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AVFC Player Ratings: Lackluster, tired-looking Aston Villa lose to Burnley

Aston Villa looked tired and lacked ideas during a disappointing performance in the final day of the 2014-15 Premier League season, losing to already-relegated Burnley 1-0 at Villa Park.

The goal was out of sight for Aston Villa against Burnley on Sunday.
The goal was out of sight for Aston Villa against Burnley on Sunday.
Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Aston Villa finished 17th in England's top flight this season, the team's worst finish since 1991 and its lowest ever finish in the Premier League.

So it was probably fitting that the club's worst top-flight season in the Premier League era ended with a stinker of a performance at Villa Park on Sunday with a 1-0 defeat to relegated Burnley.

Without further adieu, on a scale of 1 to 10 -- with 1 being the worst and 10 being the best, here are the Aston Villa player match ratings with analysis for the Premier League season finale defeat to Burnley on Sunday at Villa Park.

GK: Jed Steer (Huh?), Rating: 5

Surprise start. Wasn't noticeably terrible in the early going, although he didn't get off the ground great on Ings' header over him for the goal. Did make a fine save on Boyd with his chest to keep Villa in the match in the second half. My other analysis of Steer in his first Premier League start for Villa: He's left-footed, reads the game pretty well, and is an odd-looking fellow.

RB: Leandro Bacuna, Rating: 3

Pretty poor performance from Bacuna. Exposed in the air for the initial header by Ashley Barnes that led to Burnley's goal. And offensively, he was very poor with his crossing and taking on defenders. Did have one or two decent crosses to Benteke, but also scuffed several balls straight out of play or to no one at all. Subbed off for Alan Hutton.

CB: Ron Vlaar, Rating: 4

In most likely his last match for Aston Villa at Villa Park, Vlaar will be disappointed with how it went. He missed a great chance to equalize early, firing just wide of the top corner. Booked for a clumsy challenge early in the second half, and didn't exactly do anything to assure himself of a starting spot in the FA Cup Final.

CB: Nathan Baker, Rating: 6

So Baker had quite an odd day. Lost a header to Danny Ings for Burnley's winner. But improved immensely in the second half, winning more aerial duels and helping Villa regain possession and control the match more as well. Finished with an incredible 16 clearances and 97-percent passing, including two chances created. All the more impressive, Baker achieved those stats when his left back was often 50 yards away from him when Burnley countered, which couldn't have been a fun experience for a central defender.

LB: Charles N'Zogbia, Rating: 3

His positioning as Aston Villa's "left back" for the day was downright hilarious (see Nathan Baker's analysis above). Just wandered all over the pitch, but fortunately his lack of defensive play didn't really hurt Villa because Burnley sat back so deep after scoring and Baker dealt with the problems when the Clarets did attack. Wonderful strike with 20 minutes left, showing what he always has in his locker with that left boot. Will be interesting to see what Sherwood does with this position in the FA Cup Final.

RCM: Tom Cleverley, Rating: 4

Another tired-looking performance from Cleverley, whose work rate seems to be a catalyst for how the Villa midfield will play in any given match. Tom's play was reminiscent of the Paul Lambert days with slow passing, fruitless closing down, and nothing creative offensively. Glad he was subbed off, which will hopefully save his legs a bit for Wembley on Saturday.

CDM: Ashley Westwood, Rating: 4

Tough match to judge Westwood on because Burnley offered so little in the midfield, allowing Villa to posses the ball until they reached the visitors' penalty area. Did well enough as always on the ball. Struck a great volley on target at the end of the first half, but failed to produce anything else notable going forward.

LCM: Fabian Delph, Rating: 5

In a mediocre first half, Delph's passing stood out for the home side as he constantly tried to drag his team forward. Finished with 89-percent passing, four chances created and five successful take-ons. Had a fine strike palmed away by Heaton in the second half, but wore down and was another Villa player to show tiredness -- highlighted by his inability to make an overlapping run for Grealish in the final 15 minutes.

CAM: Jack Grealish, Rating: 6

Villa's most sprightly player, as he should be consider his lack of playing time throughout the season compared to the other players. Always willing to get on the ball and looking to make something happen, but just crowded out by a swarm of Burnley players on numerous occasions. Four successful take-ons and 96-percent passing are still very good numbers for Jack, but I would really like to see Grealish look to shoot more often as his progression continues next season.

ST: Gabriel Agbonlahor, Rating: 5

Really the only Villa player that looked up for it in the first half, chasing lost causes and trying to make runs to move Villa up the pitch. Had his best chance saved by the feet of the unbeatable Tom Heaton early in the second half. Not his type of match, as Gabby doesn't thrive when the opponents sit deep and defend like Burnley did on Sunday, but he still played alright.

ST: Christian Benteke, Rating: 4

Lackluster afternoon from the Belgian. Had a couple half-decent chances, but his lack of involvement in the build-up play was what was really disappointing. Like Cleverley's performance, this was more like the Paul Lambert version of Benteke than what we've seen recently. Only four aerial duels won and three shots attempted? C'mon, Christian. Needs to do a lot more at Wembley.


Scott Sinclair, Alan Hutton: No Rating

For the second consecutive week, none of the Aston Villa substitutes did anything of note. But why would Sherwood not use his third sub? This game essentially meant nothing, so why not play Callum Robinson or Andi Weimann in the second half at least? Strange decision for me.


Throughout the FA Cup final week, we're raising money for the Villa Rockets Powerchair Football club. With your help we can reach £5,000 and get them a new powerchair! Read about the club and our effort here, or simply click here to donate and help us reach our goal! And remember, if you donate any amount, you can enter to win a free Fabian Delph t-shirtfrom The Art of Football!