Express & Star

Aston Villa will take cautious approach with defensive star

Unai Emery confirmed Pau Torres will undergo a scan after complaining of pain in his leg during Saturday’s 4-2 in over Nottingham Forest.


The defender, recently returned from two months out with an ankle injury, was withdrawn at half-time due having complained of discomfort in a leg muscle.

Emery is hopeful the problem is not too serious and explained: “He had a small pain, not an injury at the beginning, or hopefully not. We decided not to take a risk with him.

“It was something in his muscle, the back of the leg. He was progressively feeling worse but not feeling like it was an injury.

“We will wait and scan him. I am thinking it is not really an injury because he finished the first half. But we were thinking there was a risk and we decided to stop him.”

Torres’ injury was the only blight on an otherwise excellent day for Villa, who opened up a five-point cushion in the top four and saw sixth-placed Manchester United lost at home to Fulham.

Ollie Watkins’ fifth goal in as many Premier League games and a Douglas Luiz brace appeared to have Emery’s men cruising.

And though Forest struck twice quickly through Moussa Niakhate and Morgan Gibbs-White, Leon Bailey bagged his eighth league goal of the season to seal the win.

Victory snapped a three-match home losing run for Villa and Emery said: “After we lost matches at home, we could have lost a little bit our confidence and we could lose something in our structure tactically.

“But we were planning the same, like we played against Newcastle even losing against Manchester United.

“We reacted very well in Sheffield and Fulham and today was the match, we were focusing in confirmation of reacting well at home.”