Our 3️⃣ points after electric Aston Villa brush Man City aside | OneFootball

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Joel Sanderson-Murray·6 December 2023

Our 3️⃣ points after electric Aston Villa brush Man City aside

Article image:Our 3️⃣ points after electric Aston Villa brush Man City aside

Aston Villa produced a ferocious performance to see off Manchester City at Villa Park, moving above the champions and into third in the process.

Here is what we made of it.


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The Villains of the piece

Article image:Our 3️⃣ points after electric Aston Villa brush Man City aside

This will go down as a shock result but on reflection of the 90 minutes Unai Emery’s side overawed their visitors and come away with a 14th consecutive home victory.

Villa penned City back into their own half, doing something to the champions barely seen in Pep Guardiola’s time in charge of the club.

His team simply couldn’t breathe. Villa wouldn’t let them. Ollie Watkins never stopped running, John McGinn was industrious while Diego Carlos and Pau Torres were as assured as anything at the back.

The stall was set from the first minute, with the hosts peppering City’s goal with 13 shots in the first half alone – the most a Guardiola team has ever fced in the first 45 minutes of a game, while they also won the ball back in the final 13 times which is, you guessed it, something that hasn’t happened to City under Guardiola.

That 14th successive home victory was a club record equalled by Villa, last achieved in 1931, a season in which they finished second.

City were outfought and outplayed tonight. Relentless.


Out of Control

Article image:Our 3️⃣ points after electric Aston Villa brush Man City aside

Much will be made of Rodri’s absence – this was a fourth defeat for City in the games the Spaniard has missed – but Guardiola will be tearing his proverbial hair out at what his creative players tonight.

Villa’s pressing didn’t allow City room to get up the pitch and affect the game and it led to City accumulating 0.00xG after the 11th minute of this game tonight.

There were just two shots from the visitors, and they both came from Erling Haaland who did force Emi Martínez to pull off two world-class saves to keep the scoreline at 0-0.

But just as much as the presence of Rodri was missed in the middle, the sharp eye and magical feet of Kevin De Bruyne, or lack thereof at the moment, was more evident at the moment.

City appear to adapted their style to a more frantic, counter-attacking approach this season to benefit the abilities of summer signing Jeremy Doku.

Now Guardiola has had the full experience of having no control over the game.


Are Villa the real deal?

Article image:Our 3️⃣ points after electric Aston Villa brush Man City aside

Do we need to start including Aston Villa in the … title race conversation?

Emery has worked wonders in England’s second city, earning his 31st win in his 50th game in charge of the club tonight, and after a decade of limbo followed by relegation to the second tier of English football Villa can begin to dream again.

A European adventure in the Europa Conference League is being paired with a push for the top four but forget that … a title challenge is on.

Tonight’s win puts them within four points of league leaders Arsenal.

Villa’s next game? Arsenal. At fortress Villa Park.

We’ll get the popcorn ready.