Aston Villa held on for a 1-0 result in Saturday’s Premier League tie with Crystal Palace at Villa Park.
Villa notch a second-consecutive league victory and go level with 10th-place Chelsea on 34 points.
Joachim Andersen’s 27th-minute own goal propelled the hosts to a first home victory since January 13. Matty Cash played a low cross in from the right flank — intended for Ollie Watkins — that Andersen directed past keeper Vicente Guaita.
Cheick Doucouré was sent off for a second yellow card offense in the 62nd minute, but Villa were unable to extend their lead inside the final half hour.
Villa generated 1.15 expected goals (xG) in the match and limited Palace to 0.17 xG.
Aston Villa 1-0 Crystal Palace
Watkins’ goal-scoring streak was snapped at five games having failed to score on Saturday. The forward was named a nominee for Premier League Player of the Month for February on March 2.
Boubacar Kamara left the match injured in the 59th minute after absorbing a harsh tackle by Doucouré. On Monday it was revealed that the midfielder will be sidelined for at least one month.
Calum Chambers replaced Kamara and performed well in defensive midfield. Kamara’s natural replacement moving forward — Leander Dendoncker — missed the match with an injury. His status for this coming weekend is unknown.
“It was a very important win today,” Villa manager Unai Emery said after the match.
“We played better in the first half than in the second half. When they had the red card we didn’t react in our positioning, keeping possession longer and trying as well to be passionate, getting in the box and taking chances.”
Villa head south to London to face West Ham on Sunday afternoon. A win could see them leapfrog Chelsea if results are favorable. As it stands, Villa are five points off seventh-place Fulham, who currently occupy the Premier League’s final European qualification spot.
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