You know it’s been a dull game when the most dramatic moment of the afternoon occurs during the half-time entertainment.
The outcome of the race between two fans tasked with pushing a pair of giant footballs around an obstacle course was in doubt until the final moments – which is more than you can say for the main spectacle.
A goal-less draw looked on the cards long before referee Mark Clattenburg blew his whistle for the final time.
Aside from a couple of Gabriel Agbonlahor efforts, one saved by Hull keeper Allan McGregor and the other placed just wide of the post, neither side looked like scoring in the 90 minutes.
There were undoubtedly positives for both sides, most notably for Villa a second clean sheet in three games.
But there were only negatives for the 24,396 who forked out to watch in person.
If there is such thing as a Premier League advertiser’s dream, then this must have been tantamount to a nightmare. The only saving grace is it wasn’t televised.
It’s doubtful Paul Lambert will care and nor should he. His primary task is to see Villa pick up points – not to entertain – and it’s true to say his side have been involved in more than their fair share of drama since he took the reins last year. Drab 0-0s, by and large, are not his stock in trade.
What will perhaps be most pleasing for the Villa chief, aside from the clean sheet, was the way in which it was attained.
Villa never looked like conceding, thanks in large part to the performances of central defensive duo Ron Vlaar and Ciaran Clark. The latter was particularly impressive, quick to sense danger and remained composed throughout.
This is exactly the type of game Villa have made a habit of losing over the past three years and it is worth pointing out Hull remain stubborn and unbeaten opponents at home.
Leandro Bacuna, employed as a right-back as Lambert reverted to a 4-3-3 formation, also impressed. Going forward he was a handful but showed he can defend too, most notably intervening to cut out an Ahmed Elmohamady cross which looked destined to provide Stephen Quinn with a tap-in.
Where Villa struggled was in the final third – with the spectre of Christian Benteke looming large.
Statistically, Villa appear to have coped without the big Belgian. Since he went off injured in the early stages at Norwich, they have picked up seven points from three games and beaten Manchester City.
But if there was ever a game they needed him, it was this one.
It is far too early in Libor Kozak’s Villa career to make any judgements but it was clear from this evidence he is still adjusting to the pace of the Premier League. The Czech was constantly beaten in the air by former Villa man Curtis Davies and his poor control killed the momentum in a couple of promising attacks.
Perhaps of bigger concern for Lambert is the form of Andreas Weimann. Last week’s winner against Manchester City temporarily lifted the focus on what has until now been a below-par season for the Austrian. At Hull nothing seemed to go right for him as passes constantly went astray and he was unable to take advantage in the first half when McGregor dropped a free-kick at his feet near the edge of the box.
That was during a first period when Villa dominated possession but struggled to do anything incisive with it.
Brad Guzan in the visiting goal was not tested until a Tom Huddlestone drive in first-half stoppage time, but might have been were it not for excellent defensive work from Bacuna and then Vlaar. Both were on hand to cut out dangerous Elmohamady crosses within the space of a few minutes – the second of which the Villa skipper managed to get the slightest of touches to take it away from the waiting Danny Graham.
Both of those moments came just before Agbonlahor forced McGregor into the only save of note in 90 minutes, advancing into the box and firing in a left-footed shot which the Scottish keeper pushed behind diving to his left.
That was it in terms of chances at either end until Agbonlahor was presented with a golden opportunity ten minutes into the second period. Bacuna was the architect, breezing past Quinn down the right flank before feeding Weimann, whose pull-back Agbonlahor struck first time inches wide of the post.
Karim El Ahmadi tested McGregor again with a fierce shot from distance and saw another low effort comfortably kept out late on, with substitute Aleksander Tonev also driving a shot wide in stoppage time. Elmohamady, whose crossing became increasingly erratic as the game wore on, shot wide for the hosts.
But it was difficult to claim either side deserved a winner in a game which never got going.
For match pictures, click here