Burnley 1-3 Aston Villa: Cash nets first-half brace as Villa emerge victorious again

Buoyed by a five-star thrashing of Hibernian in midweek and a four-goal drubbing of Everton a week ago, Aston Villa travelled to Turf Moor on Sunday – where they’d face a Burnley side that was defeated by Manchester City on the opening day.

BUR: Trafford; Delcroix, O’Shea, Al Dakhil, Roberts; Koleosho, Berge, Cullen, Manuel; Foster, Amdouni

AVL: Olsen; Torres, Silva, Konsa; Digne, Luiz, Kamara, Cash; McGinn, Diaby; Watkins

The visitors made no hesitation as they roared into an early lead at Turf Moor, with Matty Cash providing the opener after just eight minutes. In his 100th appearance for the club, the Polish international nipped in at the far post to beat Hannes Delcroix to Ollie Watkins’ cross.

While Luca Koleosho sought to restore parity moments later with a cross into the box for Lyle Foster, the delivery was sent just over the forward’s head – and it was none other than Matty Cash that found the game’s second goal in the twentieth minute. Moussa Diaby’s cut-back pass was placed perfectly for the wing-back, who stepped inside to curl an effort into the far corner and send the travelling fans into euphoric celebrations.

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The visitors came close to recording their third goal of the afternoon just ten minutes later, as Moussa Diaby darted through the heart of the defence after being played through on goal by Douglas Luiz, but a well-timed challenge from Hannes Delcroix brought an abrupt end to the move.

There would be one final opportunity for the hosts to reduce the deficit ahead of the interval as fabulous footwork from Zeki Amdouni allowed the forward to create space for a shot from outside the area, though his curling effort sailed over the crossbar – and it was Villa that headed into half-time with a comfortable two-goal lead.

But just moments after the restart, the hosts found themselves back in contention as Lyle Foster got the better of Pau Torres, catapulting an effort into the back of the net to truly spark life into the home crowd at Turf Moor.

Having registered the assist for Burnley’s first goal, Jóhann Guðmundsson looked to create another opportunity for Vincent Kompany’s side just before the hour mark. Robin Olsen was forced into action, as the Icelandic international’s cross was turned towards goal by Hannes Delcroix.

Yet just as Burnley showed signs of being able to rescue a point from this encounter, Moussa Diaby put the tie to bed in the 61st minute. John McGinn’s pass sent Lucas Digne free on the left flank, with the Frenchman then cutting back for his compatriot swept a stunning strike into the far corner.

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It should have been four soon after, but for a fine save from James Trafford. A cross into the box from Moussa Diaby was sent straight into the feet of Ollie Watkins, but the Englishman forced the young shotstopper into action from six yards out. Nicolò Zaniolo also looked to create chances for Villa straight from the bench, opting to take on the shot himself rather than squaring for Ollie Watkins.

As Michael Salisbury’s final whistle rang around Turf Moor, it was Aston Villa that would be celebrating another three points to add to their tally. Some will forecast a tumultuous season for Burnley given they remain pointless in the league thus far – but they have played just twice, against the reigning European Champions and a much-improved Villa outfit.