Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 25 October 2020

Trezeguet 8, Pepe Reina 7; Christian Benteke 6: Aston Villa v Crystal Palace player ratings

Vital 2-0 victory keeps alive Villa hopes of Premier League survival

Aston Villa boosted their bid for Premier League survival on Sunday with a vital 2-0 victory against Crystal Palace.

Dean Smith's side kicked off at Villa Park languishing seven points from safety, but Egypt winger Trezeguet scored twice to keep them in with a chance of avoiding relegation.

Villa's first win in 11 league games lifted them into 18th place, within four points of fourth-from-bottom Watford with three games left.

Second-bottom Bournemouth will go one point above Villa if they beat Leicester later on Sunday.

Villa face Everton, Arsenal and West Ham in their last three matches as they battle to avoid an immediate return to the Championship.

Smith's men got an early stroke of luck when Palace defender Mamadou Sakho had a goal ruled out by VAR.

Conor Hourihane's free-kick from the left evaded everyone and Trezeguet came in at the back post to side-foot beyond Vicente Guaita in first-half injury time.

Villa got their crucial second goal in the 58th minute. Hourihane nodded the ball forward after John McGinn's cross was only half cleared and Trezeguet was on hand to slot home.

Palace striker Christian Benteke was sent off for violent conduct after the final whistle.

Updated: July 12, 2020 08:01 PM

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