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Season 2023-24
Aston Villa (a) Premier League


Tuesday 30th January 2024, 8.15pm
Live on TNT Sports

Villa Park

Conditions: Dazzling

Programme: £3.50


Aston Villa



1 - 3




32 mins Anthony Gordon's attempt to replicate his strike at home to Manchester City was thwarted when the goalbound shot deflected off Ezri Konsa for a corner. Kieran Tripper's flag kick from the right dropped towards the front of the six yard box, just over the head of Clement Lenglet.

Making a run into the six yard box was Fabian Schar, who was blocked initially by Douglas Luiz but kept pushing forward and was left alone to arrive on the edge of the six yard box and coolly slot home a low right footed shot at the Holte End.

36 mins Facing his own goal, Sven Botman eased Ollie Watkins off the ball and pushed it towards Schar, who laid it off to Bruno Guimaraes. A simple pass to Trippier in the right back position saw him move it on to Jacob Murphy on the halfway line and he released Sean Longstaff into space.

Murphy burst through to continue the attack and his low pull back from the right hand byline was destined for Gordon before Matty Cash intervened at the expense of a corner kick.

Again Trippier sent over a corner from the United right into a similar spot as before. This time, Alex Moreno headed the ball away from goal, falling into the path of Gordon outside the box. His first-time volley reared up off Lenglet and bounced off the crossbar with Emiliano Martinez beaten.

Time stood still as the ball fell to ground, Fabian Schar having turned to follow the path of Gordon's shot and left with the simple task of guiding the ball under the goalkeeper from close range.

Half time: Villans 0 Magpies 2

52 mins A combination of Lewis Miley and Miguel Almiron won the ball back near to the halfway line on the United left and Gordon took up the charge over halfway. Reaching the left hand side of the Villa area, he found Miggy on the overlap and the Paraguayan sent over a low cross before Konsa could intervene.

Arriving towards the back post was Jacob Murphy, who shot first time with his right foot. The target looked like an open goal but rather than flying into the net, Murphy's effort bounced off his left knee and off the backside of Alex Moreno then into the net. Like Bellamy's third at Feyenoord, the shot wasn't going in until the home player intervened. 

As Moreno lay off the field receiving treatment after impaling himself on the post, Murphy dragged Almiron towards the celebrating Newcastle fans to share the adulation.

71 mins A ball played over the top to Leon Bailey on the Villa right saw the substitute steam past Burn and play a low pass across the six yard box to Ollie Watkins, who got between Botman and Schar to sweep the ball past Martin Dubravka. 3-1

Full time: Villans 1 Magpies 3

We Said

Eddie Howe said:

"It’s sort of mixed emotions for me because I look at that team tonight and the way we played and I think it’s an elite team that is capable of achieving great things.

"The mixed emotions part is that we haven’t seen that for a number of weeks and it’s been a really challenging period for us.

"A number of injuries, the team has looked disjointed. Today we looked much more like ourselves.

"We had players that had been injured come back and had a bit of game time now and I think that’s showing in their performances.

"When you’re in my shoes and you’re coaching and managing the team, you want to see a team that is linked to how you want them to play.

"Most importantly is the spirit and determination to do well and execute our best level. And I think that has been there, I just think the frustration has been that we’ve just looked a little bit off colour. 

"We haven’t looked fluent for reasons that sometimes have been beyond the players’ control, but today I saw the identity that we were looking for. 

"We know every game is so tough but of course we hope to use this as a springboard to get back our very best levels consistently."

They Said


Unai Emery:

"I’m a little bit frustrated and a little bit disappointed but very proud of the way we did The loss has to come one day and Newcastle deserved it overall. In the first 60 minutes they were better than us; strong in set pieces and we conceded two goals.

“We weren’t controlling the game like we planned and we were doing before in other matches. The consequence at the end was the lost.

"I’m very proud for our supporters and very proud of the players of the way we did. It’s finished (the unbeaten PL home run) because we lost after a very long time being successful here.

“We’re going to work again, to react quickly and to be strong again with our supporters here.

"Always when you are losing it’s a little bit frustrating for the players and supporters, but we have to try to get the perspective we have now with everything we were doing.

"We have to accept this loss today because Newcastle played very well and they’re a team with good players, with good coaches and they were very successful last year. This year they’ve had some problems but they’ve shown that they are going to push for a top seven position.

“We have to accept it and push to try to keep our position and performances like we did.”


United registered a first top-flight victory at Villa Park since a 2-1 win in September 2013 - ending a barren run of six games there consisting of successive scoreless draws then a quartet of defeats.

Fabian Schar's opener ended a 589 minute wait for a Newcastle goal at Villa Park since Yoan Gouffran scored in that 2013 visit.

(NB: omitted from both of the above statistics is the 1-1 draw here in the 2016/17 Championship season, when our goal was actually an own goal registered by Tommy Elphick).

The defender hit his eleventh and twelfth PL goals and the first in that competition since a home win over Nottingham Forest in August 2022. Schar has three in league and cup game this season, the other at home to PSG in the Champions League. His most prolific season as a Magpie was 2018/19 with four goals. His career high remains bagging eight for Basel in 2012/13,

Twelve PL goals puts Schar one ahead of an illustrious list of ex-Magpies with eleven: Dwight Gayle, Keith Gillespie, Yoan Gouffran, Salomon Rondon, Jonjo Shelvey, Moussa Sissoko, Steve Watson and Georginio Wijnaldum. 

He joins Ruel Fox, Kevin Nolan, Allan Saint-Maximin and Steven Taylor on a dozen, also moving to within one goal of matching the PL totals of both Hatem Ben Arfa and colleague Joe Willock. 

Making it to 13 PL strikes also would confirm Fabian as our most prolific defender in that competition ahead of Tayls but Fabian (147 games) has made it to 12 quicker than Steven (163 games).

United ended a sequence of four successive PL defeats since defeating Fulham at SJP in December and also halted a run of five consecutive away losses since a 2-2 draw at Wolves last October.

Following the success at Sheffield United, a second PL away win of the season matches our previous seasonal low in that competition, set in 2003/04, 2008/09, 2012/13 and 2015/16.

Unai Emery's side were unbeaten in all ten PL home games this season, winning nine and drawing one before tonight. They hadn't lost at Villa Park in the PL since February 18th 2023 when Arsenal triumphed 4-2 - a run of 17 games. 

Newcastle completed a first PL double of the season, winning by an aggregate 8-2. They last took six points off the Villans in 2013/14 - the last double by either side in this fixture until tonight.

The Magpies recorded their 75th competitive victory in all competitions over Villa, the most against any team and two more than versus Manchester City. Scoring 268 goals in all competitions against them is also our highest tally, one more than City (267) and two more than Everton (266).

United's 547th PL away game saw them collect their 139th victory and a ninth at Villa Park. The Villans remain our third favourite PL opponent on the road after West Ham and Spurs, where we have each won on 11 occasions.

New faces on the bench this season were midfield duo Joe White (clad in squad number 40) and Travis Hernes (wearing squad number 90).  

21 year-old Cumbrian White has returned from loan at Crewe Alexandra and is yet to make a senior competitive debut for Newcastle. He was an unused PL substitute previously, for the 1-4 defeat at Manchester United in September 2021. 18 year-old Norwegian Hernes signed from Shrewsbury Town last September. This was his first experience of PL bench duty, having appeared on the subs bench at Fulham for last Saturday's FA Cup victory, when White was cup-tied.

Toon @ Villa Park - PL era:

2023/24 won 3-1 Schar 2, og(Moreno)
2022/23 lost 0-3
lost 0-2
2020/21 lost 0-2
2019/20 lost 0-2
2016/17 drew 1-1 og(Elphick) (Ch)
2015/16 drew 0-0
2014/15 drew 0-0
2013/14 won 2-1 Ben Arfa, Gouffran
2012/13 won 2-1 Cisse, Cabaye
2011/12 drew 1-1 Best
2010/11 lost 0-1
2008/09 lost 0-1
2007/08 lost 1-4 Owen
2006/07 lost 0-2
2005/06 won 2-1 Ameobi, N'Zogbia
2004/05 lost 2-4 Kluivert, O'Brien
2003/04 drew 0-0
2002/03 won 1-0 Shearer
2001/02 drew 1-1 Shearer
2000/01 drew 1-1 Solano
2000/01 lost 1-0 (FAC)
1999/00 won 1-0 Ferguson
1998/99 lost 0-1
1997/98 won 1-0 Batty
1996/97 drew 2-2 Shearer, Clark
1995/96 drew 1-1 Ferdinand
1994/95 won 2-0 Lee, Cole
1993/94 won 2-0 Allen (pen), Cole

Full record against Villa:
  P W D L F A
SJP 83 52 17 14 176 93
VP 83 21 21 41 84 147
League 166 73 38 55 260 240
SJP(FA) 2 1 1 0 5 3
PB/VP/W/CP 5 1 0 4 3 15
SJP(LC) 0 0 0 0 0 0
VP 0 0 0 0 0 0
Cup 7 2 1 4 8 18
Tot 173 75 39 59 268 258



Schar: I got two babe!


Newcastle ended their winless league run in style at Villa Park on Tuesday, blowing away the hosts in a devastating opening hour before resisting an inevitable comeback to deservedly claim victory. 

What had threatened to be a dry January - at least in terms of Premier League points - ended with Eddie Howe's side turning the clock back to last year's energetic and potent brand of football.  

The early signs were positive as the black and whites quickly found a good tempo and set about trying to expose the space in behind the home side - a reversal of our 0-3 loss here in April when Villa hit the goal frame within the first minute of play.

Fabian Schar
's opener came from a 32nd minute corner and within five minutes he had another after another flag kick - reacting first when Anthony Gordon's shot was deflected against the goal frame.  

That unexpected two goal interval lead was made even more remarkable seven minutes after the break when substitute Miggy Almiron's left wing centre was met beyond the back post by Jacob Murphy, who somehow forced the ball home via Moreno to make it 3-0.

Having set tongues wagging when sitting out Saturday's FA Cup win at Fulham due to illness amid claims of a possible move to Saudi Arabia, the Paraguayan had joined the action before half time tonight after yet another groin-related problem left Alexander Isak unable to continue.

Although Schar had made an invaluable goal line clearance minutes earlier,
Villa's revival came following a treble change that saw Leon Bailey (deemed not fit enough to start) arrive on the right. 

He instantly started to stretch play on that flank, waking up the slumbering home support in the process as United surrendered the initiative for the first time in the contest. 

Dan Burn struggling to shadow him, the Jamaican set up Ollie Watkins to get one back in the 71st minute and reach a half century of Premier League goals. His 51st then looked to have arrived just three minutes later, before an offside halted the celebrations.

The threat was evident though; Howe's response to shore up the left hand side
with the introduction of Tino Livramento at full back as Burn moved inside. That quickly nullified the Villa threat and had a calming influence on and off the field, as well as propelling further home fans to the exits. 

Further Newcastle goals could even have followed, including what would have been an improbable and unprecedented hat-trick for Schar, something no Newcastle defender has achieved in the PL. 

It was another corner that caused Villa problems; Fabian looking a certain scorer from the deceptive angle of the away end only for his shot to flick off Lenglet as he leapt in the way and go wide.  

Sean Longstaff should
have wrapped things up in the final minute of the 90 after another lung-busting run from Almiron on the left wing, but nine minutes of added time passed by with little threat to Dubravka's goal.

he gleeful travelling support saluted their heroes after full time; witnessing a welcome reminder of the relentless pressing, goal threat and intensity that had become our hallmark. To have done that here, with this team and without Joelinton is a genuine achievement: there were noteworthy performances across the field, ranging from a responsible Bruno display to Botman looking imperious and a revitalised Gordon, in addition to Schar's pivotal contributions at both ends.   

Pleasurable though the FA Cup progress has been, this felt like a turning point in a
league season that had threatened to tail off. Isak (and Wilson) aside, the injuries are becoming less overbearing and the return of players plus a less arduous schedule quite literally gives us breathing space. 

That also extends to non-matchdays, increasing recovery times and giving scope for things to be worked out on the training ground and in the video room. We've scored four goals following corner kicks in as many days - that sort of set piece return used to take us nearer four years.

The three points took us up three places to seventh in the table, jumping over Brighton, Manchester United and Chelsea
and that list of memorable matches this season gained another entry; another of those periodic reminders why the never-ending tour continues, just to witness nights like this.





Page last updated 12 February, 2024