Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

Swans sink off-colour Villa

Wayne Routledge

Swansea deservedly claimed their first away win in the Barclays Premier League as they beat Aston Villa 2-0.

The Welsh side went ahead in the fourth minute when Stephen Warnock got in a mix-up and gave the ball straight to Nathan Dyer, who took it on before firing past Brad Guzan.

Wayne Routledge then made it 2-0 shortly after half-time, pouncing when Danny Graham hit the post, to seal a maiden victory on the road for the Swans since their promotion to the top flight last summer and condemn their opponents to a fourth successive defeat at Villa Park.

As anticipated, Swans boss Brendan Rodgers refreshed his side, restoring the likes of Graham, Leon Britton and Angel Rangel to the starting line-up.

Villa's record signing Darren Bent came in for Marc Albrighton. Villa made a terrible start as Swansea snatched an early lead following a blunder by Warnock.

The defender needlessly lost possession in his own half and Dyer took full advantage, collecting the loose ball, driving into the box and firing a shot into the corner of the net.

Gabriel Agbonlahor appeared to be put off by his team-mate Bent as he headed Charles N'Zogbia's cross wide.

Swansea then went close to doubling their advantage as Andrea Orlandi was given the space to advance before flashing a strike across Guzan's goal. Stephen Ireland saw an effort deflected behind and James Collins had a header saved.

Warnock suffered more embarrassment just before the half-hour mark as he was left for dead by Dyer, whose cut-back was met by Graham to bring a stop out of Guzan. N'Zogbia then blazed a free-kick over the crossbar.

Within just two minutes of the restart Guzan's kick went straight to Routledge, who passed to Graham and then reacted swiftly when the striker hit the post, tucking away the rebound. N'Zogbia's shot was blocked and then Richard Dunne headed over before N'Zogbia nearly pulled one back but his shot hit the goal frame.

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