Villa yet again strengthen their hopes of a European position with a dominant victory over Spurs. The Midlands side’s high line time again foxed the Spurs front three, catching players offside time and again. A very dodgy refereeing performance and a questionable VAR penalty call meant Villa only won 2-1, despite the utter domination.
Aston Villa Player Ratings for Spurs (H)
By Charles Hay
Emi Martinez – 7
Made a key save from Harry Kane in the second half at pivotal moment in the game. Martinez was later unlucky to concede the penalty from VAR overturning the ref’s initial call. Kane certainly looked to have fashioned contact, changing direction into the keeper after pushing the ball past him. Unlucky, as Martinez was on course for sixth consecutive clean sheet at Villa Park.
Ashley Young – 8
A veteran’s performance. Richarlison was kept silent and Young played his role in Villa’s high line perfectly. A solid performance and a well deserved standing ovation when he was substituted, despite slicing his shot across the box. Getting Villa into Europe would be a fitting reward for his season’s contribution.
Ezri Konsa – 8
Mr Consistent. Again, played the high-line fantastically and largely kept Kane silent. It isn’t suprising to see Diego Carlos still on the bench considering the performances Konsa and Mings have been putting in week in, week out. 96.1% tidy, although he keeps it conservative
Tyrone Mings – 8
Commander of the backline, helped clear the ball up the pitch well and had many good clearances. These consistent results are often spearheaded by the centre-back pairing and just keep doing things right.
Alex Moreno – 8
A peach of a cross was one of the highlights of the game but overall Moreno controlled the left side of the pitch. Kulusevski, Richarlison, Royal, Porro, it didn’t matter – Moreno had the upper hand offensively and defensively. The Spaniard is really benefitting the team and is fast cementing his position as one of the best left-backs in the league.
Leon Bailey – 8
Could Leon Bailey have revived his Villa career against Spurs? A much improved performance for the Jamaican saw him register an assist, and consistently placed passes at the feet of Villa players. Time and time again, he gave Spurs defenders something to think about. A much improved performance.
John McGinn – 9
A dominating game for McGinn, as his turning power left everyone confused and completely opened up a midfield which he controlled. A real statement performance in terms of next season too, as McGinn led by example, and showcased the upside of his ability under Emery.
Douglas Luiz – 8
Although he scored a fabulous free kick, the only fault I saw with Luiz was his other set pieces. Very few actually worked, and Villa seemed poor from set plays until Dougie’s strike beat Forster in the Spurs net. Also, being a little sluggish and allowing himself to be pick-pocketed that led to Harry Kane’s chance that forced a decent save from Martinez. Similarly to McGinn, Luiz controlled the midfield, created space, and link the defence and attack. 93.9% Saw more of the ball then any Villa player and yet still managed an impressive 93.9% passing accuracy
Jacob Ramsey – 8
Wonderful from the young Englishman. His link-up and understanding with Moreno is strengthening by the week and yet again they played well together. A wonderfully timed run for to score the opener. He’s certainly doing the kind of stuff that will keep him in Emery’s plans next season.
Emi Buendia – 7
Good from the Argentinian but he was perhaps not as involved as he would have liked to have been, in terms of how much he actually saw of the ball. However, he did have one shot rattle the crossbar in the first half
Ollie Watkins – 7
Fewest touches for a Villa starter but he did well in his aerial duels. Watkins statistically has form dips after the births of his children and the dip is currently on show, going goalless after his impressive consecutive scoring record earlier in the year.
Villa’s End of Season Sale
Off the Bench
Jhon Duran (’67) – 6
His eight touches really just brought a fresh leg presence for the backline of Spurs to deal with. He won his two aerial duels though and was always keen to get stuck in.
Boubacar Kamara (’67) – 7
Kamara just sured up the defence and midfield, preventing any major Spurs attacks. He also allowed McGinn to go further forward, as Villa looked for a third.
Matty Cash (’90) – N/A
It was good to see the return from injury for the Polish Cafu.
Listen to the latest MOMS Podcast
Unai Emery – 9
Brilliant from the Spaniard. The extra high line was really effective in shackling Spurs front three. His decision to start McGinn more centrally alongside Luiz also paid dividends to winning the midfield battle.
With a fully fit squad able for the final two games (possibly with the exception of Coutinho), the team have left themselves in a decent position, still having an outside chance of European qualification.