Aston Villa player ratings v Rotherham United: Rudy Gestede and Jack Grealish shine

Aston Villa's Rudy Gestede celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates

A Gestede brace and a goal from Grealish secured Roberto Di Matteo's men a 3-0 victory over the Millers in their first home game of the season on Saturday.

Aston Villa's Rudy Gestede celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates

Pierluigi Gollini 6/10 – Rarely troubled, only needing to make one clear save on the day.

Leandro Bacuna 7.5/10 – The versatile Dutchman proved a significant defensive upgrade over Alan Hutton and served up a handful of excellent deliveries over the course of the match. His best performance for the club in some time.

Tommy Elphick 7/10 – The new skipper handled whatever Rotherham threw at him with relative ease and was a big vocal presence on the backline throughout the encounter.

James Chester 7/10 – Thrust straight into the line-up just 24 hours after completing his move from West Bromwich Albion, the Wales international struck up an immediate rapport with Elphick in the heart of the defence. Hard to recall him putting a foot wrong all afternoon.

Aly Cissokho 7.5/10 – After struggling badly in the opening day defeat at Sheffield Wednesday, the French full-back put in a much-improved performance against Alan Stubbs’ side. He was excellent going forward, setting up Gestede’s first goal with a great cross, and even came close to scoring beforehand with a fierce shot that forced Millers goalkeeper Lee Camp into a fine save.

Aaron Tshibola 7.5/10 – A hugely encouraging home debut for the 21-year-old summer signing from Reading. He worked his socks off in the centre of the park, winning possession to help create the opening goal, and managed to make some impressive runs into the opposition area. He does still need to work on his shooting, though, after squandering a couple of decent chances during the second half.

Ashley Westwood 7/10 – Defensively sound next to Tshibola and extremely tidy in possession, completing a match-leading 38 of his 42 passes – four of which were long balls.

Jordan Ayew 7/10 – Was involved in the build-up to both of Gestede’s goals and caused some real problems for the visitors with his direct running. His end product could have been better, though.

Rotherham United's Jake Forster-Caskey and Aston Villa's Jordan Ayew in action

Jack Grealish 8.5/10 – The 20-year-old playmaker reminded everyone of his talent with a superb display, helping set up Gestede’s 21st-minute opener before going on to score his first goal at Villa Park during the close stages following a determined run through the Rotherham defence.

Ross McCormack 7/10 – Didn’t manage to open his Villa account but showed his creative side around the opposition area and provided the assist for Gestede’s second goal on the stroke of half-time.

Rudy Gestede 9/10 – A dominant presence up top. As well as netting a first-half brace, the towering front man won 15 aerial duels and teed up Grealish for his goal with a clever flick-on. Fans will hope it's a sign of things to come.

Aston Villa's Rudy Gestede scores their second goal


Adama Traore (Ayew 74) 6/10 – Managed to get a shot off following one of his trademark runs but didn’t see the ball much otherwise.

Gary Gardner (McCormack 85) N/A – Not on long enough to make a real impact.

Andre Green (Grealish 91) N/A

Aston Villa manager Roberto Di Matteo

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