Wednesday 22 August 2012
Aston Villa their Barclays U21 Premier League campaign off to a promising start with a comfortable 3-0 win over Stoke City.
First-team manager Paul Lambert watched on at Bodymoor Heath as second-half goals from Michael Drennan, Daniel Johnson and Josh Barton earned the home side three points.
Villa edged a tight first period but headed into the break with the score at 0-0.
Lambert offered the players some words of advice at half-time and his pep-talk paid dividends as Villa instantly stepped up things.
Within three minutes of the restart, Drennan headed in a left-wing cross from Stevens to open the scoring and the Irish forward set up the second for captain Johnson a quarter of an hour later.
Barton confirmed Stoke’s second successive defeat in the competition with a fine solo effort 12 minutes before the end.