Aston Villa squandered a slender 1-0 lead to draw 1-1 with hosts Preston North End Saturday. Which was a shame, as there was ground to be gained on the day given other results. Bottom line, the side haven’t looked the same without Jack Grealish.
The Potters came visiting, the weather was terrible, and Aston Villa looked out of sorts as they clawed their way to a 2-2 draw with Stoke. It probably goes down as the side’s worst performance so far under Dean Smith, but there were still some positives.
On Saturday, Aston Villa delivered their most comprehensive performance of the season to put hosts Derby County to the sword 0-3 and gain their first away victory since the season opener at Hull. For vast swaths of the game Villa dominated play, and for once it was the opponent that looked dazed and demoralized at the final whistle.
Following Dean Smith’s first full week of training with the Villa squad, Bolton came to Villa Park Friday night and were sent home on the wrong end of a 2-0 scoreline with Jack Grealish and James Chester providing the goals. By Smith’s own admission it was a mediocre performance, but it was a needed three points and clean sheet.
A packed and raucous Villa Park welcomed the Swans on Saturday, and Dean Smith came away with a 1-0 debut win thanks to Tammy Abraham’s 8th-minute header. Let’s get to it.