Premier League
Aston Villa1West Ham0

Aston Villa 1-0 West Ham United

Tom Cleverley
Tom Cleverley had also scored against Manchester City and Everton
  • Villa move four points clear of danger
  • One more win will secure survival
  • West Ham without a goal in three games
  • Hammers drop to 10th place

Tom Cleverley's third goal in successive games gave Aston Villa a huge push towards Premier League safety as they beat West Ham.

The midfielder scored from close range after Jack Grealish's cut-back on 31 minutes to move Villa four points clear of the bottom three.

West Ham were livelier in the second half after an awful opening 45 minutes.

Striker Enner Valencia headed in a cross from Brazilian substitute Nene, but was judged marginally offside.

Victory means that Villa will secure their Premier League status with a win at Southampton next Saturday, regardless of results elsewhere.

Tim Sherwood's side faced a nervous final 20 minutes after failing to build a bigger lead during a dominant first half.

Perm two from five: the relegation run-in
10 May16 May20 May24 May
*Burnley (29 pts with two games to play) are relegated
Aston Villa (38 pts)-Southampton (A)-Burnley (H)
Leicester (37 pts)-Sunderland (A)-QPR (H)
Sunderland (36 pts)-Leicester (H)Arsenal (A)Chelsea (A)
Newcastle (36 pts)-QPR (A)-West Ham (H)
Hull (34 pts)-Tottenham (A)-Man Utd (H)
QPR (27 pts)Man City (A)Newcastle (H)-Leicester (A)

But the FA Cup finalists were well worth their third win in four league matches, with Grealish a creative threat and Christian Benteke's power causing problems.

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Villa scrapped for win - Sherwood

There was positive news too with the return from a hamstring injury of second-half substitute Gabby Agbonlahor, who missed a late chance to mark his return with a goal, after being sent clear by Grealish.

West Ham felt they should have had a first-half penalty as Valencia was dragged down by Leandro Bacuna as they contested Morgan Amalfitano's corner, but referee Lee Mason ruled instead that Kevin Nolan had fouled Villa keeper Shay Given.

Hammers manager Sam Allardyce also protested over the ruling out of Valencia's goal, believing that the Ecuador international was level with the last defender when he headed in midway through the second half.

Goal-shy Hammers
West Ham have managed just four Premier League away goals in 2015 - the joint-lowest total in the division, shared with Newcastle and Hull.

But Villa had seen several chances come and go by then, with Hammers keeper Adrian punching out a Cleverley volley, Benteke slicing wide after finding space and Fabian Delph firing straight at the keeper before the goal arrived.

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Hammers' cutting edge missing - Allardyce

West Ham, who have struggled for goals in recent weeks, did look more of a threat after Alex Song and Nene had replaced Amalfitano and Nolan at half-time.

Nene was just off target with a couple of long-range efforts, while Given had to turn over former Villa defender James Collins' looping header from a corner late in the game.

Villa, though, secured a win - and look to have done enough to ensure that, should former Chelsea business director Paul Smith's planned £150m takeover go through, he will be buying a Premier League club.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood: "I've no interest in other results. I've said that for weeks and weeks. It's in our own hands. We do our job. We win.

"Today wasn't pretty, but we scrapped it out. We thoroughly deserved the win, no question about that.

"When I have a cup of tea and watch this game back on Monday, I'll be quite comfortable watching it."

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce: "Our cutting edge has been missing for many weeks. We don't have anybody who can score a goal.

"It doesn't matter how many chances we create, we're not scoring. We'll struggle to win a game between now and the end of the season if we can't score a goal."

Jack Grealish and Aaron Cresswell
Aston Villa enjoyed more of the chances - with 14 shots at goal to West Ham's five
Alex Song and Jack Grealish
Alex Song was involved in a second-half confrontation with Villa youngster Jack Grealish
Shay Given and Ron Vlaar
Villa kept their first home league clean sheet since 1 January
Tim Sherwood
Victory over Southampton or Burnley will ensure safety for Villa, regardless of other results

Line-ups

Aston Villa

  • 31Given
  • 7BacunaSubstituted forHuttonat 77'minutes
  • 5Okore
  • 4Vlaar
  • 18Richardson
  • 8Cleverley
  • 15Westwood
  • 16Delph
  • 28N'ZogbiaBooked at 45minsSubstituted forAgbonlahorat 71'minutes
  • 20Benteke
  • 40GrealishSubstituted forSánchezat 90+2'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Guzan
  • 10Weimann
  • 11Agbonlahor
  • 12Cole
  • 14Senderos
  • 21Hutton
  • 24Sánchez

West Ham

  • 13Adrián
  • 18Jenkinson
  • 19Collins
  • 32Burke
  • 3Cresswell
  • 16NobleSubstituted forColeat 78'minutes
  • 8Kouyaté
  • 11Downing
  • 4NolanSubstituted forSongat 45'minutesBooked at 72mins
  • 21AmalfitanoSubstituted forde Carvalhoat 45'minutes
  • 31E Valencia

Substitutes

  • 7Jarvis
  • 12de Carvalho
  • 17O'Brien
  • 22Jääskeläinen
  • 24Cole
  • 30Song
  • 39Cullen
Referee:
Lee Mason
Attendance:
39,294

Match Stats

Home TeamAston VillaAway TeamWest Ham
Possession
Home58%
Away42%
Shots
Home14
Away6
Shots on Target
Home5
Away1
Corners
Home2
Away6
Fouls
Home6
Away13

Live Text

Match ends, Aston Villa 1, West Ham United 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Aston Villa 1, West Ham United 0.

Attempt saved. Tom Cleverley (Aston Villa) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Fabian Delph.

Attempt missed. James Collins (West Ham United) header from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Stewart Downing with a cross following a corner.

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Alan Hutton.

Substitution

Substitution, Aston Villa. Carlos Sánchez replaces Jack Grealish.

Attempt missed. Gabriel Agbonlahor (Aston Villa) left footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jack Grealish.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Christian Benteke (Aston Villa) because of an injury.

Shay Given (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by James Collins (West Ham United).

Foul by Alan Hutton (Aston Villa).

Enner Valencia (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Attempt missed. Ashley Westwood (Aston Villa) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

Foul by Tom Cleverley (Aston Villa).

Nenê (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution

Substitution, West Ham United. Carlton Cole replaces Mark Noble.

Substitution

Substitution, Aston Villa. Alan Hutton replaces Leandro Bacuna.

Booking

Alexandre Song (West Ham United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Foul by Alexandre Song (West Ham United).

Substitution

Substitution, Aston Villa. Gabriel Agbonlahor replaces Charles N'Zogbia.

Corner, Aston Villa. Conceded by Cheikhou Kouyaté.

Offside, West Ham United. Nenê tries a through ball, but Enner Valencia is caught offside.

Tom Cleverley (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Cheikhou Kouyaté (West Ham United).

Attempt missed. Nenê (West Ham United) left footed shot from a difficult angle and long range on the right is just a bit too high. Assisted by Alexandre Song.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Enner Valencia (West Ham United) because of an injury.

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Shay Given.

Attempt saved. James Collins (West Ham United) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Mark Noble with a cross.

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Ron Vlaar.

Offside, West Ham United. Mark Noble tries a through ball, but Enner Valencia is caught offside.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Aaron Cresswell (West Ham United) because of an injury.

Attempt missed. Charles N'Zogbia (Aston Villa) right footed shot from the right side of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Kieran Richardson.

Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Kieran Richardson.

Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Alexandre Song (West Ham United).

Attempt missed. Nenê (West Ham United) left footed shot from outside the box is just a bit too high. Assisted by Stewart Downing.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Chelsea35258269274283
2Man City35217771363570
3Arsenal34217666333370
4Man Utd36208861362568
5Liverpool351871049381161
6Tottenham36177125553258
7Southampton361761348301857
8Swansea35158124344-153
9Stoke36148144244-250
10West Ham361211134343047
11Everton361111144648-244
12Crystal Palace36119164350-742
13West Brom361011153447-1341
14Aston Villa36108183050-2038
15Leicester36107194154-1337
16Sunderland35715133050-2036
17Newcastle3699183761-2436
18Hull36810183349-1634
19Burnley36611192753-2629
20QPR3576223961-2227
View full Premier League table

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