Aston Villa player ratings gallery: Two score 9/10 but two get 5 in 2-1 win vs Brighton

Aston Villa player ratings gallery: Two score 9/10 but two get 5 in 2-1 win vs Brighton

Aston Villa go into the World Cup break with two successive Premier League victories as they beat Brighton & Hove Albion 2-1 at the Amex Stadium on Sunday. It was a glorious comeback for Villa, who record their first away win of the entire season.

It wasn’t all glory to start with, though, as Villa had a disastrous first minute. Goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez made a sloppy pass out from the back and Douglas Luiz was not strong enough on the receiving end of it. Alexis Mac Allister tackled the ball away from him and the Brighton number 10 fired past his Argentine international teammate, finding the bottom left-hand corner in just 49 seconds.

The hosts were forced into an early change as experienced midfielder Adam Lallana was forced off through injury. Paraguayan international Julio Enciso took his place. Emery was nearly in action to make a similar call as wonderkid midfielder Jacob Ramsey went down, but the 21-year-old was able to carry on - much to the relief of the travelling supporters. Villa enjoyed a good spell of possession after Brighton’s surprise early lead and created a good opportunity in the 16th minute. Ramsey made a delightful threaded through ball to Danny Ings, who squared into the six-yard area - but it was cleared away by Pervis Estupiñan.

Just minutes later, the Villans had an even better chance as John McGinn was fouled by Lewis Dunk - a blatant penalty as he slid in from behind. Albion goalkeeper Robert Sanchez, who has never saved a Premier League penalty, got a strong hand to it but the power from Danny Ings’ effort meant it was converted from the spot. The England international’s 100th career league goal. Brighton piled on the pressure afterward in another shift in momentum. Lots of threat came from a variety of set-piece routines, and Martinez nearly handed Albion another opportunity as he found himself out of position for a corner. Mac Allister’s inswinger nearly found its way into the near post, with a deliberate effort at goal. Martinez got back to stop, in the end.

After a cagey end to the first half, it was Brighton who were largely on top at the beginning of the second, as they pressed to get a goal up. It was Villa who ended up on top score-wise, though, as Ings grabbed his second of the game to make it 2-1 during a counter attack in the 52nd minute. Emiliano Buendia had seen a headed effort rebound off the crossbar before the ball made its way to the edge of the penalty area. Luiz made up for his early mistake as the roles reversed from Brighton’s opener. The Brazilian dispossessed Mac Allister to find Ings, who got past Dunk and found the back of the net.

De Zerbi’s side put Villa under intense pressure in response and probably should’ve had their own penalty in the 71st minute. Lucas Digne kicked right through Solly March, who went down in a lot of pain. Digne didn’t even touch the ball and was incredibly fortunate to get away with it, as the Video Assistant Referee waved off Albion’s complaints. Levi Colwill had a glorious opportunity to score an equaliser for Brighton in the dying embers as he was left completely unmarked in the area. Pascal Gross’ delivery was pinpoint but the Chelsea loanee was unable to make a strong connection on a header - getting his timing all wrong.

Eight minutes were added on, making for a very tense end. But Villa defended resolutely and were able to hang on for an important win on the south coast and move up to 12th in the Premier League standings. Here are our player ratings from the game - with two players starring with a 9/10.

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