The Dunes Hotel Stadium
24/08/2021 7:45 pm
Referee: Martin Coy
|Archer (10, 62, 88), El Ghazi (pen 24, 45+2), Guilbert (75)|
With slow but steady improvement in our Premier League campaign, Tuesday evening’s trip to Barrow’s The Dunes Hotel Stadium ground gave Aston Villa the change to change focus and turn more youthful as head coach Dean Smith was undoubtedly going to shake up the starting XI.
And he did just that.
A much changed and very youthful side started quite brightly, but the hosts showed they weren’t going to roll over and it was quite an even game, even after Cameron Archer opened his professional account on ten minutes following a great assist by Anwar El Ghazi.
Almost 15 minutes later, having ridden one attempt to drag him down in the box, Jaden Philogene-Bidace fell at the second attempt, and El Ghazi stepped up for the penalty and made it 2-0 with a very cheeky finish.
Shortly after the restart I thought we’d given a penalty away ourselves, but the referee didn’t see it that way. Maybe I’ll need better replays, but I think we got away with one there.
The rest of the half was open and they were going for the typical physical approach but we were very comfortable really and on the stroke of the half time whistle a lovely ball in from Freddy Guilbert gave Anwar one of the easiest finishes he’ll get to make it 3-0.
With the whistle going, it seems time to ask ‘was that our good half?’.
Ultimately yes, at 3-0 it was probably inevitable we stepped off a bit, but we went flat and Barrow made better work of the running – but we weren’t in any extra danger really although Jed The Stare had to pull off a couple of good saves.
Just after the hour mark, the match quickly changed from niggly and we found our class again as a fantastic through ball from Anwar set Archer up for his brace with a fabulous finish past the keeper.
4-0 and we looked to subs to give others some experience.
With 15 remaining on the clock, we broke again extremely quickly and after good work by their keeper who won his one on one, Freddy Guilbert stepped up to absolutely rifle the ball into the back of the net.
And not long after it was 6-0 as Archer was set up for his first career hattrick by JPB, and after some great control, it was put on a plate and Archer wasn’t going to miss that.
A great night, youngsters with real promise proving it in a real game and that was far better on a performance and result front than I was expecting.
Enjoying it fellow Villans!