9/10 Tyrone Mings shines, 4/10 Leon Bailey woeful - Aston Villa player ratings v Liverpool
Aston Villa kept their European ambitions alive after an enthralling 1-1 draw against Liverpool that ended in nail-biting fashion at Anfield on Saturday (20 May).
Liverpool entered the game on a superb run of seven consecutive Premier League wins but Villa ended that in terrific fashion in what was an assured and dominant defensive display.
Villa’s goal came through Jacob Ramsey when he latched on to a deep Douglas Luiz cross inside 27 minutes, and after huge Liverpool pressure late on in the second half, their aggression told when the departing Roberto Firmino converted a Mo Salah cross.
Here, Villa News has rated the players out of ten for their performances at Anfield.
Emi Martinez – 7
Rarely had any major save to make and that’s simply down to the monstrous performance of his defenders in front of him. However, when Aston Villa desperately needed him to be assured, dominant and classy in goal, Martinez once again stepped up to the plate. Such a strong presence and leader in goal and to have Mings and Konsa performing as they did in front of him will have certainly delighted the Villa support and Emery. The Spaniard is building a wonderful foundation to build his side.
Matty Cash – 6
Came in for Ashley Young after returning from injury and certainly impressed in the first half in a tricky test up against Luis Diaz and the former Nottingham Forest will have given Emery something to think about in what was an assured performance all-round from Cash.
Ezri Konsa – 8
An accomplished player on the ball at the back amidst opposing pressure. Impressively never afraid to play out from defence, despite Liverpool’s aggressive press. A monstrous presence at the back for Emery who will now be sure of placing both Konsa and Mings as his long-term defensive options for the foreseeable future and that was clearly evident by his tremendous numbers, winning 100% of his ground duels, recording two clearances and three blocks [SofaScore]
Tyrone Mings – 9
Outstanding alongside Konsa once again with his stunning last-ditch blocks and tackles in what has arguably been his best season as an Aston Villa player. The England international was actually lucky not to be sent off in the first half after his high boot on Cody Gakpo, but he certainly pulled himself out of that situation with a superb captain’s performance at the back. Mings won 75% of his ground duels, recorded eight clearances, and five interceptions and was dribbled past zero times, as per SofaScore.
Lucas Digne – 6
A surprise inclusion when the team news was revealed before the game, as Alex Moreno had certainly established himself as Emery’s go-to man at left-back after recent impressive performances but Digne certainly showed his mettle in the first half, rarely giving Mo Salah a sniff, winning three of his six ground duels and four clearances [SofaScore]. Was taken off eight minutes after the break for Moreno.
Douglas Luiz – 8
What a player. Rarely lets Emery and his team down and was yet again, central to everything good about Aston Villa this afternoon. The Brazilian has smoothly become one of the best and most decisive players in the Emery setup this season, and that’s down to his dogged, aggressive but also consummate approach from the heart of the Villa midfield. Provided a wonderful assist for Ramsey’s goal, and also picked up the best SofaScore rating of any player on the pitch at 8.0/10, providing three key passes and creating two big chances in attack.
John McGinn – 8
What a pass for Watkins to win the penalty for Villa. Becoming a tremendous and reliable presence for Emery this season. His ability to manipulate the ball with his huge size and strength when playing against an opponent’s pressure is so so good, and a welcome addition to Villa’s flexibility especially when playing out from the back. Was tremendous against Tottenham Hotspur last weekend and followed that up against Liverpool. Won seven of his 11 ground duels, successfully completed three of his four dribbles in a rampant display.
Boubacar Kamara – 7
Proved a superb outlet in front of his back-line, breaking up play and assured in possession despite the disappointing Liverpool onslaught late on. Won 11 of his total duels [SofaScore] as he certainly proved his quality in his return to the starting eleven from injury
Jacob Ramsey – 7
Ramsey was quiet early on for Villa but tucked the opener superbly from a Luiz cross. His ability to run into the box and convert chances is superb and is what makes him a unique prospect in the Premier League, a massive part of Aston Villa’s potential long-term future as a regular European name.
Leon Bailey – 4
Tasked with providing Aston Villa with the speed and incision from the right-hand side but simply failed to do so as he cut a frustrated figure in an uneventful showing. Failed to register any key pass in attack, had no shots at goal and lost possession of the ball seven times as he failed to prove his worth to Emery yet again. Aston Villa will certainly be on the market for a wide player this summer, and Bailey may well find his place under threat.
Ollie Watkins – 6
Suffered a blow to the head early on in the game when he clashed with Virgil Van Dijk from a Liverpool set-piece, and thankfully was okay to continue and that head injury certainly had an effect on him after his horrible penalty miss which will have given Aston Villa a huge boost early on. Grew into the encounter as the game progressed with his terrific hold-up play but his worrying record in recent games – now six without scoring – will have Emery suffering from sleepless nights.
Ashley Young – (On for Leon Bailey 53′ ) – 6
Alex Moreno – (On for Lucas Digne 53′) – N/A
Emi Buendia – (On for Alex Moreno ) – N/A
Jhon Duran – (On for Ollie Watkins 86′) – N/A
Leandro Dendoncker – (On for Douglas Luiz 86′) N/A
In other Aston Villa news, the club should go all guns blazing for a £60million signing that Gabby Agbonlahor named a “superstar”.