Manchester United well beaten as Aston Villa make dream start under Unai Emery

Jacob Ramsey of Aston Villa scores their team's third goal during the Premier League match between Aston Villa and Manchester United at Villa Park.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Manchester United fell to their fourth defeat of the Premier League season as Aston Villa got off to a dream start under new manager Unai Emery with an impressive 3-1 win over Erik ten Hag's side on Sunday.

Villa had beaten Brentford 4-0 in their last home match after the sacking of Steven Gerrard, but were thrashed by the same scoreline away at Newcastle last weekend.

Against Manchester United, Emery's arrival clearly gave the team a lift and goals from Leon Bailey and Lucas Digne saw the home side fly into a 2-0 lead inside 11 minutes at Villa Park.

Cristiano Ronaldo was captaining United in the absence of Harry Maguire and Bruno Fernandes, but the visitors struggled to match Villa's intensity in the first half an hour.

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United did improve towards the end of the first half, though, and pulled a goal back right at the end of the opening period through Luke Shaw.

The timing of that strike looked like a psychological blow for the home side, but Villa came out strongly again in the second half and restored their two-goal advantage through Jacob Ramsey four minutes after the restart and completed a deserved win in front of their fans.

It is only Villa's fourth league victory of the season but lifts them to 13th place in the table.

United, meanwhile, missed the chance to draw level with Tottenham in fourth and stay in fifth spot after their first loss since the 6-3 defeat to Manchester City in early October.

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Weekend editor

Ben Hayward is Weekend Editor for FourFourTwo. A European football writer with over 15 years’ experience, he has covered games all over the world - including three World Cups, several Champions League finals, Euros, Copa América - and has spent much of that time in Spain. He currently divides his time between Barcelona and London.