Aston Villa Football Club found out their opponents in the EFL Championship play-off final. Frank Lampard’s Derby County pulled-off a thrilling upset at Elland Road.
When Aston Villa kick-off on Monday, May 27 for a chance to return to the Premier League, they won’t be facing Leeds United.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side were upset in thrilling fashion when Harry Wilson, Mason Mount and company pushed four goals past the Whites and goalkeeper Kiko Casilla.
Holding a narrow 1-0 lead after an away victory in the first leg, Leeds took control in the first-half with another strike courtesy of winger-converted-left-back Stuart Dallas. With a two goal advantage and a home crowd behind them it looked as though Villa would get a chance at revenge against the club it played just last month (that ended in, uh, controversy). But disaster struck just before the halftime whistle when Casilla and central defender Liam Cooper collided outside the penalty area.
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Derby forward Jack Marriott, on his first touch as a ~40th-minute substitute, scored to open the game back up.
Mason Mount scored directly after the break to make it tied 2-2 on aggregate. Soon after, Harry Wilson converted a penalty kick to shock Leeds’ fans. Suddenly, it looked as though Villa’s presumptive opponent was dead in the water.
Dallas added a second on the 62nd-minute to make it 3-all, but Derby continued to mount pressure until, ultimately, Gaetano Berardi, was booked twice for heavy challenges in one run. Had Leeds advanced, he would have missed the final.
Derby were able to score the winner against 10-men when Marriott chipped over the ‘keeper with five minutes remaining, sending the club to Wembley.
Left-back Scott Malone did Villa a solid when he got sent-off in extra time.
Therefore, Derby will have to rely on veteran Ashley Cole (who is returning from injury) for 90 minutes. It’s Villa vs. Derby for a chance at a return to England’s top flight.