Aston Villa failed to address Crystal Palace’s second-half onslaught and fell to a 3-2 defeat at Selhurst Park, despite twice leading through goals from stand-in skipper John McGinn and Anwar El Ghazi.

Today we have an all-female cast in support of the campaign #HerGameToo which is raising awareness of sexist abuse in the game!

We are joined by ratings regulars – Hannah Gowen, Georgia Homer, Nicky Louise and Villa Running Club creator Dani Casey.

If you’d like to join us for a game on this super chilled platform, please drop us a message.

STARTING LINE-UP

Formation 4-2-3-1

Emi Martinez – 7

Probably Villa’s best player despite shipping three goals. Made a few great saves and wasn’t to fault for any of the goals conceded. Not much more to say! (Hannah)

Ahmed Elmohamady – 5

Note to Sky Sports – this is Aston Villa Football Club and both Elmohamady and El Ghazi are international players so show some more respect! Called upon today to replace injured Cash, this may well be his final season at the Villa and the second goal will be one he will want to forget. A decent first 70 minutes or so, at times some crosses intercepted but struggled when Zaha and some of the other Palace attack came to life in the final 20 minutes. Good to see him get some game time though. (Nicky)

Ezri Konsa – 5

I’m a big fan of Konsa but today wasn’t his day. Allowed the likes of Zaha to get inside his head and saw a rattled version of a player who is normally much more disciplined than today. Caught shirt pulling all too often. Having conceded 3 I can’t give more than 5/10 for a CB. (Dani)

Kortney Hause – 5

Hause stepped in for an injured Mings and although he didn’t do too much wrong, the backline missed its commanding figure. Two early chances were wasted as Hause headed two balls off target. He was overpowered by Benteke for their first equaliser, but not many players wouldn’t be. (Georgia)

Matt Targett -7

Villa’s most consistent player had a strong game in comparison to some of his teammates. He was not involved with the goals conceded and without him, there would’ve undoubtedly been more. He offered good crosses for players such as Ramsey, but nothing was converted. (Georgia)

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Douglas Luiz – 6

Had a big role to play in anchoring the midfield today and managed to do so very well in the first half. Was involved a lot in transitioning play. Midfield in general was lost in the second half, more so as time passed, but I can’t say that Luiz was majorly to fault for that. He continued to try and win back possession and progress the ball. Can’t give him more than a six given how much space there was in the midfield for the final 30 minutes of the game, and his conceding of free kicks. (Hannah)

John McGinn – 6

Orchestrated a dominant first half as Villa captain and opened the scoring with a calm finish from the edge of the box. A yellow card later in the game disrupted the midfield; with McGinn afraid to make tackles, the middle of the pitch became a playground for Palace. Started well, ended poorly – much like the team as a whole. (Georgia)

Jacob Ramsey – 5

Felt Ramsey had circles run round him today, and was very much a passenger. Repeatedly lost possession in the midfield and eventually subbed off. (Dani)

Bertrand Traore – 5

Traore roulette – are we going to get the Bert that dazzles and delights, or the one that plays like a Year 11 in Timbo’s and a JD bag slung around his shoulders? Yes, you guessed it. Subbed off for Jack Grealish, forcing Anwar to the right. After that, the game went south. An ‘off’ game is often met with an inspired reply so here’s hoping for a better run out in the week against Spurs. (Dani)

Anwar El Ghazi – 6

Might seem harsh for the goal scorer, and although the Dutchman bagged and produced a few other decent chances, there wasn’t enough defensive contribution from the forward to earn him a higher score. Elmo and Targett needed much more cover and at times El Ghazi seemed to drift out of the game a bit. Did score though and was one of the better contributors to the game. (Hannah)

Ollie Watkins – 6

Back from suspension with a cracking first half including an assist, great movement and created space. Poor service from the midfield in the second half. I just can’t help but feel that we could do with someone upfront in the summer to give him a hand. (Nicky)

Substitutes:

Grealish (on for Traore, 64th minute) 5

Very quiet entrance for Grealish on only his second appearance since a long-term absence. He won a few fouls on the left-wing, none of which were put to good use, and he failed to make any real impact on the game. Tried to chip in defensively but otherwise was not entirely useful. (Hannah)

Davis (on for Ramsey, 86th minute) N/A

Can’t really score Davis given his very limited time on the field. Did attempt a headed shot in the final moments of the game but did not trouble Palace whatsoever. Not sure he was the substitution that was necessary at that point in the game. (Hannah)

Wesley (on for El Ghazi, 88th minute) N/A

Again, Wesley did not have enough time on the pitch to warrant a score. In fact, it’s difficult to remember if he touched the ball at all other than winning a free kick in Palace’s half. Another strange substitution that didn’t seem to suit the game or the trajectory it was taking. (Hannah)

Subs not used:

Steer, Taylor, Engels, Nakamba, Barkley, Chukwuemeka.

Goals:

AVFC | McGinn ’17

CPFC | Benteke ’32

AVFC | El Ghazi ’34

CPFC | Zaha ’76

CPFC | Mitchell ’84


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