Bournemouth 2-0 Aston Villa: Cherries cause opening-day upset
Bournemouth vs Aston Villa recap: The newly promoted Cherries caused quite an upset on the opening day of the 2022-23 Premier League season, as they beat Villa 2-0 at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday.
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Jefferson Lerma opened the scoring after just two minutes and Kieffer Moore put the game to bed with the second in the 80th minute. Aston Villa had the lion’s share of possession and shots, but managed just two on target on hardly threatened Scott Parker’s side.
What we learned from Bournemouth vs Aston Villa
Defensively sound goes a long way toward results
All credit goes to Bournemouth, who conceded 65 goals (3rd-most) the last time they were in the Premier League (2019-20), as well as Parker for the way the Cherries defended and made Saturday’s game as uneventful as they possibly could. The three center backs, Chris Mepham, Lloyd Kelly and Lerma, were timely inside the penalty area (27 clearances between them) as they sat deep with plenty of red shirts surrounding the ball.
Tyrone Mings dropped as Steven Gerrard takes hardline approach
When asked why the ever-present Tyrone Mings (36 PL starts each of the last two seasons) wasn’t in the starting lineup on Saturday, Steven Gerrard was somewhat cryptic in his explanation, but dangled just enough out there to 1) paint a picture that all is not rosy between player and manager, but more importantly, 2) challenge the now-former captain in a very public manner to find out how he’ll respond.
Stars of the show
Lloyd Kelly - Bournemouth’s left-sided center back was as busy as anyone defensively, but the 23-year-old also managed to pick up the assist on goal no. 2.
Lucas Digne - Aston Villa’s left back was sharp with a pass and a cross, frequently at the heart of his side’s best attacking moments, but that’s partly because the Cherries clogged the middle defensively and forced everything out wide.
Up next for Bournemouth is probably not another 2-0 victory, as they travel to the northwest where they’ll face two-time defending champions Manchester City.
As for Aston Villa, Gerrard and Co., will try to right the ship when Frank Lampard and Everton visit Villa Park on Saturday.