Aston Villa continued their fine form in the Sky Bet Championship on Saturday afternoon, with Dean Smith’s side edging past Bristol City at Villa Park.
Smith’s side have found some outstanding form since the beginning of March, with Saturday’s success an eighth consecutive league win.
A Tammy Abraham penalty opened the scoring on the 55th minute, with Conor Hourihane then extending that lead little over 10 minutes later.
Famara Diedhiou pulled a goal back to make things a little more tense, but Villa held onto their lead and took another stride towards play-off football.
We are seeing the Villans play some great football at the moment and there are plenty of people backing Smith’s side to win promotion given their recent run of results.
After this latest victory, we take a look at three things we learnt about Villa…
They can do it without Grealish
A run of seven consecutive victories prior to Saturday came off the back of Jack Grealish’s return to the first-team.
He’d been absolutely superb for Villa, but was missing against the Robins because of illness.
However, it did not halt Villa’s progress, with the side producing a good display to win.
Doing it without him might be something they have to get used to after the summer.
Abraham’s confidence could be crucial
During the week we saw Tammy Abraham miss a penalty in the win over Rotherham.
He made no such mistakes this weekend from the spot – dusting himself down and putting Villa ahead against one of his former employers.
That confidence in a striker is crucial at any level, particularly when you’re chasing promotion.
Keeping him in the groove is going to be big heading into a potential play-off campaign.
The defensive improvement stretches beyond Mings
Alongside Grealish, Tyrone Mings was missing due to suspension.
As much as Grealish has improved Villa, Mings’ effort in defence can’t be overlooked.
Without him you might’ve expected Villa to struggle, but they didn’t.
He’s a key part of the side, but like Grealish, they are proving they can get results even without him.