Aston Villa bounced back from their FA Cup defeat to Stevenage with a 2-1 home win over Leeds United as pressure builds on Jesse Marsch.
Leon Bailey’s early goal on the break gave Unai Emery’s team the advantage at Villa Park and the hosts had to withstand heavy pressure from Leeds before Emiliano Buendia doubled their lead in the second half after more good work by Bailey – and a VAR review.
Leeds had chances. Rodrigo had a shot cleared off the line by debutant Alex Moreno and another disallowed for offside, while Emiliano Martinez made a spectacular save from Jack Harrison. Patrick Bamford finally pulled one back after brilliant work by Wilfried Gnonto.
But there was to be no repeat of the sucker-punch Villa suffered against League Two opposition in their previous outing. Emery’s men were able to see it out to secure a fourth win in six Premier League games under him and move level on points with Chelsea.
Leeds’ situation is more perilous. Although this was a spirited performance, it was a flawed one too, with sections of the away support chanting for Marsch to go. They remain two points off the drop zone and without a win in seven games in all competitions.
More to follow…
Aston Villa return to action in the Premier League next Saturday with the visit of Leicester; kick-off 3pm.
Leeds face Championship side Cardiff in a third round replay in the FA Cup on Wednesday at Elland Road; kick-off 7.45pm.
Jesse Marsch’s side are back at home when they take on Brentford in the Premier League next Sunday, live on Sky Sports; kick-off 2pm.