Aston Villa player ratings v Crystal Palace: Ayew and others superb

Villa Park 6

A Wayne Hennessey howler saw Joleon Lescott head home to secure Remi Garde his first victory in charge of the club.

Mark Bunn 6/10 – Handed his league debut for the club with Guzan dropped but forced into just one straightforward save.

Leandro Bacuna 8/10 – Known more for his attacking qualities but was fantastic in defence for the full 90 minutes. Even if Micah Richards is fit to start on the weekend, the Dutchman deserves to keep his place.

Jores Okore 8/10 – Again showed why he’s Villa’s best centre-back when fully fit with a rock solid performance in the heart of defence. He and Lescott seem to be developing a fantastic rapport.

Joleon Lescott 8.5/10 – Quickly made fans forget “Gumgate” by heading home the 58th-minute winner, as well as recording three tackles, four interceptions and six clearances to help preserve the clean sheet.

Aly Cissokho 7.5/10 – Strong at the back and served up several teasing crosses at the other end of the pitch. Recalling him from Porto is looking like a wise decision so far.

Ashley Westwood 7/10 – Did what was asked of him with a huge defensive shift to help secure the three points. His best performance of the season.

Idrissa Gana 7.5/10 – Finally looked like the player from his early Villa displays again, as he buzzed around the pitch with purpose and never shirked a challenge.

Jordan Veretout 7.5/10 – Combined creativity with bags full of energy in the centre of the park, while also setting up Lescott’s goal with a pinpoint corner.

Carles Gil 7/10 – Endured plenty of rough treatment from the Palace players but still managed to flash several glimpses of brilliance. If he can just get a bit stronger on the ball, he’ll be worth his weight in gold.

Jordan Ayew 9/10 – Worked his socks off and caused constant problems for the Palace defence with his pace, skill and movement. An excellent all-round performance.

Libor Kozak 7/10 – Making his first Premier League start since December 2013, the Czech striker battled his heart out to help get Villa a precious win. He still needs to find his shooting boots after such a long time out of the first-team picture, but he certainly looked like a better option than Rudy Gestede.

SUBSTITUTES

Ciaran Clark (Gil 90) N/A – A late change to kill some time.

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