Pass master Tyrone Mings shines - Three things learned in Aston Villa win v Crystal Palace
Aston Villa secured back-to-back wins in the Premier League with a 1-0 victory against ten-man Crytal Palace at Villa Park on Saturday (4 March).
After an early scare when Wilfried Zaha’s goal was ruled out for offside, Villa grew into the match and took the lead when Matty Cash’s dangerous low cross was diverted into his own net by Joachim Andersen.
Cheick Doucoure was given his marching orders for a quickfire collection of yellow cards in the second half as Unai Emery’s side closed out the game with relative ease.
Here Villa News look at three things we learned from the win and clean sheet at Villa Park.
Emery has been insistent since his arrival at Villa Park that he needs his centre-backs to be comfortable on the ball and happy to build up attacks from back to front.
Although both Tyrone Mings and Ezri Konsa have come under heavy criticism for the number of errors when adjusting to Emery’s needs in the past weeks, their passing was impeccable throughout the match.
The two Englishman made more passes than any other player on the pitch, with Mings completing 95% of his 79 passes and Konsa recording a pass accuracy of 95.6% from his 68 attempts. [WhoScored]
Mings’ ability to ping accurate diagonals and launch Villa’s counterattacks must also receive its own individual recognition. The 29-year-old completed 100% of his long balls (4/4) during his impressive display and wasn’t afraid to mix the short passing with a safe out-ball when he came under pressure from Crystal Palace’s aggressive press.
The Polish Cafu lives up to nickname
After missing out on an Aston Villa first-team spot in recent weeks due to the evergreen Ashley Young, Matty Cash came into the game with a point to prove.
Right from the first whistle, the 25-year-old was an attacking livewire – completing a team-high three dribbles over the 90 minutes and providing the assist for Villa’s goal with a devilish cross into no man’s land that Andersen eventually turned into his own net.
Cash was fouled twice, completed three of his four long balls and registered a 91% pass success rate down the right flank. The defender seemed to enjoy the freedom that John McGinn awarded him by often sitting back and covering the vacant spaces when Cash bombed forward.
Ramsey does the dirty work
Jacob Ramsey was back to his best on the left side of Aston Villa’s midfield against Palace, and his link-up play with Alex Moreno was seamless.
With his Spanish left-back often bombing forward beyond him, Ramsey was left to show his all-round attributes in defence, as he completed four tackles – the most of any Villa player – before being subbed off in the 70th minute. [WhoScored]
Alongside his tough tackling, the Villa academy product won two aerial duels and also completed a crucial clearance as Palace piled on the pressure as the game progressed. The gritty 1-0 win was a side that fans hadn’t seen from Ramsey before. Although still enjoying plenty of time on the ball in the final third, the midfielder’s defensive contributions will please Emery most of all.
In other Aston Villa news, the future of this loanee hangs in the balance as contract talks await.