Fabian Delph's goal late in the second half secured the win for Villa, but Chelsea's second half implosion will be of concern to Blues fans, who witnessed both Willian and Ramires pick up red cards, leaving Chelsea with just nine men on the field by the end of the game, whilst manager Jose Mourinho also received his marching orders for protesting late on.
The Blues loss will give hope to Manchester City that they can now pile the pressure on Mourinho's side, after Manuel Pellegrini's men clinched a 2-0 win over Hull City earlier today. Chelsea remain top of the Premier League table, but sit just six points ahead of City - who have three games in hand on the West London club.
It was a below par display from many Chelsea players, but much of the blame for the defeat fell at the feet of referee Chris Foy, who dismissed two Chelsea players and the manager - adding to a theory that Foy regularly sends players off whenever he is refereeing Chelsea games.
But aside from Foy, a number of players took criticism for their displays on the night, including Ramires, Branislav Ivanovic and Nemanja Matic, whilst some fans called for the inclusion of January signing Mohamed Salah on a night where Chelsea were shocked by Paul Lambert's side.
David luiz in midfield against arsenal i suppose. But ramires and willian will be sorely missed. #CFC— Specifically Blue (@soovinho) March 15, 2014
For me neither Ramires or Ivanovic are good enough for Chelsea, too often a liability! All our goals conceded come from Ivanovic's side #CFC— Harry (@Harry_Hazard) March 15, 2014
If anyone didn't expect us to drop any points between now and the end of the year they were deluded. Long way to go. #cfc— The Second Coming (@DanTheMan1118) March 15, 2014
Well, at least I know Lampard's playing next weekend. And I think it's about time we gave Salah a chance #CFC— Ebuka Bukkie™ Okolo (@PstBukkie) March 15, 2014
Unbelievable implosion 2nd half but that result had been coming. U can't expect to win every time when you keep starting games so badly #cfc— Simon Ansell (@simonansell) March 15, 2014
We had plenty of the ball, some nice play but poor forward movement. Too many offsides, not enough shots when players had space. #CFC— Tom (@didierdogbaa) March 15, 2014
Bad performance from the team, our manager & the almighty Chris Foy. It's not over. Yet. #CFC— Mr. Shala (@shPlussh) March 15, 2014
Playing with 10 men all year surprised we're still even if with a chance, if we had a goal scorer we would have won it by now #CFC— Brad Attwood (@battwood24) March 15, 2014
Take Foy out of it for a minute and all credit to Villa who denied us today. We did not look sharp and didn't deserve win #CFC— JAMES-CFC (@JK_CFC3) March 15, 2014