Braving the barrage

Aston Villa stood up to West Ham's aerial bombardment to secure a much-needed Premier League win.

Last Updated: 10/02/13 at 16:41 Post Comment

So says Joe Royle after watching Paul Lambert's side register their first victory in the top division for nine games - the Villans last took three points at Liverpool on December 15 - and shoot themselves out of the relegation zone.

Christian Benteke netted from the penalty spot (74) and Charles N'Zogbia whipped in a free-kick (78) as the Midlanders downed the Hammers 2-1 at Villa Park.

Read our match report here

But former Man City and Everton boss Royle told Sky Sports HD that he was most impressed by the hosts' defensive solidity - despite Ashley Westwood scoring a late own goal (87).

"They didn't get the clean sheet they wanted but they defended better," Royle said of Aston Villa, who slipped out of the Capital One and FA Cups to lower-league opposition in January.

Inspired

"It was last-ditch defending rather than sophisticated defending because West Ham didn't offer a sophisticated threat as everything was directed to Andy Carroll - but Villa defended well and they will take great pleasure from that.

"It was inspired from Lambert to bring on Darren Bent as a substitute - not because of what he did going forward but because he kicked one off the line when it was 0-0.

"And (Villa goalkeeper) Brad Guzan did well again; he is a good shot-stopper and not afraid to come for a cross, either."

Meanwhile, on the performance of Villa midfielder N'Zogbia, Sky Sports pundit Ray Wilkins added: "He did some good things.

"He was fouled by Mark Noble for the penalty and scored a well-taken free-kick, although I think Jussi Jaaskelainen was probably too far over to his right-hand side in the West Ham goal."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

P

resumably, Diaby is in this team but receiving treatment

lee
The Pre-Season 'Is He Still There?' XI

A

deadwood 11 and not an arsenal player listed. Heady days.

EssexGooner
The Pre-Season 'Is He Still There?' XI

W

ithout doing any research I would have to say that Richard Wright is the singular most successful ex Ipswich Town player I know. Yes, thats what the kaleidoscopic whirlwind of highs and lows feels like supporting the Tractor Boys. In other exciting news I saw two, count them, TWO squirrels today. What a start to August.

hump3.
The Pre-Season 'Is He Still There?' XI

Footer 365

Premier League: Jordan Henderson looking to raise game for Liverpool and England

Jordan Henderson is aware that he needs to 'step up' for Liverpool and England following the departures of key men.

Transfer news: Manchester City hoping to complete squad with centre-half

Manchester City are planning one more summer deal, with only a centre-back required to complete their squad.

Premier League: Paul Lambert delighted to have Roy Keane at Aston Villa

Paul Lambert is enjoying working alongside Roy Keane, a man he sees becoming a key figure at Aston Villa.

Mail Box

How Can Tim Sherwood Be Out Of Work?

Don't peple know his PPG was THE BEST EVER FOR A SPURS MANAGER? We also have mails on Luis Suarez, the new fashion for 3-5-2 and more...

Plenty Of Reasons Why Lukaku's Worth It

The mailbox defends Everton's enormous outlay on Romelu Lukaku, while we also have mails on Spurs and Suarez. Oh, and worrying about the new magic spray...

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