Aston Villa survive relegation dogfight with late Grealish strike


Jack Grealish’s late goal, coupled with Watford’s 3-2 defeat at Arsenal, was ultimately good enough for Aston Villa to avoid relegation from the Premier League in the final day of action.

The battle to avoid the two remaining relegation places went to the wire as Aston Villa scored in the 84th minute, conceded a minute later, then held on for 1-1 draw at West Ham to survive.

Captain Jack Grealish scored Villa's goal in what could be his last game for his boyhood club.

"I'm pleased, proud and every adjective to go with it. It is a proud moment and feels better than going up (from the Championship) last season," Villa manager Dean Smith said.

"Condolences to Watford and Bournemouth. I can only imagine how they feel now."

Andriy Yarmolenko's late defelcted strike for West Ham threatened to disturb the relegation survival party, but Aston Villa held on to ensure their safety.

It caps an impressive end to the season for Dean Smith's side, who were seven points from safety two weeks ago but then put together their first four-game unbeaten run of 2019-20 to survive.

It was a game of few chances at the London Stadium, although the in-form Michail Antonio would have made Villa's afternoon a lot more tense had he not pushed a shot wide with just the goalkeeper to beat in the first half.

West Ham secured their own Premier League place for 2020-21 with a draw at Manchester United on Wednesday and end the season in 16th. 
Source AAP