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  • Writer's pictureBy Paul Lagan at Villa Park

Mount’s double, the second a wonderful Beckham-like free-kick downs Aston Villa 2-0 at Villa Park

By Paul Lagan at Villa Park

Aston Villa 0 v Chelsea 2

Mason Mount is warming up his performances by the week and that can only be good for Chelsea and potentially brilliant for England.

The 23-year-old scored his first goals of the season, the second a beauty of a free-kick that would have had David Beckham, at his prime, purring with admiration.

Aston Villa, by contrast sit uncomfortably just about the relegation zone as the west Londoners took all three points in a commanding game that saw them run out winners, at Villa Park by two goals to nil.

Chelsea coach Graham Potter opted for a three-man defence with Raheem Sterling detailed as right wing-back l. It was a formation that just about worked but failed to last the full game

Villa could have scored within the first two minutes. An overload on the Raheem Sterling wing-back position, saw Tyrone Mings clip a looping left-footed byline effort to the edge of the Chelsea area, but Danny Ings cushioned right-footer volley was well held by Kepa.

Within a couple of minutes, Ben Chillwell went on a run on the left, his effort looped into the air - Tyrone Mings made a hash of a headed clearance, and in-running Mason Mount tucked the ball home from close range, giving Emilano Martinez no chance.

Chelsea went to sleep again in 15 minutes when another clipped right byline cross was met this time by the head of Leon Bailey, but the ball just clipped the Chelsea crossbar and was cleared.

Chelsea survived a triple attempt on goal and Kepa was the hero of the proceedings - producing

twofine saves - the second from John McGinn was excellent tipping his shot onto the post before an offside called an end to the mini siege.

When Thiago Silva was dispossessed on the byline on 26 minutes, Ings nipped in. But the angle was tight and Villa lacked the creative instinct to support the striker who could do little with the ball and it was eventually cleared by Mount.

Chelsea looked decidedly shaky in the back three and Ings again took advantage two minutes later. He was in a better position this time on the other side of goal, but his angled shot was parried away by Kepa.

A sensational finger-tipped close-range save by Kepa denied Villa an equaliser their attacks deserved when the Spain international stopper tipped over a point-blank header by Ings.

Chelsea’s back three was getting exposed consistently but on the occasion when the Blues attacked , they looked dangerous, and on 41 minutes, a smart counter-attack saw Sterling, on the edge of the Villa area. He clipped a curling right-footer onto the crossbar, before it too was cleared.

Graham Potter, knowing what the thousands of Chelsea fans knew, that the defence needed sorting, brought on experienced skipper Cesar Azpilicueta and Kalidou Koulibaly, with Havertz and Marc Cucurella making way.

Villa continued where they left off in the opening Of the second half, attacking with pace. Chelsea hoped the substitutions would provide greater stability.

Conor Gallagher entered the fray on 58 minutes, replacing the largely ineffective Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Jorginho replaced Mateo Kovacic on 65 minutes.

When Mount was knocked over by Mings, 22 yards out. Up stepped the England midfielder who produced a Beckham-like free kick that dipped late over Martínez and plopped firmly into the back of his net.

Chelsea move up to fourth in the league and face another tricky away game on Wednesday, away to Brentford.

Teams: Chelsea, Kepa, Silva, Kovacic, Aubameyang, Loftus-Cheek, Chalobah, Sterling, Mount, Chilwell, Havertz, Cucurella

Subs: Mendy, Jorginho, Pulisic, Broja, Zakaria, Gallagher, Koubilaly, Azpilicueta, Chuckwuemeka

Villa: Martinez, Cash, Konsa, Mings, Luiz, McGinn, Ings, Watkins, Young, Bailey, Ramsey

Sub: Olsen, Samson, Buendia, Chambers, Nakamba, Bednarek, Coutinho, Dendoncker, Bogarde

Referee: Robert Jones


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