Fulham 1-2 Aston Villa: Visitors return to top four as Watkins bags brilliant brace

Seeking a return to the top four of the 2023/24 Premier League with a victory at Craven College, Unai Emery’s Aston Villa travelled to London on Saturday to face Fulham.

FUL: Leno; Robinson, Ream, Diop, Castagne; Cairney, Palhinha; Willian, Pereira, Decordova-Reid; Muniz

AVL: Martínez; Moreno, Torres, Lenglet, Cash; Ramsey, Luiz, McGinn, Tielemans, Bailey; Watkins

It took less than thirty minutes for Aston Villa to seize the lead on Saturday afternoon, as Jacob Ramsey fought to dispossess Willian before teeing up Ollie Watkins, allowing the England international to slot home the opening goal on the banks of the Thames.

He would double his personal tally shortly after play resumed for the second half, latching onto a well-worked through ball from Youri Tielemans before dispatching past Bernd Leno to give the visitors full control of this Premier League affair.

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But Fulham would be fortuitous as the match wore on, capitalising on a rare error from the Aston Villa defence – allowing Rodrigo Muniz to poke a tidy finish past the onrushing Emi Martínez.

It would be nothing more than a consolation goal for Fulham though, who did come close to restoring parity as Muniz dragged a shot wide of the post in the dying minutes.

Aston Villa return to the Premier League’s top four and now eagerly await the visit of Nottingham Forest next Saturday. Fulham’s next outing sees them travel to Old Trafford.