Goals from Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings earned Aston Villa a comfortable 2-0 win over Norwich at Villa Park – a result that relegates Dean Smith’s side after Burnley beat Watford at Vicarage Road.
Watkins collected a raking ball from Ings after Brandon Williams’ slip to open the scoring five minutes before the break, slamming home into the roof of Tim Krul’s net via a slight deflection.
The result was put beyond doubt in stoppage time when Ings got himself back onside to swivel and fire into the corner – Krul having kept out Jacob Ramsey’s shot from a tight angle moments before.
It was a deserved victory for Villa, who in truth didn’t ever need to get out of second gear. Steven Gerrard’s side were the better team, though both goalkeepers were tested, and they had more pace and urgency about their play throughout the game.
Krul’s excellent save from Leon Bailey kept the scores level in the first 20 minutes before Emiliano Martinez made a cracking save of his own – tipping Milot Rashica’s fizzing drive over the crossbar.
The deadlock was broken by Watkins after he latched onto substitute Ings’ long ball, and he profited from Williams’ slip to score his ninth goal of the season.
Clear-cut chances were at a premium thereafter, with the game finally put to bed by Ings in injury-time – just his seventh goal of another injury-hit campaign.