Goals aplenty as Aston Villa, Brentford settle for entertaining draw

For the first time ever, the English Premier League brought its hugely-popular brand to the United States for a preseason tournament. Dubbed the Summer Series, the event featured six clubs — Aston Villa, Brentford, Brighton, Chelsea, Fulham and Newcastle — participating in a series of friendly exhibitions up and down the east coast prior to the start of the Premier League’s 2023-24 campaign.

The final showcase of this inaugural event was a doubleheader at FedEx Field, with Aston Villa against Brentford and Chelsea against Fulham. The most exciting club in this competition was arguably Aston Villa, led by manager Unai Emery. While he’s been at the helm for less than a year, his impact has been significant.

Last October, Steven Gerrard was relieved of his managerial duties after just 11 underwhelming matches as Aston Villa hovered near the relegation zone in 17th place. Moving on from Gerrard was a massive success, as Villa picked up 49 points in Emery’s 25 games as manager. Amazingly, Villa finished in seventh place last season and will return to European competition for the first time in 13 years after earning a spot in the Europa Conference League.

Emery has won the Europa League four times during his distinguished career, but that’s a challenge for another day. Before then, the Villains needed to navigate a tricky fixture with an always feisty Bees squad. During his time with Brentford, manager Thomas Frank has consistently found ways to get results against clubs with bigger budgets and more talent. So it shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that Brentford jumped out to a 2-0 lead against Villa, courtesy of Bryan Mbeumo‚Äôs early penalty kick and a long-range strike from Josh Dasilva.

Those two quick goals clearly sparked something in Aston Villa, who woke up from their slumber and immediately showed an offensive firepower that should worry opposing clubs. When Villa are on the front foot, attacking and counter attacking with pace, they are a sight to behold. Ezri Konsa, Moussa Diaby and Matty Cash scored within a 10-minute span to give Villa a 3-2 lead at halftime. Brentford’s Shandon Baptiste scored the only goal of the second half as a wildly-entertaining affair ended in a 3-3 draw.

Leave a Reply

HomerMcFanboy background image