'Villa set traps for Norwich' - Former England captain blasts Canaries for sloppy display
PUBLISHED: 09:42 06 October 2019 | UPDATED: 09:42 06 October 2019
The Match of the Day pundits conducted a brutal evaluation of Norwich City's horrible 5-1 home defeat to Aston Villa.
The Canaries fell to the heaviest Carrow Road defeat of the Daniel Farke era and their consolation goal only came in the 87th minute after Josip Drmic showed good desire to take advantage of a poor back-pass from Villa defender Tyrone Mings.
Brazilian striker Wesley, a £22million summer signing from Club Brugge, scored twice in the first half but was denied his hat-trick by a fine double save from Michael McGovern, with Anwar El Ghazi having also headed against the crossbar for the visitors.
Classy goals from Jack Grealish, Conor Hourihane and substitute Douglas Luiz left the injury-hit Canaries shell-shocked though, before Drmic reduced the arrears slightly.
Former England and Newcastle striker Alan Shearer led the analysis on Match of the Day and said: "There was a definite game-plan from Dean Smith and his team to press high, commit men forward and they did that very, very well all afternoon.
"That's how they got their success. They invited Norwich to play out but not only that, they got men forward, got men in the box.
"Six men in the final third (analysing the first goal), quick passes, little touches, their movement was excellent, getting balls into the box like they did here and the big man in the box finishes it off very well, terrible defending from Norwich.
"Villa set traps for Norwich to invite them to play out and that's exactly what they did (analysing the second goal).
"Look at the men getting in the box once they had won the ball, it was a matter of getting the ball in the box, which they did, a lovely ball and he (Wesley) gets his second, should have his hat-trick but missed the penalty.
"Again Norwich trying to play out, they didn't have any variation in their game and Villa punished them for that. Hourihane runs in behind and again they get the men forward to get the penalty."
The MOTD highlights included a statistic that Villa - who had 12 shots on target - had won possession in City's defensive third on five occasions during the rout, a league high so far this season.
Shearer continued: "Still it was a constant from Norwich (losing possession) and they were punished all afternoon for it. Grealish, who was fantastic, got the goal that his performance deserved.
"The goals were almost the same. If the first one (Villa player) didn't win the ball, then another one will. They do it again and then Hourihane gets the goal that he deserved as well with a wonderful finish. It was a fantastic performance."
Gary Lineker offered up the Canaries' injury crisis as possible mitigation but that was given short shrift by fellow pundit Danny Murphy, who countered: "Sometimes game management can be better, it doesn't matter who you've got playing or what level you play.
"Sometimes you play out and that's fine, but others you have to mix it up, because the same mistakes kept happening."
- Match of the Day will be available on-demand on the BBC iPlayer from 7pm this evening