Win sees Villa close to safety

Aston Villa all-but preserved their Premier League status with a 3-1 victory over FA Cup finalists Hull City.

Last Updated: 03/05/14 at 23:49 Post Comment

Andreas Weimann celebrates steering Villa to safety

Andreas Weimann celebrates steering Villa to safety

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Andreas Weimann - without a goal since January - proved Villa's hero with two headers late in the first half after a Jordan Bowery own goal had cancelled out Ashley Westwood's opening-minute effort.

With their top flight place under threat ahead of kick-off, the Villa midfielder had given home supporters the perfect nerve-settler when he slotted into the bottom corner after great work by Gabby Agbonlahor.

The hosts were good value for their advantage until they were caught napping by Tom Huddlestone's free-kick in the 26th minute. The midfielder found Liam Rosenior who fizzed the ball across the six-yard box only to be turned into his own net by substitute Jordan Bowery, on for the unfortunate Agbonlahor.

The visitors - still needing a point themselves to be mathematically safe - then looked in control until Weimann took over on 41 minutes.

After forcing a corner with some great work down the City right, the Austrian was on hand to nod home from close range after Nathan Baker was denied twice - first by Nikica Jelavic's goal-line block then by a combination of the bar and Steve Harper's reflexes.

Then right on half-time, Weimann struck again with a wonderful near-post header from Bowery's cross which evaded Harper to send the home fans into ecstasy.

Roared on by their fans, Villa continued to press after the break with Weimann looking a continual threat until he was replaced late on to a deserved standing ovation.

Jelavic snatched at a half chance midway through the second period but Hull rarely looked like threatening to snatch a point with Brad Guzan a reassuring presence throughout as the home side climbed above Steve Bruce's side.

Manager Paul Lambert's former side Norwich will now need to score an avalanche of goals while winning their remaining games to cause any further concern for Villa fans this season.

With the Canaries away to Chelsea on Sunday and hosting Arsenal next weekend, Villa fans can safely shelve their relegation fears.

Hull, a point further back with 37, are also unlikely to be hauled in by Norwich but their three-game winless run bodes ill for their FA Cup final appearance against the Gunners on May 17.

Villa got off to the dream start as they took the lead from their first attack. Agbonlahor did the hard work, motoring past Rosenior as the pair jostled on the halfway line.

Agbonlahor then showcased the other side of his game, barging past Curtis Davies before cutting back from the left wing. Marc Albrighton fluffed his first-time finish but recovered to lay the ball across the area to Westwood, who swept home clinically.

The crowd erupted as their nervous energy gave way to raucous celebration and the home side responded by dominating the next 20 minutes.

Fabian Delph and Westwood were in complete control of the midfield, with Jake Livermore and Huddlestone chasing shadows.

Bruce responded by switching from 4-4-2 to 3-5-2, but it was an old fashioned set-piece rather than tactical tinkering that brought the equaliser.

After Livermore won a free-kick in dangerous territory, Huddlestone suckered Villa by feigning to shoot and slipping Rosenior into the left channel.

He sent the ball across the area, doing enough to panic Bowery into a messy own-goal even though there was a strong suspicion of offside.

The silence from the stands was deafening and for the next few minutes Villa seemed spooked.

Had Huddlestone's left-footed drive not been saved superbly by Guzan, things would surely have taken a turn for the worse.

Instead, Villa reclaimed the initiative in the 41st minute thanks to Weimann's close range header and the home side didn't look back once the Austrian made it safe right on half time.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

More Match Results

Monday, 15 December 2014
20:00
Everton 3-1 QPR Report
Sunday, 14 December 2014
16:00
Swansea 1-2 Tottenham Report
13:30
Man Utd 3-0 Liverpool  
Saturday, 13 December 2014
17:30
Arsenal 4-1 Newcastle Report
15:00
Burnley 1-0 So'ton Report
Chelsea 2-0 Hull City Report
C Palace 1-1 Stoke Report
Leicester 0-1 Man City  
S'land 1-1 West Ham  
W Brom 1-0 A Villa Report

Footer 365

Premier League: Joe Hart agrees long-term contract with Manchester City

Joe Hart has signed a new long-term contract which keeps him at Manchester City until the end of the 2018-19 season.

Premier League: Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert says Manchester United can still win title

Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert believes Saturday's opponents Manchester United can still win the Barclays Premier League.

Premier League: Manuel Pellegrini confident James Milner will sign new deal at Manchester City

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini is confident James Milner will soon sign a new contract with the club.

Mail Box

More Players In The Wrong Bloody Shirt

Plus Cristiano Ronaldo, who looks 'heart-breakingly well-suited to a Real Madrid shirt' according to one United fan. Plus, words from the good doctor and plenty more...

Players Plainly Wearing The Wrong Strip...

There are some players who just look plain daft in whatever shirt they're wearing. Like Cesc and Robin. It's a cracking mailbox with a load of different themes...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property