Villa beat Spurs the Emery way

It is not easy to write blogs on a regular basis unless you have a real passion for writing. I enjoy writing but not to the extent that I want to write all the time. I love Aston Villa; they are a big part of my life. You are probably wondering where I am going with this.

Following our 3rd win in four Premier League games under Unai Emery it got me thinking about how invested I am in the Spaniard and the ‘what could be’ under his leadership. Upon his appointment, I read and watched much material about his career. As I sat there watching Villa beat Tottenham in their backyard yesterday, it took me back to some of the material I previously referred to.

The manner in which Villa beat Spurs was typical of Unai Emery. The tactical approach, the solid foundations, the team togetherness, I could go on. It is still early days in the Emery reign but I can’t help but get excited about the future and I am fully invested in the 51-year-old.

Positive feelings and news around Aston Villa aren’t always good for blogs like this one. We tend to get more people coming to websites like this when things aren’t going as well which is bizarre in my view. I have tied with the idea of shutting up shop where the blog is concerned for a little while now but at the same time, I want to see this current reign through because I’m excited. Anyway, enough about me and the blog and on to the fantastic away result in the capital yesterday.

A clean sheet and New Year’s Day delight.

Emery shocked many when he picked Robert Olsen in the Villa goal ahead of our returning World Cup Winner, Emi Martinez. As usual, it didn’t take some media outlets to jump on the bandwagon with some suggesting a problem in the one hour between the team news being released and kick-off.

“It was our plan,” Emery confirmed when speaking to Sky Sports.

“He needed to rest and then he would be available today. But he only trained two times. We are going to do our plan with him and he is today on the bench. Robin is playing.”

Part of me expected it and I fully expect our Number 1 to be back between the sticks in the near future.

In truth, the first half wasn’t pretty on the eye in 45 minutes of few chances. Both sides cancelled each other out with both goalkeepers pretty quiet.

Ollie Watkins had the only chance for the visitors in the first half when he cut in from the left but dragged his effort well wide.

Five minutes before half-time, Spurs finally created their first chance when Clément Lenglet picked out the run of Ivan Perisic. The Croatian was forced wide by Olsen but still managed to stand up a cross towards the far post where Harry Kane headed towards goal, only for Ashley Young to clear off the line with a diving header.

Villa opened the scoring five minutes after the break through Emi Buendia. Douglas Luiz shot from distance straight towards Hugo Lloris but the French keeper was unable to handle the ball, Watkins reacted quickest beating him to the ball before laying off Buendia who slotted home to give the visitors the lead.

Spurs could have been level moments later when Young missed his header but Perisic could only fire his effort high and wide.

The visitors began to take control of the game and always looked more likely to score again and they soon doubled their lead 17 minutes from time.

My player of the match, Boubacar Kamara won the ball in Tottenham’s half and found Luiz, who played the ball to John McGinn while continuing his run into the Spurs box. The Scottish international picked out the Brazilian with a lovely lofted pass back to Luiz who controlled with his first touch and scored with his second.

Villa takes all three points, alongside a clean sheet. Prior to Emery’s appointment, they had managed just two points and three goals on the road so far this season compared to the six points and four since!

Up next for Villa is Wolves at Villa Park as they approach a run of winnable games. The kind of games we usually slip up in so this will be an interesting period for Villa.


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