Tag Archives: weimann

Andreas Weimann Aston Villa contract talks open

Aston Villa open contract talks with promising young striker Weimann

By
John Curtis, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

10:19 GMT, 26 January 2013

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UPDATED:

10:19 GMT, 26 January 2013

Contract talks: Weimann (right)

Contract talks: Weimann (right)

Aston Villa have held initial discussions with striker Andreas Weimann over a new contract.

Weimann has 18 months left of his current deal and Villa are hoping to secure the long-term future of the Austria international.

The 21-year-old broke into the first team last season and scored a vital injury-time winner against Fulham as the midlands club stayed up by only two points.

But it is during the current campaign that he has made a sustained impact and is their second top scorer with nine goals.

Weimann has formed a productive partnership with 11-goal Christian Benteke and the duo have kept record signing Darren Bent out of the side for lengthy periods.

Weimann's form has been one of the few highlights in a dismal season in which Villa are involved in another relegation fight and suffered a double cup exit to lower-league Bradford and Millwall.

His tally includes a double in the 3-2 defeat against Manchester United and another in the 3-1 win at Liverpool.

Impact: Weimann has been a standout performer for Villa this year

Impact: Weimann has been a standout performer for Villa this year

Villa boss Paul Lambert recently described Weimann as a 'natural finisher.'

He said: 'The way Andreas conducts himself on the pitch and in training is excellent.

'He has been really on top of his game and taken his chance in the first team.'

Weimann joined Villa as a 16-year-old from Rapid Vienna and had two spells on loan at Watford before before signing a new three-year deal with his parent club in August 2011.

He won his first senior cap for his country against Kazakhstan in October.

Bradford v Aston Villa live

CAPITAL ONE CUP LIVE: Bradford v Aston Villa – as it happens from the Coral Windows Stadium

By
Dan Ripley

PUBLISHED:

04:00 GMT, 8 January 2013

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UPDATED:

19:07 GMT, 8 January 2013

Follow Sportsmail's coverage of the Capital One Cup as Bradford host Aston Villa in the first leg of their semi-final at the Coral Windows Stadium. The League Two side will fancy their chances having already knocked out Premier League opposition in Wigan and Arsenal, while Paul Lambert's team have struggled in the top flight this term. Send me your thoughts on the action at [email protected] or contact me on Twitter @Ripinho.

Bradford v Aston Villa (7.45pm)

Click here for the live goals as they go in

Bradford starting XI: Darby, Hanson, Duke, Atkinson, McHugh, Jones, Hines, Wells, McArdle, Doyle, Good.

Aston Villa starting XI: Given, Clark, Bennett, Baker, Lowton, Bannan, Delph, Weimann, N’Zogbia, Agbonlahor, Benteke.

All the latest from League Two

19.09: From OptaJoe:

3 – Bradford are aiming to become the first fourth tier side in history to knock out three top-flight sides from the same League Cup. Target

19.06: Bradford starting XI:

Darby, Hanson, Duke, Atkinson, McHugh, Jones, Hines, Wells, McArdle, Doyle, Good.

19.03: Aston Villa starting XI:

Given, Clark, Bennett, Baker, Lowton, Bannan, Delph, Weimann, N’Zogbia, Agbonlahor, Benteke.

19.00: So who is backing Bradford to eliminate a Premier League team for the third round in a row

Arsenal and Wigan have already paid the penalty (a nice puntastic way to start the evening) but surely Aston Villa won't fall into the same trap in this League Cup semi-final.

From what I've seen in this season's Capital One Cup though, I'm not ruling out anything. Team news coming right up.

Hotshot: Christian Benteke will try to help Aston Villa avoid an upset at Bradford in the League Cup semi-final

Hotshot: Christian Benteke will try to help Aston Villa avoid an upset at Bradford in the League Cup semi-final

Aston Villa 2 Ipswich 1: Weimann saves the day as Villans come from behind

Aston Villa 2 Ipswich 1: Bent makes a big difference and puts his case to Lambert

By
Myles Hodgson

PUBLISHED:

16:54 GMT, 5 January 2013

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UPDATED:

23:16 GMT, 5 January 2013

Darren Bent presented a strong case for further inclusion in Aston Villa's first-team squad after sparking a comeback that helped to secure the club's first home win since November.

The England striker has fallen out of favour with manager Paul Lambert following the arrival of Christian Benteke, who has already contributed nine goals in his first season in English football.

A recent hamstring injury has further restricted Bent's opportunities but, given a rare start, he played a crucial role in ensuring Villa progressed to the fourth round.

Magic of the cup: Aston Villa's Darren Bent with the club mascot

Magic of the Cup: Aston Villa's Darren Bent with the club mascot

MATCH FACTS

Aston Villa: Given, Lichaj, Clark, Baker, Bennett, Albrighton (Weimann 43), Bannan, Delph, N'Zogbia (Ireland 70), Bowery (Agbonlahor 62), Bent. Subs not used: Guzan, Benteke, Stevens, Carruthers.

Scorers: Bent 46, Weimann 83.

Ipswich: Loach, Hewitt, Kisnorbo, Smith, Cresswell, Martin, Reo-Coker, Hyam, Emmanuel-Thomas (McGoldrick 60), Chopra (Mclean 74), Murphy (Edwards 70). Subs not used: Lee-Barrett, Chambers, N'Daw, Whight.

Yellow cards: Kisnorbo, Hyam.

Scorer Chopra 31.

Attendance: 24,854.

Referee: Jon Moss.

His clinical finish from Charles
N'Zogbia's pass cancelled out Michael Chopra's opening goal before
Andreas Weimann scored a late winner to claim Villa's first home victory
since beating Reading on November 27.

'That was Darren Bent down to a T. I thought his game was very, very good,' said Lambert.

'His whole work ethic and the way he
played was good, his finishing was top class and I thought his whole
general game was really good, considering he only really trained with us
for the first time yesterday, so it was a big effort from him.'

Bent was one of seven changes to
Villa's starting line-up as Lambert rested players ahead of Tuesday's
Capital One Cup semi-final first leg at Bradford and next Saturday's
crucial home game against relegation rivals Southampton.

Bent provided enough evidence to suggest he has unfinished business with Villa.

In with a shout: Michael Chopra of Ipswich celebrates the opening goal

In with a shout: Michael Chopra of Ipswich celebrates the opening goal

He provided the two chances during a
scrappy first half – whipping a cross past Jordan Bowery and then
heading his strike partner clear, only for the low shot to be saved by
goalkeeper Scott Loach.

That 30th-minute save proved pivotal, with Ipswich striker Chopra breaking to turn defender Nathan Baker.

out of reach: Ipswich keeper Scott Loach can't reach Andreas Weimann's strike for Aston Villa

out of reach: Ipswich keeper Scott Loach can't reach Andreas Weimann's strike for Aston Villa

What a relief: Aston Villa keeper Shay Given celebrates his side's winner

What a relief: Aston Villa keeper Shay Given celebrates his side's winner

His low shot was bundled into the net
off Eric Lichaj's legs. But Bent equalised in the first minute after
the restart as N'Zogbia threaded the pass through.

'The goal after half-time changed
the game,' said Ipswich boss Mick McCarthy. 'We handled them in the
first half but Bent's goal changed things.'

The equaliser gave Villa fresh
impetus and Weimann, brought on before half-time after Mark Albrighton
suffered a foot injury, continued his rich vein of scoring form with his
seventh of the season.

Oh dear: Bolton players celebrate Eric Lichaj's own goal

Oh dear: Bolton players celebrate Eric Lichaj's own goal

Aston Villa 0 Wigan 3 – match report

Aston Villa 0 Wigan 3: Lambert's hapless youngsters wiped out yet again by rampant Latics

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UPDATED:

17:25 GMT, 29 December 2012

Crisis club Aston Villa alarmingly dropped deeper into a Premier League relegation battle with another abject performance against Wigan.

The visitors, meanwhile, moved out of the bottom three with a conclusive victory to record their first win in seven matches which highlighted Villa's dramatic shortcomings.

Villa, watched by club owner Randy Lerner, never recovered from a disastrous start when Ivan Ramis gave the Latics a morale-boosting lead after only three minutes.

Opener: Ivan Ramis (right) celebrates his goal which got proceedings underway

Opener: Ivan Ramis (right) celebrates his goal which got proceedings underway

It's raining goals: But sadly for Paul Lambert they're all going against his hapless Villa side

It's raining goals: But sadly for Paul Lambert they're all going against his hapless Villa side

MATCH FACTS

Aston Villa: Guzan, Herd, Clark, Lichaj (Albrighton 64), Lowton, Ireland (El Ahmadi 63), Holman (Bowery 63), Bannan, Bennett, Weimann, Benteke.

Subs not used: Given, Westwood, Stevens, Carruthers.

Booked: Bannan, Lowton, Weimann.

Wigan: Al Habsi, Ramis, Caldwell, Figueroa, Boyce, McCarthy, Jones (McArthur 65), Beausejour (Gomez 79), Kone (McManaman 87), Di Santo, Maloney.

Subs: Pollitt, Boselli, Stam, Golobart.

Booked: Boyce, Maloney.

Goals: Ramos 3, Boyce 52, Kone 56.

Att: 33,374.

Ref: Kevin Friend (Leicestershire).

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Two goals in the space of four minutes
early in the second half from Emmerson Boyce and Arouna Kone sealed
Villa's fate as their confidence visibly evaporated. They have now
shipped 15 goals in three games.

In the continued absence of such
players as Darren Bent, Richard Dunne, Gabriel Agbonlahor, Charles
N'Zogbia and Nathan Baker, the options open to under-pressure manager
Paul Lambert are very limited as illustrated in this latest defeat.

Just how much a lightweight Villa are
missing the commanding presence of Dunne was highlighted as early as the
third minute when Wigan took a shock lead.

Villa's inability to defend set-pieces
was blatantly exposed in the third minute after the ball ran out for a
corner as Matthew Lowton appeared to handle.

Jean Beausejour's accurate corner was
perfectly placed for the unmarked Ivan Ramis to mark his return to
action after missing six games with a powerful header past the
transfixed Brad

It was the 13th goal conceded by Guzan
and Villa in three games and once again gave the West Midlands club a
steep hill to climb.

Penalty decisions have gone against
Wigan this season and on this occasion they were again out of favour
when Stephen Ireland appeared to foul Shaun Maloney.

Seconds later Maloney had a wild shot
from the edge of the area with a gaping goal at his mercy when Villa
were again on the wrong foot.

Villa battled hard to retrieve the situation but they lacked a cutting edge.

Christian Benteke was extremely
subdued and it was left to the industrious Andress Weimann to pressurise
Wigan's defence in which Ramis and skipper Gary Caldwell were rock
solid.

Leap: Ramis nodded home to get another day of misery for Villa underway

Leap: Ramis nodded home to get another day of misery for Villa underway

Pulling the strings for the visitors
was Shaun Maloney. The Scottish international formerly played for Villa
but was allowed to return north of the border because he was homesick,
before joining Wigan last year.

Benteke finally found a route through
Wigan's defence in the 36th minute with a rasping shot only for the goal
to be disallowed with Weimann in an offside position.

After Emmerson Boyce and Maloney were
booked for reckless tackles Villa's best chance of an equaliser fell to
Brett Holman two minutes before the break when the Australian grazed the
crossbar with an angled shot.

All these efforts in search of an
equaliser were to no avail as seven minutes into the second half Wigan
consolidated their lead.

Boyce raced through despite the
attention of three Villa defenders and took a return pass from Arouna
Kone to fire his low shot past Guzan.

Early bird: Ramis headed home a corner after just three minutes against Villa's hapless defence

Early bird: Ramis headed home a corner after just three minutes against Villa's hapless defence

In the 56th minute Kone himself got in
on the goalscoring as he took a through pass from Di Santo as he sliced
his way through Villa's dithering defence to score from a tight angle
despite a challenge from Guzan.

Villa made a triple substitution sending on El Ahmadi, Bowery and Albrighton for Ireland, Holman and Lichaj.

The changes resulted in more attacking play but the damage had been done as Wigan were content to absorb the pressure.

It was the 13th goal conceded by Guzan
and Villa in three games and once again gave the West Midlands club a
steep hill to climb.

Penalty decisions have gone against
Wigan this season and on this occasion they were again out of favour
when Stephen Ireland appeared to foul Shaun Maloney.

Seconds later Maloney had a wild shot
from the edge of the area with a gaping goal at his mercy when Villa
were again on the wrong foot.

Despair: Stephen Ireland and Chris Herd look miserable during their defeat

Despair: Stephen Ireland and Chris Herd look miserable during their defeat

In the money: Emmerson Boyce popped up to double Wigan's lead

In the money: Emmerson Boyce popped up to double Wigan's lead

Villa battled hard to retrieve the situation but they lacked a cutting edge.

Christian Benteke was extremely
subdued and it was left to the industrious Andress Weimann to pressurise
Wigan's defence in which Ramis and skipper Gary Caldwell were rock
solid.

Pulling the strings for the visitors
was Shaun Maloney. The Scottish international formerly played for Villa
but was allowed to return north of the border because he was homesick,
before joining Wigan last year.

Benteke finally found a route through
Wigan's defence in the 36th minute with a rasping shot only for the goal
to be disallowed with Weimann in an offside position.

After Emmerson Boyce and Maloney were
booked for reckless tackles Villa's best chance of an equaliser fell to
Brett Holman two minutes before the break when the Australian grazed the
crossbar with an angled shot.

All these efforts in search of an
equaliser were to no avail as seven minutes into the second half Wigan
consolidated their lead.

Crunch: Franco Di Santo (right) goes in on Villa's Joe Bennett

Crunch: Franco Di Santo (right) goes in on Villa's Joe Bennett

Three and easy: Arouna Kone rounds Brad Guzan and tucks in the third

Three and easy: Arouna Kone rounds Brad Guzan and tucks in the third

Boyce raced through despite the
attention of three Villa defenders and took a return pass from Arouna
Kone to fire his low shot past Guzan.

In the 56th minute Kone himself got in
on the goalscoring as he took a through pass from Di Santo as he sliced
his way through Villa's dithering defence to score from a tight angle
despite a challenge from Guzan.

Villa made a triple substitution sending on El Ahmadi, Bowery and Albrighton for Ireland, Holman and Lichaj.

The changes resulted in more attacking play but the damage had been done as Wigan were content to absorb the pressure.

Laughing matter: Roberto Martinez saw his side bang in the goals for their first win in five

Laughing matter: Roberto Martinez saw his side bang in the goals for their first win in five

Shake on it: Martinez greets Villa mascot Hercules the Lion

Shake on it: Martinez greets Villa mascot Hercules the Lion

Chelsea 8 Aston Villa 0: Chelsea up to third

Chelsea 8 Aston Villa 0: Brilliant Blues back up to third after rout on Lampard landmark

|

UPDATED:

22:21 GMT, 23 December 2012

A month ago, hate dripped from the steep tiers at Stamford Bridge as Rafa Benitez appeared on the touchline. Yesterday, the place was thrilled by eight goals. Not once did the Chelsea fans join in song to tell Benitez he wasn’t wanted here.

The last time they saw their team score this many was the final game of the Barclays Premier League season in 2010, when Carlo Ancelotti’s team walloped Wigan to celebrate the first leg of their first Double.

Landmark: Lampard (second left) scored on his 500th Premier League start

Landmark: Lampard (second left) scored on his 500th Premier League start

MATCH FACTS

Chelsea: Cech, Azpilicueta, Ivanovic, Cahill, Cole, Luiz, Lampard (Ramires 61), Moses, Mata (Piazon 74), Hazard, Torres (Oscar 67).

Subs not used: Turnbull, Ferreira, Marin, Ake.

Goals: Torres 3, David Luiz 29, Ivanovic 34, Lampard 58, Ramires 75, 90, Oscar (pen) 79, Hazard 83.

Aston Villa: Guzan, Herd, Clark, Baker, Lowton, Bannan, Westwood (Ireland 57), Lichaj (Elliott 57), Weimann, Holman (Bowery 79), Benteke.

Subs not used: Given, El Ahmadi, Albrighton, Delph.

Referee: Phil Dowd (Staffordshire)

Attendance: 41,363.

Click here for the latest Premier League table, fixtures and results

But that was Carlo, a free-wheeling and popular manager who implored his players to attack. This was Rafa, a cautious tactician, always alert to danger, who sat down after an 8-0 win to say: ‘We knew they would be dangerous in the counter-attacks.’

Emotions were all over the place as post-Japan Chelsea returned to the Premier League in emphatic style by condemning Aston Villa to the biggest defeat in their 138-year history.

They may have arrived unbeaten in six games but Paul Lambert’s team went home perilously close to the drop zone with the worst goal difference in the division.

Villa were awful but Chelsea were slick and impressive.

There were eight goals from seven different scorers but there could have been many more.

The Blues even missed a penalty but go into Christmas 11 points behind leaders Manchester United with a game in hand at home to Southampton.

Opener: Fernando Torres got Chelsea off to a flying start

Opener: Fernando Torres got Chelsea off to a flying start

Opener: Fernando Torres got Chelsea off to a flying start

In a month of Benitez, Fernando Torres
has been transformed to the point where he seems to be enjoying his
football and refused to sulk off when he was replaced.

The Spain striker opened the scoring in the third minute, rising to meet a deep cross from Cesar Azpilicueta with a majestic header from the edge of the penalty area.

It was his seventh under the new manager and his seventh in the last six games.

‘He scores when he wants,’ sang the fans in the Matthew Harding Stand, saluting the Benitez factor without giving him credit.

This won’t bother the manager too much. He will take his satisfaction from the aggressive tempo which crushed Villa.

Stunner: Luiz hammered home a free-kick to double the lead

Stunner: Luiz hammered home a free-kick to double the lead

The back five have worked well for
Lambert since centre half and skipper Ron Vlaar was injured but Chelsea
forced them deep, creating space for Juan Mata, Eden Hazard and Victor
Moses.

Villa lurched from uncertainty to
desperation. Nathan Baker escaped a strong penalty appeal when he
appeared to hold Torres and Chelsea’s second came when Chris Herd sent
Hazard tumbling.

David Luiz stepped up and scored the
free-kick, a shot which wobbled over the wall and beat goalkeeper Brad
Guzan, a good yard inside his post.

Three and easy: Ivanovic rises to head home

Three and easy: Ivanovic rises to head home

Luiz, signed almost two years ago at
the same time as Torres, has also endured an oscillating career at the
club but appears to have made significant progress under Benitez, who
used him as a deep midfielder yesterday in the absence of John Mikel
Obi, who was banned.

The role suits Luiz, certainly when
Chelsea control possession. He performed it with success against
Monterrey in the Club World Cup semi-final and was comfortable against
Villa.

There is a safety net if he takes an undue risk and loses the
ball, as he did at Leeds in the Capital One Cup, yet his team benefit
from his exuberance and unpredictability in attack.

Club legend: Lampard takes the applause before being substituted after his goal

Club legend: Lampard takes the applause before being substituted after his goal

Club legend: Lampard takes the applause before being substituted after his goal

It was one of those days for
Chelsea. Not only were the converted centre halves threatening Guzan in
the Villa goal but so were the unconverted ones.

Guzan produced a terrific reflex save
to beat out Gary Cahill’s shot on the spin before the interval but the
rebound popped up to his defensive partner Branislav Ivanovic to head in
the third.

Fear took hold, mistakes crept in and Christian Benteke never looked
like scoring. The only chance of any note fell to Andreas Weimann — on
the break, as Benitez predicted — in the second half.

Weimann was denied by Petr Cech, who
deflected his low shot on to the bar to protect his clean sheet, despite
the fact the contest was already over.

Joining the party: Ramires came off the bench to net the fifth

Joining the party: Ramires came off the bench to net the fifth

Frank Lampard scored the fourth with a
right-foot volley from 30 yards. It was his 190th goal for Chelsea —
three behind Kerry Dixon, who stands second in the all-time goal list
for the club — on his 500th Premier League start.

It
was also his 130th top-flight goal for the club. No one has more.
Lampard was replaced a minute later to a standing ovation. Torres was
also taken off to rest ahead of the festive fixtures which will dictate
whether this is to turn into a genuine title fightback.

Six of the best: Oscar scored from the penalty spot

Six of the best: Oscar scored from the penalty spot

With Daniel Sturridge in Liverpool for a
medical, Moses played the last 23 minutes at centre forward and the
Blues finished with a front four of Moses, Oscar, Hazard and Lucas
Piazon, an 18-year-old Brazilian making his Premier League debut.

It was a quartet with an average age
of just over 20 but Piazon wasted no time making an impact, collecting
the ball on the left, gliding inside and finding Ramires, who scored
the fifth. It was a nice pass but did not need to be laser-guided.

Seventh heaven: Hazard slams home from inside the box

Seventh heaven: Hazard slams home from inside the box

Villa were all at sea by this stage and not helped when referee Phil Dowd started to hand out soft penalties.

Herd
was penalised for a slight pull on Oscar, who picked himself up to make
it six from the spot. Hazard lashed the seventh into the top corner and
Piazon missed a second penalty after he was fouled by Ciaran Clark.
Guzan made the save.

It was a very strange afternoon for the American goalkeeper.

Ramires scored the eighth in stoppage time and the Bridge stood to rejoice. For the man they reviled as the Spanish waiter, will it be any different after eight
Relentless: Ramires scores his second in stoppage time

Relentless: Ramires scores his second in stoppage time

Rout: Chelsea move back up to third in the Premier League table

Rout: Chelsea move back up to third in the Premier League table

Liverpool 1 Aston Villa 3 – match report

Liverpool 1 Aston Villa 3: Ruthless Benteke runs riot at Anfield with two goals and an assist

PUBLISHED:

16:50 GMT, 15 December 2012

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UPDATED:

17:07 GMT, 15 December 2012

Aston Villa exposed Liverpool's flaws and the flakiness of their challenge for a top-four place by inflicting the Reds' worst home defeat for more than three years.

Christian Benteke scored twice, either side of Andreas Weimann's well-worked goal, before Steven Gerrard's late consolation as the hosts' three-match winning run was ended in surprising fashion.

It was the first time Villa had scored more than once in any half of league football this season and extended their own unbeaten run to five matches, with only a second away win in 17 away league games.

Brilliant: Christian Benteke celebrated scoring his first goal at Anfield

Brilliant: Christian Benteke celebrated scoring his first goal at Anfield

MATCH FACTS

Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Agger, Skrtel, Gerrard, Downing, Lucas (Henderson 60), Allen, Sterling, Shelvey (Cole 46), Suarez,

Subs not used: Jones, Coates, Carragher, Wisdom, Suso

Booked: Suarez

Goal: Gerrard 87

Aston Villa: Guzan, Clark, Lichaj, Baker, Lowton, Westwood, Bannan (El Ahmadi 85), Herd, Holman (Delph 69), Benteke, Weimann (N'Zogbia 90)

Subs not used: Given, Bennett, Albrighton, Bowery

Booked: Lowton, Benteke

Goals: Benteke 29, 51, Weimann 40

Referee: Neil Swarbrick

Attendance: 44,607

The latest Premier League table, fixtures and results

Villa inflicted the same scoreline in
August 2009, and although both sides are at a lower level now, this was
a result no-one would have predicted.

The visitors almost doubled their
league away goals tally for the campaign, which now stands at seven, in
recording only their fifth Anfield victory in 34 visits.

Yet barely 24 hours earlier Liverpool
manager Brendan Rodgers had been talking about targeting second-placed
Manchester City so high was the confidence in his squad.

City are now 14 points ahead and,
worse still, Liverpool failed to take advantage of Everton's draw at
Stoke to close the gap on fourth place with many of their rivals playing
tomorrow.

For their part Villa moved three
points clear of the relegation zone. The opening half-hour was virtually
one-way traffic as the home side set off at pace in search of a third
successive Barclays Premier League victory for the first time since May
2011.

But their eagerness seemed to get the
better of them as there was an air of over-complication and lack of
finesse about their play in the final third.

Stewart Downing, who in the matchday
programme revealed Rodgers had told him he could leave and he would
assess his options in January, started left-back for the injured Jose
Enrique but enjoyed plenty of space down the flank.

From bad to worse: Pepe Reina is left on his back after Andreas Weimann put the ball beyond his reach

From bad to worse: Pepe Reina is left on his back after Andreas Weimann put the ball beyond his reach

Gerrard bundled a shot at goalkeeper
Brad Guzan after a poor pass behind him from Luis Suarez, returning
after suspension, rebounded back off Raheem Sterling before Downing shot
wide after cutting in on his right foot.

It continued with Joe Allen driving
wide, Gerrard's feet getting in a tangle after being picked out by
Suarez's inch-perfect cross-field ball, and Shelvey delaying his shot
long enough got Nathan Baker to block after Suarez capitalised on Chris
Herd's mistake.

Liverpool's inability to take their chances has hurt them in the past and it proved to be the case again in the 29th minute.

Tormentor: Benteke was rampant for Villa

Tormentor: Benteke was rampant for Villa

Coming together: Luis Suarez (right) collides with Brad Guzan

Coming together: Luis Suarez (right) collides with Brad Guzan

Brett Holman passed inside to
Benteke, who took a touch and – with no-one closing him down – unleashed
a low shot which beat Reina off the inside of his right-hand post.

What a difference the goal made as Villa suddenly started playing 30 yards further up the field.

It almost paid off when Weimann
seized on Glen Johnson's weak header to lob Reina, only for the ball to
drop on to the roof of the net.

The Austrian did not make the same mistake just before half-time with a brilliantly-worked goal.
Weimann released Benteke in the inside-right channel and raced into a
gaping hole in the Liverpool defence to turn the striker's clever
backheel under Reina.

Joe Cole's emergence for the second
half at the expense of Shelvey highlighted the lack of genuine
match-winners outside of Rodgers' first XI.

Contested: Liverpool could not capitalise on their strong start

Contested: Liverpool could not capitalise on their strong start

Cheery: Brendan Rodgers had the smile wiped off his face when Benteke and Co ran riot

Cheery: Brendan Rodgers had the smile wiped off his face when Benteke and Co ran riot

They should, however, have got back
into the game early in the second half when Ciaran Clark clearly pulled
Daniel Agger's shirt in the penalty area, but referee Neil Swarbrick
maintained Liverpool's record of not winning a penalty this season by
ignoring the appeals.

It proved costly as when Cole was
robbed by Holman on the halfway line, Benteke was sensibly quickly given
possession and he danced through the Reds backline to chip a shot past
Reina.
Liverpool laid siege to Guzman's goal in the final half-hour, with
further claims for a penalty when Johnson's header hit Baker's arm also
going unanswered.

When they finally made a breakthrough it came too late with Gerrard heading in Johnson's cross-shot three minutes from the end.

There was just enough time left for
Benteke to escape with a yellow card for pushing Johnson in the face in
front of a rapidly-emptying Anfield.

Double trouble: Benteke and Weimann ensured Villa were out of sight by the time Steven Gerrard scored

Double trouble: Benteke and Weimann ensured Villa were out of sight by the time Steven Gerrard scored

Notching them up: Weimann has been in fine form of late

Notching them up: Weimann has been in fine form of late

Paul Lambert stays grounded after Norwich beat Aston Villa

Villa boss Lambert stays grounded after thrashing former club Norwich to progress

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UPDATED:

23:41 GMT, 11 December 2012

Paul Lambert remained humble in victory after Aston Villa booked their place in the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup with a 4-1 win at old club Norwich.

Lambert received a mixed welcome as he walked out at Carrow Road, with a few jeers heard among general applause for the man who masterminded the Norfolk club's meteoric rise up to the top flight from the depths of npower League One.

However, the former Canaries boss, who is in dispute with his old employers after an acrimonious departure during the summer, enjoyed the last laugh as substitute Andreas Weimann hit a second-half brace to turn the tie around after Brent Holman had cancelled out Steve Morison's opener.

Gracious: Paul Lambert watched his new club cruise past Norwich in the Capital One Cup quarter final

Gracious: Paul Lambert watched his new club cruise past Norwich in the Capital One Cup quarter final

Christian Benteke cracked in a fourth during stoppage time to move Villa within 180 minutes of Wembley.

'I thought we were excellent for the whole game,' Lambert said.

'We have been playing like that since the Sunderland game, but I am delighted, I really am.'

Lambert, who is been represented by the League Managers' Association in his arbitration hearing with Norwich, which is set for early next year, maintained he will always look back on his time at Carrow Road with pride.

'I had three great years here. We gave anyone a really good run for their money. I love the club. I've got nothing but praise for the football club,' he said.

'You like to think they [fans] appreciate what you have done and I appreciate the support they gave us.

'It is great club with great fans, but this is Chris' (Hughton) team now, he has done fantastically well with the position he has got them into and we will try and catch them.'

Villa's travelling support were in full voice on what was a bitterly cold night in East Anglia.

Just like that: Christian Benteke scored yet another goal

Just like that: Christian Benteke scored yet another goal

In it goes: Andreas Weimann scored twice for Aston Villa

In it goes: Andreas Weimann scored twice for Aston Villa

Lambert hopes to give them more to cheer about over the coming months as he aims to reconstruct the Midlands club.

'I have never been to Wembley, although I have been to watch a game,' he said.

'But it's not anything I have thought about – we have still got a couple of games to go.

'However, it gives the club something to look forward. The fans deserve a pick up as well.

'Whatever happens [for the semi-finals], Villa Park will be jam-packed.

'I will be more pleased with the pleasure the players get from it because I don't play the game any more.'

Lambert had handed Darren Bent a rare start, only for the England striker, who saw an early one-on-one saved, to limp off just after the hour with a hamstring problem.

Lambert said: 'I thought he looked pretty sharp. It was a blow for us, I don't know how serious it is.'

At home: Grant Holt (right) was unable to prevent his former manager getting a win at Carrow Road

At home: Grant Holt (right) was unable to prevent his former manager getting a win at Carrow Road

Norwich had been defending an unbeaten 10-game run heading into tonight's game, and certainly had their chances to put the tie beyond Villa at the start of the second half, when Morison missed twice in quick succession and Villa keeper Shay Given produced a brilliant reaction save to deny Grant Holt.

Canaries boss Hughton, who turned 54 today, said: 'We needed to make sure we held onto our 1-0 lead longer, and then at the start of the second half, we had a great chance and if that goes in then possibly it is a different story.

'Villa are a good footballing side and they were more clinical than us.

'It is really disappointing because we had been on a good run.

'We have to take it on the chin and now need to make sure we can get back on track for Saturday against Wigan.'

Norwich 1 Aston Villa 4: Match report

Norwich 1 Aston Villa 4: Semi-final relief for returning Lambert but Bent hobbles off in rare start

|

UPDATED:

21:42 GMT, 11 December 2012

Darren Bent made a rare appearance for Aston Villa, but may wish he hadn't after limping off after 35 minutes as Paul Lambert made a winning return to Norwich with his side booking a place in the Capital One Cup semi-finals.

The Canaries took the lead through Steve Morison, but Brett Holman brought Villa back on terms after 21 minutes.

Bent was then taken off with what looked like a hamstring problem but Villa went on to book their place in the semis with two second-half strikes from Andreas Weimann and a goal from Christian Benteke.

Brace yourself: Weimann's double secured Villa's spot in the semi-finals

Brace yourself: Weimann's double secured Villa's spot in the semi-finals

Match facts

Norwich: Bunn, Martin, Barnett, Bassong, Tierney, Snodgrass, Howson, Johnson, Pilkington, Holt, Morison.

Subs not used : Rudd, Turner, Jackson, Fox, Elliott Bennett, Garrido, Francomb.

Scorer: Morison

Aston Villa: Given, Clark, Herd, Baker, Lowton, El Ahmadi, Delph, Holman, Lichaj, Benteke, Bent.

Subs not used: Guzan, N'Zogbia, Agbonlahor, Albrighton, Bannan, Weimann, Williams.

Scorers: Holman 21; Weimann 79, 84; Benteke 90.

Attendance: 26,142

Referee: Michael Oliver (Northumberland)

Game over: Bent hobbled off after half an hour in a rare start for Villa

Game over: Bent hobbled off after half an hour in a rare start for Villa

Game over: Bent hobbled off after half an hour in a rare start for Villa

Paul Lambert balks at Darren Bent benching questions

Bent left on bench for over an hour in dire draw with Stoke and Lambert won't say why

|

UPDATED:

18:55 GMT, 8 December 2012

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert is convinced his side will eventually find the back of the net on a more regular basis despite drawing another blank in the 0-0 home draw with Stoke.

Villa have netted only 12 times in 16 Barclays Premier League games and even the reintroduction of Darren Bent as a second-half substitute failed to spark a breakthrough against the Potters.

On the slide: Aston Villa's Brett Holman is tackled by Robert Huth

On the slide: Aston Villa's Brett Holman is tackled by Robert Huth

MATCH FACTS

ASTON VILLA: Guzan, Lowton, Baker, Clark, Lichaj, Herd, Holman (Ireland 65), Westwood, Bannan (Delph 77), Benteke, Agbonlahor (Bent 65). Subs not used: Given, Al Ahmadi, Weimann, Williams.

STOKE CITY: Begovic, Shotton, Huth, Shawcross, Cameron, Walters, Whitehead, N'Zonzi, Whelan, Etherington (Jerome 67), Jones (Crouch 74). Subs not used: Sorensen, Palacios, Upson, Kightly, Wilkinson.

Yellow cards: Shotton

Red Card: Shotton

Referee: Roger East

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Lambert brought a halt to questions
about Bent in his after match press conference after claiming he has
already answered enough enquiries about not playing the England
international.

He said: 'Look, I want to win, it's
as simple as that, and on another day we might have got one or two goals
and restricted Stoke to one real chance.

'It (the goals tally) is something I'm not actually overly worried about because I know it will come.'

When asked if Bent's inclusion would
improve the situation, Lambert said: 'The team will. It's not just
about one individual, it's about the whole team.

'There never has been a problem (with Bent) from day one.

'As I've said before, I just try and pick a team to win. That's what I try to do, it's my job.'

On the run: Villa duo Brett Holman and Gabriel Agbonlahor drift past Geoff Cameron

On the run: Villa duo Brett Holman and Gabriel Agbonlahor drift past Geoff Cameron

When asked whether Bent's presence
would improve the goal tally, Lambert said: 'Listen, I'm going to stop
you. I ain't answering any more questions on it.

'I told you, I answered about 305 the other night. I'm not answering anymore.'

Lambert was pleased with Villa's overall performance as they extended their unbeaten run to four games.

Dive in move: Stoke City's Geoff Cameron falls over Holman

Dive in move: Stoke City's Geoff Cameron falls over Holman

He said: 'I thought we dominated the game. I was delighted with the way we coped with Stoke's strength.

'I was asked that yesterday, how we would combat that, and I think we used our strengths by playing football.

'I thought we were excellent. Some of the football we're playing has been very good. We just need the finishing touch.'

Time for a change: Stoke manager Tony Pulis substitutes Glenn Whelan

Time for a change: Stoke manager Tony Pulis substitutes Glenn Whelan

Crunch time: Villa's Ashley Westwood is tackled by Huth

It's a snorer: Darren Bent appears to doze on the bench

Crunch time: Villa's Ashley Westwood is tackled by Huth while Darren Bent appears to drift off on the bench

Stoke boss Tony Pulis was unhappy
with some of referee Roger East's decisions, including the dismissal of
defender Ryan Shotton for two yellow card offences.

Replays showed Shotton made no contact with Villa substitute Fabian Delph in the incident which led to his second booking.

But Pulis was also unhappy after a
first-half challenge by Villa defender Ciaran Clark on Stoke midfielder
Glenn Whelan went unpunished.

No way through: Christian Benteke is challenged by Stoke's Ryan Shawcross

No way through: Christian Benteke is challenged by Stoke's Ryan Shawcross

Appeal: Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert reacts to a decision

Appeal: Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert reacts to a decision

He said: 'As regards the Shotton red card, I've just looked at the incident and we are very disappointed.

'I was also disappointed with the challenge in the first half (by Clark) and the way that was dealt with.

'When you see a lad getting sent off for two bookables which you can't appeal against, it is very hard to take.

Close quarters: Dean Whitehead is challenged by Villa's Westwood

Close quarters: Dean Whitehead is challenged by Villa's Westwood

'You look at the incidents and decide
what you think. I don't want to get in trouble again. It has cost me
enough money over my career!

'You can't appeal two yellow cards which I find amazing.'

As regards the Clark incident,
Lambert said: 'I think it's a foul in the first place – that's what the
referee gave it for initially, then there was the follow-through.

'But initially he gave the foul to ourselves. Things like that happen in football.'

Waiting game: Darren Bent had to wait until the 65th minute before making an appearance

Waiting game: Darren Bent had to wait until the 65th minute before making an appearance

Aston Villa 1 Reading 0 – match report: Christian Benteke strikes late

Aston Villa 1 Reading 0: Who needs Bent when you've got Benteke Big Belgian saves the day for Lambert

|

UPDATED:

02:08 GMT, 28 November 2012

Paul Lambert’s gamble on youth looked brave when he decided upon his Premier League strategy at the start of the season.

For 80 minutes, as Aston Villa made heavy weather of escaping the relegation zone, his decision looked increasingly desperate.

The former Norwich City boss stamped his credentials on the club within days of arriving in the post vacated by Alex McLeish. They were again evident as he once more omitted Darren Bent from his matchday squad.

Magic moment: Christian Benteke scored the only goal of the game with a late header

Magic moment: Christian Benteke scored the only goal of the game with a late header

Rise and fall: Benteke leaps above the defender to break the deadlock

Rise and fall: Benteke leaps above the defender to break the deadlock

MATCH FACTS

Aston Villa: Guzan, Lowton, Baker, Clark, Stevens (Lichaj 24), Holman (Ireland 67), Westwood, Bannan, Weimann (Albrighton 68), Agbonlahor, Benteke.

Subs not used: Given, Ireland, El Ahmadi, Albrighton, Delph, Bowery, Lichaj.

Booked: Clark.

Goal: Benteke 80.

Reading: Federici, Cummings, Morrison, Mariappa, Shorey, Robson-Kanu (McCleary 83), Leigertwood, Tabb, McAnuff, Roberts (Hunt 79), Le Fondre.

Subs not used: Taylor, Pearce, Pogrebnyak, McCleary, Harte, Gunnarsson.

Att: 28,692.

Ref: Lee Probert (Wiltshire).

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But with 10 minutes to play of an
encounter with Reading that had only added to the air of general
frustration inside Villa Park, salvation was to hand.

It came in the shape of striker
Christian Benteke, an 8million signing from Genk on deadline day who is
rapidly proving to be one of the finds of the season.

He has the raw power of a young Emile
Heskey and his fifth goal of the campaign was one the former England
forward would have been proud of.

Ashley Westwood swung a corner to the
far post and the Belgium international out-jumped his marker, Sean
Morrison, to head home a goal that may prove priceless in the eventual
outcome of Lambert’s inaugural season.

In fairness to the Villa manager, his
side had looked by far the likelier of the two to find the net. The
noise which greeted Benteke’s winner was a mixture of relief and
elation.

And possibly nowhere more so was the
victory warmly received than on the home bench. Lambert swapped dug-outs
during the summer to be closer to Villa’s core support in the Holte
End.

Although he has made the right noises
so far, those which were coming back at him were the voices of a
supporter-base that was growing increasingly tired of platitudes. After
all, this was just Villa’s third home league victory in 13 months.
Unsurprisingly then, Lambert hailed match-winner Benteke.

‘He’s been fantastic for this club,
and for the national team,’ he said. ‘He’s growing up. For his age, he’s
a strong lad with very good ability. He always seems to get a chance,
whether it’s a header or a shot. He’s becoming a real fans’ favourite.’

Weimann wonders how he missed

Bannan and Tabb scrap for the ball

Blunder: Andreas Weimann (left) missed a great chance, while Barry Bannan and Jay Tabb fight for the ball

Take that: Villa's Nathan Baker (right) dives in on Jason Roberts

Take that: Villa's Nathan Baker (right) dives in on Jason Roberts

One person who is nowhere near the description of being a manager’s favourite, however, is Bent.

Despite the fact that Villa had not
scored in four of their last eight games and were struggling in front of
goal, Lambert believed untried signing Jordan Bowery carried more of a
goal threat than Bent.

‘I have no problem with his attitude
in training, none whatsoever,’ said Villa’s boss, ‘I watch him train
every day. I live and die by my decisions. I’ve picked a team to win,
not to lose.’ Asked what Bent needed to do to force his way back into
his thinking, Lambert replied: ‘Train well and play well.’

Lambert named a Villa team that
contained eight players aged 23 or under in a contest that for all the
world could be labelled a six-pointer. It was the youngest average age
of a Villa side in the Premier League era.

Attrition: Enda Stevens (right) vies for the ball with Reading forward Adam Le Fondre

Attrition: Enda Stevens (right) vies for the ball with Reading forward Adam Le Fondre

Struggle: Reading's Shaun Cummings and Aston Villa's Gabriel Agbonlahor battle for the ball

Struggle: Reading's Shaun Cummings and Aston Villa's Gabriel Agbonlahor battle for the ball

They were on top for long periods. It
will be of little relevance to Lambert that had Bent been on the pitch,
the contest may have been decided far earlier.

As it was, Andreas Weimann blazed over
the best chance of the first-half. Ciaran Clark was off-target with two
near-post headers and Benteke shot tamely into Adam Federici’s arms
when well-placed.

Referee Lee Probert failed to award a
spot-kick after Adrian Mariappa’s clumsy challenge on Weimann as the
Austria forward was making his way away from goal. At the other end,
Brad Guzan had blocked from Hal Robson-Kanu during the early skirmishes.

What is this Brian McDermott looks on as the teams churned out a dull game

What is this Brian McDermott looks on as the teams churned out a dull game

Until Jason Roberts twisted and turned
his way into the area only for Guzan to block a much simpler shot with
his legs, that was about as good as it got for the visitors.

The travelling support pleaded with
manager Brian McDermott to make a change. ‘It was a good idea, making a
sub,’ he said wryly afterwards. But Noel Hunt’s introduction had little
effect. Of far more relevance was the statistic that Reading have now
conceded 16 times in the last half-hour this season. It’s a trend that
could prove costly.

‘It was not a six-pointer,’ said
McDermott. ‘It’s a game of football. Villa have 13 points, they want
more than that. We have nine and we want more than that.’

But for Benteke, Reading would have.

Is that the time Paul Lambert checks his watch

Is that the time Paul Lambert checks his watch

Salvation: Benteke's goal was the highlight of the match

Salvation: Benteke's goal was the highlight of the match

VIDEO: ASTON VILLA 1 READING 0: MATCH HIGHLIGHTS

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