, Jack Grealish full of praise for Aston Villa teammates after play-off victory over West Brom

Jack Grealish full of praise for Aston Villa teammates after play-off victory over West Brom

Aston Villa playmaker Jack Grealish had plenty of praise for his teammates after he captained Dean Smith’s side to a 2-1 win over West Brom in the play-off first leg at Villa Park on Saturday afternoon.

Aston Villa went 1-0 down when West Brom’s top scorer Dwight Gayle pounced on a poor touch from Glenn Whelan. The Baggies remained in front until the 75th minute, when Conor Hourihane fired Villa ahead.

After good work from Jack Grealish, he laid it off to the second-half substitute, who made no mistake.

Grealish was involved once again when he was fouled by Kieran Gibbs with 79 minutes on the clock, giving Villa the chance to go ahead for the first time in the tie. Tammy Abraham made no mistake from 12 yards to put Villa in the driving seat.

Dwight Gayle was sent off late on after picking up a second yellow card, and he will now miss the second leg of the play-off semi-final.

Speaking to the Aston Villa club website after the match, Grealish spoke of the confidence he has in the players around him, praising Hourihane for his impact off the bench.

“Every time I come on to the pitch, I look at the players around me and think we’re going to win,” the skipper said.

“Even if we go a goal down or a man down, I always think we’re going to win. 

“When you’ve quality like Conor Hourihane coming off the bench, it says something. His goal speaks for itself today. Overall, it was a good win. Now it’s on to Tuesday. It’s like last time. We won at Middlesbrough and then we came back here to Villa Park and we had another tough game. 

“West Brom are a great side. We know when we go to the Hawthorns on Tuesday, it’s going to be a hostile atmosphere and a tough game. 

“But I do always look at the players around me and feel we can win every game so hopefully we can do that and get ourselves back to Wembley.”

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