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Unai Emery lauds Aston Villa’s ‘mature’ mindset after FA Cup victory against Middlesborough

Aston Villa manager Unai Emery commended his team’s mindset following their 1-0 victory over Middlesbrough in the third-round FA Cup clash at the Riverside.

The Premier League contenders Aston Villa secured a spot in the fourth round with Matty Cash’s deflected goal in the 87th minute. Villa had opportunities in the first half through Jhon Duran and Leander Dendoncker, with threats in the early second half from John McGinn, Ezri Konsa, and Alex Moreno, who all came close from a series of corners.

Cash ultimately propelled them to the next round with a decisive goal from a short corner in the closing stages, and Emery lauded the team’s maturity in their pursuit of victory.

“We played big passions, being mature, I think we are growing up our mentality in matches like that,” Emery said.

“At the beginning we were favourite to win, but difficult to face each match.

“They prepared and tactically they played a very good match and even when they were keeping more possession on the transition they threatened us.

We played big passions, being mature, I think we are growing up our mentality in matches like that.

Emery details how they controlled the FA Cup clash against Carrick’s men

“We were always in control of the game and even the 15 minute, 20 minutes in the second half they were in that moment in control of the game better than us, after we had the three chances in the first 15 minutes of the second half.

“We were being passionate and trying to keep in our mind our gameplan and after that moment we reacted again, we pushed in the last minute because we took two or three chances and we scored one of them.”

After being eliminated by Stevenage in the third round of the FA Cup last season, Villa had discussions about their past experiences in the competition leading up to the clash against Boro, as disclosed by manager Unai Emery.

“We were speaking before the match about the FA Cup, a very historic cup competition, maybe the best cup competition in the world,” Emery added.

“We’re speaking about our players, how much they were successful in this competition – not a lot! Only Emiliano (Martinez) and Calum Chambers won with Arsenal.

“A long time Aston Villa was successful in this competition with seven titles.

“Of course we are here trying to do another step ahead in this club, trying to play facing different competition and trying to be contending to get something.”

Ethan Dempsey
Ethan Dempsey
Ethan is a lifelong football fan. When he is not obsessing over the Premier League games, Ethan likes to read fantasy tomes, watch football documentaries and waste hours upon hours on video games.
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