Aston Villa completed their pre-season fixtures with a hard-fought 3-1 win in Germany against top-three Bundesliga side RB Leipzig, a club who will be competing in the Champions League in the coming season.
Dean Smith fielded a strong side, which in truth looked like the team which might start next week at Tottenham.
Villa were put under pressure for large parts of the game but enjoyed some strong spells themselves as they acquitted themselves very well against very strong opposition. As usual, the discussion in the match thread was colourful and impassioned.
New forum member SouthMark45 shares his thoughts on the individual performances on display this afternoon.
Well…. that was a good test against a side that finished 3rd in the Bundesliga last season, so a solid test.
Heaton showed why we paid £8m for him – absolute quality and will certainly justify that figure as the season goes on.
Targett looked a bit lost at times today. Not sure his linkup play with El Ghazi was as good as the other side of the pitch, but early days yet… needs to do more for me to justify his price tag.
Mings quality again as he’s been all pre-season; the partnership with Engels looks solid.
Engels had another solid game. Really composed on the ball and I think the partnership with Mings will develop as the season goes on.
Guilbert for me was really good again today. He’s definitely a threat going forward… cannot see Elmo getting his RB spot back.
Jota has been one of the best players for me in pre-season and today; an absolute gift at £4m!
Hourihane had a good game today – wasn’t wasteful with his passing, made a critical tackle and took one for the team to get a yellow card when they were about to break. [Not to mention his two superb free-kick goals – Ed.]
McGinn was always chasing and getting stuck in but wasn’t as menacing going forward today as I would have expected.
Grealish made some nice passes but didn’t do enough creatively today for me.
El Ghazi didn’t do a lot for me today and I may get shot down for this, but he hasn’t impressed me too much so far when you consider Jota’s influence on the games.
Wesley – some nice hold-up play but needs to be more of a nuisance up front and find those gaps in between the defence. But then again, he didn’t get too much service either.
Subs: thought Kodjia looked good when he came on and I would like to see him get a shot in the Premier League because if he can rediscover the form he had before the injury, he will bag us a few goals for sure.
Trezeguet showed nice vision to pick out McGinn; would like to see him start at Tottenham.
All in all, very pleasing and I’m excited for the season kick-off!
Thanks for that SouthMark. I totally agree – a highly encouraging pre-season rounded off nicely against a strong Leipzig outfit. It looks like things are falling nicely into place…