Aston Villa team-mates Anwar El Ghazi and Tyrone Mings clashed in the first half

Aston Villa moved out of the relegation zone by drawing against a West Ham side who finished with 10 men after Arthur Masuaku’s red card.

Masuaku was dismissed with 23 minutes left after picking up two bookings.

Before that, the game’s major talking point saw Anwar El Ghazi clash heads with Villa team-mate Tyrone Mings, although no action was taken.

Villa’s John McGinn had plenty of the game’s better chances, forcing Lukasz Fabianski into two saves.

Collisions and red cards the name of the game

Arthur Masuaku was shown a yellow card in each half

There were plenty of big hits and tackles, more so than major goalscoring opportunities.

The major incident in the first half involved two Villa players – Mings was furious with El Ghazi’s lack of defensive help and started shouting in his face.

At that moment, Netherlands winger El Ghazi nudged his head into Mings’ face. He could have been sent off, but referee Mike Dean and the video assistant referee decided the contact was not sufficient to produce a red card.

Elsewhere, the physios were busy, as Hammers keeper Lukasz Fabianski flattened El Ghazi as he punched a cross clear, and McGinn hurt himself after tackling Sebastien Haller when Angelo Ogbonna accidentally stood on him.

There were five yellow cards in the game, and two of them landed to Masuaku – one in each half. The first was more straightforward, with a heavy challenge on Frederic Guilbert, who needed treatment.

But the second tackle to produce the red card – Dean’s 102nd as a Premier League official – was a tackle on substitute Ahmed Elmohamady, who went down easily.

BBC Radio 5 Live pundit Chris Sutton was in no doubt that it was the right decision, calling the tackle “reckless and brainless”.

Both sides miss decisive touch

Both sides had grand plans for a win – Villa had the opportunity to move two points clear of the bottom three, while West Ham could have gone third in the table.

West Ham had more chances, but Villa had the better ones.

The best opening probably fell to Villa striker Wesley, who headed wide from about six yards out after a fine Jack Grealish cross.

McGinn was his usual classy self and went close with several shots from outside the box.

Both sides had frantic attacks late on, but neither could find the decisive touch.

West Ham’s much-hyped attacking quartet of Haller, Andriy Yarmolenko, Manuel Lanzini and Felipe Anderson struggled to create many opportunities.

Mark Noble’s seventh-minute snap shot, which was straight at goalkeeper Tom Heaton, proved to be their only shot on target.

Villa move out of the bottom three on goal difference, while West Ham are ninth.

More to follow.



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