Aston Villa Football Academy 1st match report – vs Derby County FC (Cup) 16/12/20
Wednesday 16 December 2020
The 1st team travelled away to Derby County for today’s cup game, a squad of 13 ready to continue the unbeaten run they found themselves on. Horrendous conditions with a strong gale blowing and some awful sideward rain coming down. A strong squad was prepared, which welcomed back Hariz Siraji, Josh Kniveton and Demico Burton back into the team after great performances with the 2nd team in their win against Wolves the previous week. We also welcomed back to the substitutes bench Lewis Smith from injury and Sudey’s Moalim after his great performance last week also with the 2nd team where he got himself 2 goals.
Aston Manor started off full of nerves against a Derby side with a clear tactic to play an extremely high defensive line, which frustrated the Aston Manor attacking formation. Within the first 5 minutes, Hariz Siraji was a clear target for the away side to try and penetrate the Derby defence. He was causing all sorts of problems for the Derby right back, who looked out of his depth. The Derby tactic was paying off to their credit and the high line was finding the Aston Manor side getting caught offside, 11 times in total during the first half.
It only took 8 minutes for Aston Manor to get their first shot on target, a tricky run by Demico from the left, but the shot failed to trouble the Derby keeper.
The possession, shots and domination continued throughout the first half for Aston Manor. Chances for striker Corey and midfielders Hariz, Holy, Kieran and Josh were all attempted, but some good goalkeeping from the Derby number 1, who was very vocal to his team, prevented Derby from going behind in the first half. The Derby high line tactic was paying off, but it felt it was only a matter of time before the risky set up was to concede.
A frustrating first half for Aston Manor, that was broken down with lots of offsides and changes in possession due to both teams unable to get the ball moved around the pitch. The home team were trying to break down the high possession by conceding lots of fouls, a total of 8 in the first half and also catching the away team offside. Derby were then happy to hit the ball long, causing no problems for the Aston Manor defence. We felt if a goal was scored the flood gates would open up for many more.
Half Time 0-0
The second half started with 2 substitutions from Aston Manor, left midfielder Hariz Siraji came off to be replaced by Lewis Smith and Sudey’s Moalim came on for striker Corey Leslie. Holy moved up top, Lewis on the right and Sudey’s left of midfield.
The second half started much like the first, but with an increased boost in confidence from the Aston Manor side, who were well up for this second half encounter after losing to the same side last year, 1-0 after dominating the game. The year 13’s remembered this well and did not want a repeat outcome. Lots of possession and the majority of the time was going to be spent deep in the home team’s half.
Aston Villa coach Nige did some great work on addressing the high defensive line and ways we could combat this in the second half. Too many straight balls played through the Derby back line along with straight runs from our attacking players was key on the agenda during the half time team talk.
This paid off instantly, a great passage of play saw Demico hold his angled run and get played through the Derby defence. The pacey left back was through on goal in a wide left position, a wicked, fast paced ball put in around the penalty spot just missed out on anyone getting on the end of it.
A very positive start to the second half! Tricky midfielder this time with Sudey’s who was brimming with confidence after 2 goals last week was causing all sorts of problems for Derby, some great link up play with left back Demico saw a great one-two and cross by Sudey’s into the box. The wicked cross bounced up and came to midfielder Lewis that shot on target, brilliantly palmed away by the goalkeeper and cleared, only to reach Kieran on the edge of the box, a control and shot from 20 yards forced another good save from the Derby number 1.
Kieran was up again for Aston Manor, he was put through, a great timed pass, 1 on 1 with the keeper and another fantastic save forcing the ball wide left. Straight after it was Demico again put through, another great run saw him 1 on 1 with the keeper, only a shot hit into the side netting kept the score at 0-0.
The 59th minute came and so did the breakthrough Aston Manor were looking for, substitute Lewis Smith picked the ball up outside the box and a one touch and shot, deflected off the goalkeeper into the bottom left of the goal. This was met with an ecstatic celebration. Relief all round. Aston Villa 1 Derby 0.
It didn’t take long for the goals to keep coming. Holy was played through on the left-hand side in the 67 minute, he pulled a cross back towards the penalty spot, a great late run by midfielder Sudey’s found himself on the end of it. A first-time finish, 2-0 Aston Villa, a great celebration in front of the camera (please check out our Aston Manor YouTube page for game footage).
Not long after Sudey’s got his second goal of the game and 4th goal in 2 games. A well-timed run from the left caught the Derby defence napping. A driving run and powerful shot could only be palmed into the goal by the Derby keeper. Aston Villa 3 Derby 0 and cruising to victory!
Close to the end of the game, victory was secured a quick thinking freekick from deep within the Aston Manor backline played in left winger Sudey’s whose timely ball into the penalty area found midfielder Josh Kniveton, who cheekily lobbed the ball over the Derby goalkeeper. A great way to finish off a brilliant second half performance.
Full Time Derby 0 Aston Villa 4
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