Aston Villa 0-0 West Ham: Hammers survive Arthur Masuaku red card
Report and highlights as Hammers climb up to eighth in the Premier League with battling point at Villa Park
Last Updated: 17/09/19 11:45am
West Ham survived the second-half dismissal of Arthur Masuaku to extend their unbeaten run in the Premier League to three games with a 0-0 draw at Aston Villa on Monday Night Football.
The Hammers had to navigate the final 23 minutes with a man down after referee Mike Dean issued Masuaku with a second yellow for a challenge on Ahmed Elmohamady which did not appear to make contact with the Villa defender.
Villa may well have been reduced to 10 or even nine men when Anwar El Ghazi threw his head into the face of defender Tyrone Mings in the flashpoint of the first half.
But Dean Smith's side failed to take advantage of that reprieve and the numerical advantage as the Hammers battled their way to a point that moves them up to eighth and sees Villa climb out of the relegation zone.
Aston Villa: Heaton (7), Guilbert (6), Engels (6), Mings (7), Taylor (6), Nakamba (7), Grealish (7), Jota (6), McGinn (7), El Ghazi (6), Wesley (5).
Subs: Elmohamady (5), Luiz (n/a), Davis (n/a).
West Ham: Fabianski (7), Fredericks (6), Diop (7), Ogbonna (6), Masuaku (5), Rice (7), Noble (6), Yarmolenko (6), Lanzini (6), Anderson (6), Haller (7).
Subs: Zabaleta (6), Fornals (6), Balbuena (n/a).
Man of the Match: Declan Rice.
No ifs and no headbutts: Villa and West Ham fail to spark
Villa's bid to improve their dismal record of just one win in 16 Premier League games on a Monday nearly got off to the perfect start when Jack Grealish drove into West Ham territory and picked out Wesley with a peach of a cross to the near post, but the hosts' record signing headed over on 13 minutes when it looked easier to score.
It was then the turn of Sebastien Haller to go close as the Hammers' top scorer stole a march on Mings to get on the end of Felipe Anderson's cross from the left, but he could only steer a header wide.
The increased strain on the Villa defence caused tempers to flare on 35 minutes when Mings and El Ghazi were involved in a heated exchange that saw the latter push his head into his team-mate's face.
Both players survived a VAR review and, three minutes later, Mark Noble was fortunate not shown a second yellow by referee Dean after going to ground without contact in search of a penalty.
Villa nearly drew a line under an incident-packed first half with the opening goal as El Ghazi rolled the ball into the path of John McGinn, but his crisp drive from the edge of the area drew a fine save from Lukasz Fabianski.
McGinn was at it again early in the second half, fizzing a low drive inches wide of Fabianski's left-hand post and Declan Rice saw a fierce drive blocked as both sides saw an opportunity to take the game.
And Villa's chances received a boost on 67 minutes when Masuaku was penalised for a trip on Elmohamady and given his marching orders after committing a second bookable offence, though replays showed contact was minimal.
But the sending off had the opposite effect, invigorating West Ham as they produced a spirited display with 10 men in a pulsating finale.
Grealish had the chance to win it with two minutes remaining but, at full stretch, he was unable to steer a volley on target from seven yards while West Ham could have been handed the opportunity to win themselves had Mings' barge on Ryan Fredericks in the area been punished.
What the managers said
Aston Villa manager Dean Smith told Sky Sports: "I am disappointed a little bit but also a little satisfied with how we played. West Ham have four forward players who are very good, and I felt we restricted them very well.
"I am disappointed when they went down to 10 men we didn't use the extra man well enough. Players got sloppy, took too many touches on the ball. I think we did get a little too desperate to be honest, the players wanted to do it on their own. It can be tough, but it shouldn't be."
West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini said: "We had a very good performance. We tried to win from the first minute of the game until the last minute.
"When we had 10 men, we continued to try to have the option with the ball, not just to defend. The important thing is that it didn't seem like we had 10 players. I don't know if [the red card] was unlucky or innocent. But I'm happy because if you are away and cannot win don't lose it."
Grealish defuses El Ghazi-Mings incident
Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish told Sky Sports: "It's all handbags. When you're out there, heat of the moment. As soon as we got into half-time, it was all put to bed. Shake hands. We all said that can't be happening out on the pitch."
'It feels like a loss'
Grealish added: "I've just been back in the changing room and all the lads are devastated. It feels a bit like a loss, especially when they went down to 10 men. Even in the first half, I think we had the better chances. Everyone tries to do a bit too much. I think when they went down to 10 men we got worse. I gave away too many sloppy passes. We tried to force things."
Man of the Match - Declan Rice
A mature performance in West Ham's midfield that displayed the continued development of his all-round game and belied his 20 year age. Helped control the game after Masuaku's red card and contributed both in defence and attack with a display of all-round prowess.
- Only in 1997-98 (3) did Aston Villa accrue fewer points after the opening five games of a Premier League campaign than they have managed this season (4).
- Mike Dean racked up his 102nd red card in the Premier League, 35 more than any other referee has awarded in the competition (Phil Dowd, 67).
- Since the start of last season, Aston Villa's Jack Grealish has been fouled 179 times in league football (including play-offs), 49 more than any other player in the top four tiers.
West Ham host Manchester United live on Renault Super Sunday from 1pm on Sky Sports Premier League - kick-off is at 2pm. Villa travel to Arsenal on the same day with kick-off at 4.30pm.