Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 6 August 2020

Dean Smith: Aston Villa must build on first Premier League win since February 2016

Everton defeated 2-0 at Villa Park to give promoted club first points of new campaign

Aston Villa have won their first Premier League game of the season. Getty
Aston Villa have won their first Premier League game of the season. Getty

Dean Smith admits Aston Villa must prove themselves in the Premier League again after their 2-0 win over Everton.

Wesley, the club's record £22 million (Dh99.2m) signing, opened his account before Anwar El Ghazi wrapped up the points in stoppage time.

The win was Villa's first victory back in the Premier League - and first since February 2016.

They were relegated from the Premier League for the first time three years ago and Smith knows, despite their top-flight pedigree and £130m summer spend, Villa need to re-establish themselves.

He said: "Two teams finished above us last season (Norwich and Sheffield United) and they're the new boys in the Premier League, whereas we finished below them and seem to be a more established Premier League team.

"I can see that because of the amount of money we have spent but we had to. We feel we've spent that well but it's going to take time to go and compete with a lot of established teams in this league.

"It was important to get the first win, we put in a performance which deserved the result."

Victory also ended Jack Grealish's record Premier League run of 20 straight defeats.

Smith added: "If you look at the total minutes he played in those 20 games there's probably four games in them. It's a monkey off everyone's back and he'll be as pleased as anyone."

Wesley opened the scoring after 21 minutes when he fired in across Jordan Pickford from Jota's neat pass.

It came against the run of play but Everton never recovered and wasted two late chances.

Alex Iwobi was denied a debut goal when he hit the post and Theo Walcott blazed an unmarked volley over with a minute left.

It came before El Ghazi rolled in from John McGinn's pass in injury time.

Everton missed the chance to go top of the early Premier League table after conceding their first goals of the season.

Updated: August 24, 2019 08:58 AM



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