Aston Villa 0-3 Manchester United
Manchester United put on a blistering performance in Birmingham tonight to strengthen their Champions League hopes and plunge Aston Villa into relegation despair.
Goals from Bruno Fernandes, Mason Greenwood and Paul Pogba took the Red Devils to within a point of fourth-placed Leicester City as the top four chase in the Premier League heads to a thrilling climax.
This week’s Premier League 2020 results were a mixed bag for the Red Devils, with Leicester drawing, Wolves losing and Chelsea winning, but they certainly did their bit tonight, while sorry Villa are facing a huge task to secure survival.
Highlights of the game
It’s all about confidence when you’re near the bottom of the table, and Aston Villa tried to build theirs with a positive start — and they certainly had the better of the first quarter of the game. Anwar El Ghazi made inroads into the United half and was upended by Fernandes, giving the Villains an early chance from 25 yards.
Douglas Luiz took the responsibility but fired his free-kick straight into the United defensive wall. Villa captain Jack Grealish has been touted as a potential Manchester United player, and he had a chance to shine when he met Ezri Konsa’s deep cross first time, but his volley flew over the bar.
Villa then came within inches of going ahead when Trezeguet picked Paul Pogba’s pocket and drove towards the edge of the United penalty area before unleashing a low shot which cannoned off the post with De Gea stranded.
For all Villa’s endeavour, they couldn’t take advantage, and they paid the price on 26 minutes when Fernandes — who’d been quiet so far — turned the game with two pieces of skill. First, he turned quickly on the edge of the box drawing a foul from Konsa; and when VAR awarded a penalty he climbed to his feet to hit it sweetly into the bottom left corner for his seventh goal for the Red Devils.
Villa boss Dean Smith was furious, believing the United star left his foot on Konsa to instigate the foul; and to be fair to him it was a close call.
At 18 years old, Mason Greenwood is the youngest scorer in the Premier League this season and he showed just why Ole Gunnar Solskjaer rates him so highly when he jinked his way into the Villa penalty area and hit a shot which Pepe Reina did well to save low to his left. Then, on the brink of half time, Fernandes missed a sitter after Luke Shaw played a one-two with Anthony Martial and delivered a perfect cross, but the Portuguese midfielder headed inches over with the goal gaping.
But Villa didn’t make it to half time before Greenwood made it two with a powerful drive from the edge of the area, Tyrone Mings failed to close the young striker down and the hosts had a mountain to climb.
United wing-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka almost made the hosts’ task insurmountable in the first move of the second half, but his point-blank header flew wide.
But Villa were beaten.
Marcus Rashford fired past Reina into the net but Paul Pogba had wandered offside. The Frenchman made amends, though Rashford may not have been impressed when he beat the Villa goalkeeper from 20 yards to make it 3-0. And then, with half an hour remaining, Anthony Martial smashed an angled drive against the crossbar.
The Red Devils are getting stronger by week but the games are running out for Villa.
Recent form suggested the Red Devils would be far too hot for Aston Villa having won their last three Premier League games by a three-goal margin and they did so again today, with some ease.
Manchester United are in great form, unbeaten in 17 games, whilst Aston Villa haven’t won any of their last 11 matches.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side has had a kind run of fixtures since the return, facing Bournemouth, Norwich City and Brighton before meeting with another relegation battler tonight.
The next run of games look a little tougher, with matches against Southampton, Crystal Palace and Chelsea over the next ten days.
At the other end of the table, the Premier League 2020 betting odds in the relegation scene don’t look good for 19th placed Aston Villa, who are four points from safety.
Their run-in will test Dean Smith’s side to the limit and they need to find some form quickly. They face Crystal Palace, Everton, Arsenal and then, on the final day, a potential shoot-out against West Ham.
There is plenty of Premier League action on the way and we’ll be all over it here at SBOBET, with twists and turns guaranteed to come don’t miss a minute of it!
CHECK OUT OUR BLOG FOR MORE FOOTBALL STORIES & ODDS
Stay updated with everything sports and betting.