular outfit nonetheless confirmed the fast attacking interaction which has been a characteristic of their season as Ollie Watkins ended a run of 9 league video games and not using a purpose when he headed within the opener following Fabian Schar’s mistake.

Newcastle, who’ve scored solely as soon as of their previous eight video games, lacked the type of confidence in entrance of purpose that Villa confirmed in doubling their lead.

Bertrand Traore performed a one-two with Jack Grealish earlier than cannoning a shot in off the crossbar.

There have been first-half alternatives for Bruce’s aspect, who launched Allan Saint-Maximin – after a protracted coronavirus absence – and Ryan Fraser for the ultimate 19 minutes.

However after their solely shot on course within the fourth minute, they didn’t bother a Villa group who at the moment are 5 factors off fourth-placed Liverpool with two video games in hand.

Defeat for Newcastle means they’re winless in 10 video games and slip to sixteenth, seven factors above the relegation zone.

Newcastle provide higher stability however identical consequence

Newcastle followers, who’ve been vital of Bruce’s fashion, may level to Villa as a group who can play constructive attacking soccer with comparable sources.

The actual fact Villa have loved an upward curve since Bruce left the membership in 2018 is not going to be misplaced on them, and although the Newcastle supervisor was proper to say previous to this recreation that Smith has loved the advantages of final summer time’s funding in gamers, Villa have been a pleasure to observe this season.

In distinction, Newcastle, who began the season positively, have been in a rut. Debate about Bruce’s formations have been rife on Tyneside and his place got here beneath additional dialogue on Saturday after former Magpies supervisor Rafael Benitez left his job in China.

However in selecting a 5-3-2 formation, it did appear to supply a greater stability. Jonjo Shelvey, Miguel Almiron and the deeper Jeff Hendrick made up the midfield, permitting Andy Carroll to assist Callum Wilson up entrance.

For a lot of the primary half it seemed promising. However when stepping into good positions, Newcastle had been let down by poor crossing or ending, with Carroll losing two good alternatives.

Their dwindling confidence was not helped by Schar’s error when he didn’t clear Matt Targett’s first-time cross, permitting Watkins to nod previous a flapping Karl Darlow.

Traore’s end put a snug distance between the 2 sides and Newcastle by no means seemed like breaking by.

There was a short elevate as soon as Saint-Maximin and Fraser got here on with the latter virtually getting on the top of Almiron’s by ball, but it surely was one other dismal evening for Bruce, who has loads to ponder as he makes an attempt to arrest a worrying slide in the direction of the underside three.

Villa hotting up for European chase

In dropping three of their previous 4 video games, Villa have been on their worst run of the season.

But this efficiency, plus the truth that a draw and two defeats within the league got here in opposition to Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester Metropolis, confirmed that Smith’s group are nonetheless heading in the right direction, particularly after recovering from a coronavirus outbreak of their squad.

By transferring above Chelsea and inside touching distance of the highest 4, European ambitions should nonetheless characteristic in Smith’s plans.

Regardless of sitting within the stands on a freezing evening after criticising the officers within the midweek defeat by Manchester Metropolis, his aspect can have offered followers with a lot optimism for the remainder of the season with one other environment friendly attacking show.

They could have been lucky for the primary purpose, though Targett’s cross was glorious, however Traore’s fifth purpose of the season three minutes earlier than half-time typified their method regardless of Newcastle claiming Darlow was fouled beforehand.

There may have been extra for Villa, with the spectacular Grealish curling one effort extensive. The bubbling Watkins, who had a first-half strike dominated out for offside, may even have added to his 9 targets this season.

However with their defence well-marshalled by the vocal Tyrone Mings, and Douglas Luiz offering cowl in midfield, Villa ran out snug winners.

Grealish the help king

  • Jack Grealish has offered eight assists in 17 Premier League appearances for Aston Villa this season, greater than he had in his first 4 seasons within the competitors mixed (seven in 70 video games).
  • Aston Villa have stored a clear sheet in 9 of their 17 Premier League video games this season, with solely Manchester Metropolis (10) recording a shutout extra typically.
  • Aston Villa’s Ollie Watkins scored his third headed purpose within the Premier League this season, with solely Dominic Calvert-Lewin having scored extra to date this time period (4).

What subsequent?

Villa journey to face Burnley on Wednesday within the Premier League earlier than a visit to Southampton the next Saturday.

Newcastle host Leeds on Tuesday within the Premier League earlier than travelling to Everton subsequent Saturday.

Participant of the match

GrealishJack Grealish

Aston Villa

  1. Squad quantity10Participant titleGrealish

  2. Squad quantity11Participant titleWatkins

  3. Squad quantity18Participant titleTargett

  4. Squad quantity5Participant titleMings

  5. Squad quantity15Participant titleTraoré

  6. Squad quantity4Participant titleKonsa

  7. Squad quantity2Participant titleMoney

  8. Squad quantity26Participant titleMartínez

  9. Squad quantity19Participant titleNakamba

  10. Squad quantity6Participant titleDouglas Luiz

  11. Squad quantity20Participant titleBarkley

  12. Squad quantity17Participant titleTrézéguet

  13. Squad quantity41Participant titleRamsey

  14. Squad quantity21Participant titleEl Ghazi

Newcastle United

  1. Squad quantity24Participant titleAlmirón

  2. Squad quantity14Participant titleHayden

  3. Squad quantity26Participant titleDarlow

  4. Squad quantity10Participant titleSaint-Maximin

  5. Squad quantity13Participant titleWilson

  6. Squad quantity19Participant titleManquillo

  7. Squad quantity5Participant titleSchär

  8. Squad quantity6Participant titleLascelles

  9. Squad quantity21Participant titleFraser

  10. Squad quantity7Participant titleCarroll

  11. Squad quantity15Participant titleLewis

  12. Squad quantity12Participant titleGayle

  13. Squad quantity8Participant titleShelvey

  14. Squad quantity16Participant titleHendrick


Aston Villa

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 26Martínez
  • 2Money
  • 4Konsa
  • 5Mings
  • 18Targett
  • 6Douglas Luiz
  • 19Nakamba
  • 15TraoréSubstituted forTrézéguetat 80′minutes
  • 20BarkleySubstituted forEl Ghaziat 80′minutes
  • 10GrealishSubstituted forRamseyat 88′minutes
  • 11Watkins


  • 1Heaton
  • 3Taylor
  • 17Trézéguet
  • 21El Ghazi
  • 22Engels
  • 24Guilbert
  • 27El Mohamady
  • 39Davis
  • 41Ramsey


Formation 5-3-2

  • 26Darlow
  • 19ManquilloSubstituted forSaint-Maximinat 71′minutes
  • 14Hayden
  • 6LascellesBooked at 57mins
  • 5SchärBooked at 26mins
  • 15Lewis
  • 8Shelvey
  • 16Hendrick
  • 24AlmirónSubstituted forGayleat 81′minutes
  • 7CarrollBooked at 54minsSubstituted forFraserat 71′minutes
  • 13Wilson


  • 1Dubravka
  • 4M Longstaff
  • 9Joelinton
  • 10Saint-Maximin
  • 11Ritchie
  • 12Gayle
  • 17Krafth
  • 21Fraser
  • 23Murphy

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