We'll be along with a more in-depth recap later, but for right now let's just revel in the pure joy of what we just saw. On a day when Tim Sherwood picked a seemingly irredeemable lineup for Aston Villa to take on West Bromwich Albion, somehow it all worked out. Gabby Agbonlahor, who has been terrible lately, had his best match in ages. He could have very easily had a hat trick in the first half. The first attempt was milimetres short (but probably never should have been a goal if it weren't for Foster's bad keeping). The actual goal was vintage Gabby: great first touch, better second touch, and made possible by just enough pace. The third could have easily seen a penalty given to Foster as he prevented Gabby from finishing it out without ever touching the goal.
And in the dying seconds of the half, Fabian Delph clanged one off of the post. Stop and think about this. Villa were dominant in the half and could have easily gone into the tunnel up 4-0 instead of 1-0. That's weird.
In another oddity, the second half didn't see the club (immediately) fall flat. I felt like they still dominated the match, but stupid defending on a West Brom corner made it 1-1 and it felt as if we'd rue the missed chances of the first half.
But then, in literally the last minute of stoppage, Fabian Delph took a speculative 35 yard shot. But it had power and it was on target and it forced a save that caused mayhem in the West Brom box. Villa got the ball on the edge and put it in again. When it seemed as if the Baggies would clear it out, Foster inexplicably came charging at Matt Lowton. He missed the ball and Villa got their first penalty of the year. And from there, Christian Benteke did this:
And that's how Aston Villa won the first of two derby matches in five days. When the FA Cup draw against WBA was announced, I would have told you that I wanted that win more. But coming into this week, it was clear that today was more important. With the huge boost, and the absolutely demoralizing way it happened to the Baggies, we could still see both.
But for now. Go and drink. And be merry. And hug everyone. Because Aston. Villa. WON.