Trezeguet

Chelsea too much for scrappy Aston Villa

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Tammy Abraham and Mason Mount helped Chelsea snap a 3-match winless run with a 2-1 defeat of Aston Villa on Wednesday at Stamford Bridge.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

The Blues improve to 29 points, six better than fifth place Wolves. They out shot the visitors 25-9, putting nine shots on target.

Trezeguet scored in the losing effort for 15th place Villa, who makes three teams just a point above the Bottom Three.


Three things we learned

1. Chelsea’s dormant Mount erupts: It had been a while since the Blues’ youngster scored, but Mount made it count. Aston Villa allowed Willian ages on the right side of the 18, and the Brazilian’s cross to Abraham wound up with Mount. He tore into the shot for his fourth goal of the year.

2. Villa finds its level: Dean Smith‘s men have the quality to stay up in their first season back in the Premier League, and are definitely more talented than many of the sides in the relegation mix. But they are now 1D-5L in their first meetings with the “Big Six.” It’s commendable that the Villans already look a mid-table side, to be sure, but that extra something special isn’t there against the top clubs.

3. Pulisic Watch: Chelsea’s “Captain America” went 85 minutes in the win, subbing off for Callum Hudson-Odoi. He wasn’t a part of the goals, but was again tidy in tight spaces and a good part of Chelsea’s possession. Pulisic forced a save out of Heaton that Abraham couldn’t finish, and nearly cashed in on a free kick rebound in tight. He finished an 88 percent passer with five shots (three blocked, one on target), winning 10 of 18 duels and making one tackle.

Man of the Match:


Chelsea was lively early, with Mason Mount getting two chances before Abraham put the Blues on the board.

Reece James whipped in a cross that Abraham headed over Tom Heaton, the ex-Villa loanee neglecting a celebration for his 11th of the season.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Mount put Chelsea ahead after the break, his first in seven league matches, when Abraham trapped Willian’s cross and Mount was there to take in the spoils.

Heaton denied Willian’s free kick near the 80th minute, and Pulisic couldn’t quite win the race to a rebound chance.

Wolves unbeaten in 7 after sinking Aston Villa

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Wolves ran their Premier League unbeaten streak to seven with a 2-1 defeat of Aston Villa at the Molineux on Sunday.

Ruben Neves and Raul Jimenez supplied the goals, a clean sheet spoiled by Trezeguet’s stoppage time tally.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Wolves now sit eighth with 16 points, five more than 17th place Aston Villa.


Three things we learned

1. Wolves again ready to threaten the Top Six: A slow start to the season, rife with Europa League congestion, had Nuno Espirito Santo‘s Wolves wallowing in the Bottom Three. No more. Wolves’ only loss since September was a League Cup defeat against Villa, who fought hard but didn’t have the hosts’ level of class on Sunday. Look out (again) for Nuno’s men.

2. Stop us if you’ve read this one before: The old, worn-out maxim that “(Player X) only scores bangers” comes very close to being true when it comes to Ruben Neves. The 22-year-old hasn’t met a shot from distance he doesn’t love, but this one off the training ground was the right call at the right time. And the seeing-eye quality of it all…

3. El Tri’s target man keeps firing: Raul Jimenez’s finished off the scoring with his 13th goal in 22 matches across all competitions, many of them coming late in matches. The Mexican forward also has three assists, and he continues to deliver for Nuno Espirito Santo in tight affairs.

Man of the Match: Adama Traore — The recent Spain call-up was all over the field as usual, hitting the woodwork with a shot and grabbing an assist. Credited with an absurd nine successful dribbles, his development under Nuno has been nothing short of sensational.


Wolves had the first two corners of the match, and Villa was soon forced into a change when second choice keeper Jed Steer — filling in for injured Tom Heaton — suffered a leg injury and limped off the pitch.

He was replaced by Norwegian international Orjan Nyland, who arrived from Ingolstadt in 2018 and played 23 times in the Villa’s promotion campaign.

[ MORE: Premier League stats ] 

Diogo Jota misread a 3v2 break, then headed to Nyland under pressure.

Then a short free kick routine set up Ruben Neves in his office, and he delivered with typical aplomb.

Jota‘s second half bid to make it 2-0 was well-saved by Nyland.

PL AT HALF: Man City, Liverpool behind at the break

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The Premier League is very much dealing in unpredictability on Saturday, where Liverpool and Manchester City sit behind the 8-ball after 45 minutes of play.

[ MORE: Solskjaer reacts to loss ]

Elsewhere, Arsenal leads despite the visiting Wolves looking quite good, Newcastle has two and may well have had four at West Ham, while Sheffield United has a lead at Burnley.

Only one match remains 0-0.


Arsenal 1-0 Wolves – CNBC [STREAM]

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has another goal, and he found the finishing easy after some fine work from Alexandre Lacazette.

Aston Villa 1-0 Liverpool [STREAM]

Trezeguet collects a John McGinn free kick and beats Alisson Becker between the legs to open the scoring at Villa Park.

Brighton 0-0 Norwich –  [STREAM]

Nothing cooking at the Amex.

Sheffield United 3-0 Burnley[STREAM]

Fantasy darling John Lundstram is on the board twice for the Blades against Sean Dyche‘s visitors, with John Fleck adding a third.

West Ham United 0-2 Newcastle United[STREAM]

The center backs are on the board, as Newcastle has its first multi-goal game of the season through Ciaran Clark and Federico Fernandez.

Manchester City 0-1 Southampton – NBCSN [STREAM]

Stuart Armstrong‘s rain-soaked rip was fumbled by Ederson and James Ward-Prowse bundled home to give Saints a surprising lead

Watch Live: Spurs v. Aston Villa

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Harry Kane leads the line as Tottenham Hotspur hosts Aston Villa to kick off both teams’ Premier League seasons on Saturday at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (Watch live, 12:30 p.m. ET on NBC and online via NBCSports.com)

WATCH LIVE ONLINE

Dean Smith has four new players in his starting lineup, including Trezeguet, Wesley, and long time PL backstop Tom Heaton.

The suspended Heung-Min Son misses out for Spurs, and Giovani Lo Celso is not yet ready to join his new team.

LINEUPS

Aston Villa sign Egyptian star Trezeguet

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Aston Villa continue to spend money as if it’s going out of fashion.

Villa made their ninth signing of the summer transfer window on Wednesday, as Egyptian winger Trezeguet (full name Mahmoud Ahmed Ibrahim Hassan) arrives at Villa Park.

Trezeguet, 24, joins from Kasimpasa for a fee believed to be in the region of $10 million initially with add-ons, as newly-promoted Villa have now spent $140 million on new players this summer.

Speaking about the arrival of the Egyptian attacker, Villa boss Dean Smith is looking forward to the creativity Trezeguet will bring.

“We’re really excited to work with ‘Trez’. I’ve watched him a number of times,” Smith said. “He’s the type of wide player that we have been looking for who is direct, causes problems for the opposition in the final third and scores goals.”

Trezeguet has already played 41 times for Egypt, scoring six times, as he played at the Africa Cup of Nations this summer and at the 2018 World Cup last summer.

Villa already have Egyptian captain Mohamed Elmohamady in their squad and he played a big part in Trezeguet arriving.

“He’s [Elmohamady] my captain and always speaks with me about Aston Villa, saying it’s an amazing club and that I’d be happy here,” Trezeguet revealed. “I asked him a lot of questions. He will help me and believes I will help the team. It will help having him here with me and I look forward to working with him again. As for joining, I’m happy to be here at one of the biggest clubs around. I hope I can help the team to be successful – I will do my best. I’m looking forward to playing in the Premier League – it’s a dream.”

Egyptian billionaire Nassef Sawiris owns 55 percent of Villa, while the rest of the ownership group comes from the USA, and that Egyptian connection at Villa will help him settle into his new surroundings.

Villa are making plenty of sensible signings this summer and although there has been quite a churn in terms of turnover from their promotion winning squad, they haven’t been able to bring back key loan signings Axel Tuanzebe and Tammy Abraham from last season so making these additions makes sense. They have also moved on 18 players from last season as plenty of veterans and squad players are now off the wage bill.

Trezeguet joins Anwar Al Ghazi, Matt Targett, Tyrone Mings, Ezri Konza, Jota, Wesley, Kourtney Hause and Bjorn Engels as the new arrivals and he will compete with Al Ghazi, Andre Green, Jota and Jonathan Kodjia for one of the wide positions. He has scored 22 goals in 65 appearances in the Turkish Super Lig over the past two seasons and that end product will excite Smith.

Villa’s hefty additions this summer seems a little different to Fulham’s scattergun approach of signing players last summer. There is a real plan and identity to this side under Smith and Trezeguet gives them even more options in attacking areas as they aim to get the ball to new central striker Wesley and build off his flicks and hold-up play.