Villa cruised to a comfortable victory at the Laugardalsvöllur Stadium in Reykjavík to almost certainly book a place in the UEFA Cup first round.
14th Aug 2008

Villa cruised to a comfortable victory at the Laugardalsvöllur Stadium in Reykjavík to almost certainly book a place in the UEFA Cup first round.

Two goals inside the first seven minutes - from Gareth Barry and Ashley Young - set the tone for a comfortable evening against Icelandic league leaders FH Hafnarfjordur.

Gabby Agbonlahor and Martin Laursen completed the scoring and Villa could easily have had more.

Young broke down the left on three but saw his cross deflected behind for a corner.

Villa had the lead a minute later and, almost inevitably, it was Barry who slotted home as FH struggled to clear a Young cross.

Young made it 2-0 on seven, weaving his way in from the left as he met Barry's through ball and sending an angled drive past keeper Sigurdsson.

With Villa in control, Petrov's low drive from the edge of the box was blocked by Eiriksson on 10.

Villa skipper Laursen slid in to deny Gudnason on 16 as the home side launched a rare attack.

Harewood and Agbonlahor linked up to good effect on 19 but the latter's cross was deflected behind for a corner.

Friedel's first real touch in a Villa shirt came on 22 as the keeper easily gathered Gudnason's low cross from the right.

Gudnason headed over the bar as he met Valgardsson's left-wing cross on 28.

Vilhjalmsson blazed over when he should have reduced the arrears on 32 after Matthias Gudmindsson's close range effort had been blocked.

Gudnason then fired wide from the edge of the box as FH enjoyed a productive spell.

Young curled a right-foot effort over the bar on 35 as he met Barry's lay-off on the edge of the box.

Agbonlahor added Villa's third on 39, meeting Harewood's flick and powering his way into the box before slotting calmly past Sigurdsson.

Harewood was sent clear by Young on 44 and should have added to the scoreline but saw his low shot blocked by oncoming keeper Sigurdsson.

Matthias Gudmundsson reduced the arrears on the stroke of half-time, heading into the roof of the net as he met Eiriksson's cross from the left.

Sigurdsson raced off his line to deny Agbonlahor on 47 as Villa looked to effectively seal the tie with an early second-half goal.

Harewood broke down the right on 52 but his low near-post cross was intercepted by Sigurdsson.

At the other end Vidarson fired high over the bar from the edge of the box a minute later. Siim sent a right-foot free-kick straight at the Villa wall on 56.

Harewood went close seconds later but his angled drive was palmed behind by Sigurdsson.

Barry almost had his second of the night on 60 but headed onto the roof of the net from Young's left-wing cross.

Laursen added Villa's fourth on 64 with a trademark powerful header as he rose to meet Young's corner from the right.

Friedel had to be at his best to palm Asgeirsson's low angled drive past the post on 71.

Delfouneso cut in from the left on 85 but his low angled shot was comfortably gathered by Sigurdsson.

The home keeper then produced a better save to block Routledge's thunderous half-volley after good work down the left from Barry.

Barry powered his way in from the left in stopppage-time but was crowded out as he shaped up to shoot.

FH: Sigurdsson, Gudnason, BD Sverisson (booked 81), Vidarson, Siim, Valgardsson, Eiriksson, M.Gudmundsson, Vilhjalmsson, Neilsen (booked 8), T. Gudmundsson. Subs: Larusson, Asgeirsson (for Vidarson 64), BH Sverisson, Bjarnason, Saevarsson (for Eiriksson 75), Gardarsson (for Gudnason 75), Hallfredsson.

VILLA: Friedel, Gardner, Shorey, Laursen, Davies, Reo-Coker, Petrov, Barry (booked 55), Young, Agbonlahor, Harewood. Subs: Taylor, Osbourne, Delfouneso (for Agbonlahor 76), Knight, Salifou (for Petrov 66), Routledge, (for Young 72) Baker.

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