Aston Villa are back in the big time after winning the Championship Play-Off Final against Derby County after three seasons in England's second division. Villa were founder members of the Premier League back in 1992/93 and one of the twelve teams that created the Football League when it all began in 1888/89. The Birmingham team would love to replicate what happened in that first-ever Premier League season. Villa finished second which is their best-ever Premier League finish.
- Stadium: Villa Park
- Stadium Capacity: 42,785
- Location: Birmingham
- Founded: 1874
- Nickname: The Villa, The Villans
- Manager: Dean Smith
- Kit: Claret shirts with blue sleeves, white shorts and blue socks
Aston Villa are one of the oldest clubs in English football, Villa were created in 1874, and are the oldest club in the current Premier League. Villa are also one of the most successful football teams, they have won the league title seven times, the FA Cup seven times and the League Cup five times, but the last time they won a cup was in 1996 and the last time they won the league title was in 1981. In 1982, Villa also won the European Cup (now the Champions League) when they beat Bayern Munich in the final.
Aston Villa play Premier League football in Birmingham, the UK's second-biggest city. If you want to find out more about the city, its culture and learn some English that is connected to the city then listen to our podcast all about Birmingham:
- Complete the lesson on Premier Skills English > Skills > Listen > Podcasts > English and the UK: Birmingham
Aston Villa have some very famous fans, some of these famous supporters include:
- Tom Hanks: The Hollywood movie star lives in New York (USA), not in Birmingham (UK). So why is he a supporter of Aston Villa? He says that watching an Aston Villa match in London, ‘I thought: “I like their colours and I like the name, so I’m gonna be an Aston Villa man from now on!”. Here is what Hanks said just before Aston VIlla played Derby County in the play-off final:
On Monday I will bleed claret and blue for Aston Villa. One match away for a return to the Premier League. Up the Villa! Hanx
— Tom Hanks (@tomhanks) May 25, 2019
- Prince William: The future king of England has been a Villa supporter ever since he saw his first live game (Aston Villa v Bolton Wanderers). And he’s a fan of the Villa fans too: ‘Villa supporters are dedicated – they are great because, although Villa don’t always win, they stay loyal,’ he says.
Why does Prince William support Aston Villa? Find out in this video from the BBC.
Three to Watch
Aston Villa have spent more money than any team that has just won promotion in the history of the Premier League. They have spent over £120 million during the transfer window and brought in twelve new players. Here are three players to watch out for in the Premier League this season:
Jack Grealish is one of the few survivors of the Aston Villa squad that was relegated from the Premier League in 2015/16 with one of the lowest points totals in Premier League history (17). Grealish who was born in Birmingham and is an Aston Villa fan is now the team's captain and arguably most important player. The attacking midfielder is still just 23 years old and will want to catch the eye of the England manager while keeping Villa in the Premier League this season.
Grealish played for the Republic of Ireland at youth level but decided to represent England at senior level.
Mahmoud Hassan (Trezeguet)
Villa have paid around £9 million to Kasimpasa in Turkey for the Egyptian midfielder, Trezeguet. The 24-year-old has been named in the Turkish League's team of the season for the last two years and will be a good addition to the Villa squad. He can play on either the right-wing or the left, has good dribbling skills and an eye for goal. His nickname 'Trezeguet' comes from an old coach in Egypt who thought Hassan played a similar style of football to David Trezeguet, the French World Cup winner.
Trezeguet will join the captain of the Egyptian national team at Villa Park: Ahmed Elmohamady.
Wesley has arrived at Villa Park from Club Brugges in Belgium and is Villa's record-signing at £22 million. The Brazilian striker won the Belgian League twice with Brugges and was named Belgium's Young Player of the Year in 2017/18. The 22-year-old has a strike rate of one goal every three matches but he is a strong physical striker with pace who will be the focal point of Villa's attack.
Aston Villa hold the record for most goals scored in a single season in the top division. Villa scored 128 goals in the 1930-31 season!
Last season Aston Villa won promotion from the Championship through the play-offs. They beat Derby County 2-1 in the final in what is often described as 'the richest match in football' due to the Premier League money that is on offer to the winner (estimated to be around £170 million this season). Villa finished in fifth place in the regular season.
Aston Villa have brought a lot of new players to the club over the summer and spent a lot of money. The Villa fans won't be expecting a relegation fight but the new players may take some time to settle in, which could mean a difficult first few months of the season. However, we believe that once the team starts firing, Villa could cause plenty of surprises this season.
Talk about Aston Villa
What do you know about the Villa? Are you an Aston Villa fan?
Do you know any of their players? Have you seen any Aston Villa matches?
Where do you think Aston Villa will finish in the Premier League this season? Do you agree with our prediction?