skip to content
The game is over, as the referee blows his whistle.
Header from deep inside the area by Steven Nzonzi goes harmlessly over the crossbar.
Unfair challenge on Martin Olsson by Nathan Delfouneso results in a free kick. Morten Gamst Pedersen restarts play with the free kick.
The ball is crossed by Morten Gamst Pedersen.
Corner taken left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen from the left by-line, save by Bradley Guzan.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Mame Diouf. Bradley Guzan restarts play with the free kick.
The ball is swung over by Barry Bannan, clearance by Christopher Samba.
Corner taken short by Ashley Young.
Centre by Eric Lichaj, Barry Bannan takes a shot. Blocked by Christopher Samba.
The official flags Nikola Kalinic offside. Indirect free kick taken by Bradley Guzan.
Effort from inside the area by Nathan Delfouneso misses to the left of the goal.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Nikola Kalinic by Curtis Davies. Morten Gamst Pedersen sends in a cross, Nikola Kalinic takes a shot. Save by Bradley Guzan.
Shot from just outside the box by Ashley Young misses to the right of the target.
Ashley Young decides to take a short corner.
Phil Jones takes a shot from a long way out clearing the bar.
Nikola Kalinic delivers the ball, clearance by Carlos Cuellar.
Nikola Kalinic joins the action as a substitute, replacing David Hoilett.
Ashley Young scores a goal from inside the six-yard box low into the middle of the goal. Aston Villa 3-1 Blackburn.Assist on the goal came from Emile Heskey.
(Aston Villa) makes a substitution, with Curtis Davies coming on for Ciaran Clark.
Ashley Young finds the back of the net with a headed goal from inside the six-yard box. Aston Villa 2-1 Blackburn.Assist on the goal came from Nathan Delfouneso.
Emile Heskey produces a cross, Christopher Samba manages to make a clearance.
The assistant referee signals for offside against David Hoilett. Indirect free kick taken by Bradley Guzan.
Corner taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen from the right by-line played to the near post, Christopher Samba takes a shot. Bradley Guzan makes a comfortable save.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Nathan Delfouneso by Martin Olsson. Free kick crossed by Barry Bannan, clearance made by Christopher Samba.
Handball by Ashley Young. Mark Bunn takes the direct free kick.
David Hoilett is caught offside. Carlos Cuellar takes the free kick.
Christopher Samba on for Ryan Nelsen.
Corner taken by Ashley Young from the right by-line played to the near post, Headed effort from deep inside the penalty area by Carlos Cuellar misses to the left of the goal.
Barry Bannan takes a shot. Brilliant save by Mark Bunn.
Shot from 35 yards by Steve Sidwell missed to the right of the target.
Mame Diouf comes on in place of Benjani Mwaruwari.
Barry Bannan produces a right-footed shot from outside the box and misses left.
Emile Heskey finds the back of the net with a goal from the edge of the penalty area to the bottom right corner of the goal. Aston Villa 1-1 Blackburn.Assist by Ashley Young.
Ashley Young is caught offside. Emile Heskey replaces John Carew. Free kick taken by Ryan Nelsen.
Shot on goal by Eric Lichaj from just inside the area goes over the target.
Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young from the right by-line, clearance made by Brett Emerton.
Short corner taken by Barry Bannan from the left by-line.
Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young from the right by-line, clearance by Pascal Chimbonda.
The ball is crossed by Morten Gamst Pedersen, save made by Bradley Guzan.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Brett Emerton. Ciaran Clark takes the free kick.
Morten Gamst Pedersen takes a shot. Bradley Guzan makes a brilliant save.
Outswinging corner taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen from the left by-line, clearance by Ciaran Clark.
A cross is delivered by Barry Bannan, clearance by Ryan Nelsen.
Benjani Mwaruwari is caught offside. Ciaran Clark takes the indirect free kick.
The match restarts for the second half.
The referee blows for half time.
Ryan Nelsen concedes a free kick for a foul on John Carew. Ashley Young shoots direct from the free kick.
The ball is delivered by Morten Gamst Pedersen, save made by Bradley Guzan.
Ashley Young concedes a free kick for a foul on Steven Nzonzi. Free kick taken by Mark Bunn.
Corner taken by Morten Gamst Pedersen from the left by-line played to the near post, clearance by Steve Sidwell.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Martin Olsson on Nathan Delfouneso. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Barry Bannan, Steven Nzonzi makes a clearance.
Steven Nzonzi has an effort at goal from outside the penalty box missing to the wide right of the goal.
The ball is crossed by Martin Olsson, Nigel Reo-Coker manages to make a clearance.
Foul by Steve Sidwell on David Hoilett, free kick awarded. Morten Gamst Pedersen takes the direct free kick.
Steve Sidwell concedes a free kick for a foul on Phil Jones. Morten Gamst Pedersen delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right channel, clearance by Carlos Cuellar.
Gael Givet grabs a goal from just outside the penalty box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Aston Villa 0-1 Blackburn.
Headed effort from deep inside the penalty area by John Carew goes harmlessly over the crossbar.
Gabriel Agbonlahor goes off and Nathan Delfouneso comes on.
A cross is delivered by Gabriel Agbonlahor, clearance made by Gael Givet.
Benjani Mwaruwari challenges Stephen Warnock unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Ciaran Clark.
Steve Sidwell has a drilled shot and went wide right of the goal.
Gael Givet fouled by John Carew, the ref awards a free kick. Mark Bunn restarts play with the free kick.
Martin Olsson sends in a cross.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Brett Emerton by Ashley Young. The free kick is swung in left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen, Stephen Warnock makes a clearance.
Phil Jones takes a shot. Bradley Guzan makes a fantastic save.
Gael Givet has a shot on goal from outside the area which misses left.
Centre by Morten Gamst Pedersen, Steve Sidwell manages to make a clearance.
The assistant referee signals for offside against Pascal Chimbonda. Stephen Warnock takes the free kick.
Ashley Young takes a shot. Mark Bunn makes a comfortable save.
Stephen Warnock challenges Brett Emerton unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick crossed left-footed by Morten Gamst Pedersen from right wing, comfortable save by Bradley Guzan.
Ryan Nelsen is penalised for handball and concedes a free kick. Ashley Young takes the free kick.
Ashley Young sends in a cross, John Carew takes a shot. Comfortable save by Mark Bunn.
The ball is swung over by Brett Emerton.
The ref blows the whistle to start the match.
New Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier will check on the fitness of central defender Richard Dunne before finalising his side for tomorrow's home Carling Cup clash with Blackburn.
Dunne had to be substituted at half-time during the weekend draw with visiting Bolton with a knee problem.
If he is ruled out, then Carlos Cuellar is a strong candidate to replace the former Manchester City player.
Winger Stewart Downing suffered a gashed shin against Bolton but is expected to be fit. Villa reached the final of the competition last season and knocked Blackburn out of the FA Cup and Carling Cup.
Houllier has fond memories of the League Cup as it provided him with his first major trophy with Liverpool in 2001. He intends to rotate some of the players against Blackburn but insists the competition will be taken seriously.
He said: "We will not be putting out a lesser side. It will be a good side. I will rotate some of the players and I will not be the only manager to have done that.
"The League Cup was the first trophy I won at Liverpool and, if you win five games, you are at Wembley.
"We all know the club is desperate for some silverware. We want that and to reach a high position in the league. That is what we are here for."
Houllier is delighted to be linking up with McAllister, who played under him at Liverpool, and Cowans, who won the European Cup with Villa in 1982.
He said: "I trust Gary and he knows how I want to play while Gordon is a hero here and I was pleased when he said he would like to work with me."
Martin Olsson is back in contention for Blackburn. Olsson, who scored against Villa in the semi-final of the competition last season, has been nursing a shoulder problem but is in line to return to the Rovers team.
Ryan Nelsen played in Saturday's 1-1 draw with Fulham having had a painkilling injection in his foot and will be rested, along with Vince Grella, who picked up a hamstring injury in that game.
David Dunn, Keith Andrews and Jason Roberts are also sidelined. Sam Allardyce admits that although the Barclays Premier League has to be Blackburn's priority this season, he is more excited by the prospect of a cup final than that of playing in Europe.
A push for European football may not be beyond Rovers this term if they can improve upon their 10th-placed finish in the 2009-10 campaign. Allardyce's side also reached the Carling Cup semi-finals, where they were beaten over two legs by Aston Villa.
The manager knows that progress in the league must be the club's main objective, but Allardyce would love to go one better in the cup and earn a trip to Wembley he feels would potentially be more special than any journey across the continent.
"My priority every year is about finishing as high as we can - Premier League first, those are my instructions from my bosses," Allardyce said.
"Anything else over and above that is a bonus, but I've always said from an ambition point of view and just from a pure football point of view, everybody wants to get to a cup final.
"For me, it's probably more exciting getting to a cup final than it is competing in Europe.
"If you get to a cup final you could be up there on the rostrum picking the trophy up and that stays with you for the rest of your life."
Houllier off to a winning start
Gerard Houllier marked his first match as Aston Villa boss with a 3-1 victory as two goals from Ashley Young and substitute Emile Heskey inspired a Carling Cup comeback against Blackburn.
Rovers were the better side in the first half and deservedly led at the interval through Gael Givet's stunning strike.
But Heskey levelled matters with his first touch after 59 minutes and then Young struck twice in quick succession to see Villa - last season's beaten finalists - reach the last 16.
Rovers must be sick of the sight of Villa after being knocked out of both domestic cup competitions by them last season.
Villa looked out of sorts in the first 45 minutes as Houllier opted for a 4-3-3 formation with John Carew flanked by Gabriel Agbonlahor and Young.
But they were transformed in the second half with Young in inspired form but midfielder Barry Bannan and defender Carlos Cuellar also made key contributions.
Villa Park was under half full for Houllier's first match at the helm as he made eight changes from the side which faced Bolton at the weekend.
Young forced the first save of the game out of Mark Bunn after turning past Morten Gamst Pedersen but the Rovers goalkeeper held onto his low 25-yard drive.
Rovers retaliated and Brad Guzan beat out Phil Jones' rising drive from a narrow angle after being found in space by Pedersen.
Villa midfielder Steve Sidwell was just off target with a long-range drive after being teed up by Bannan.
Villa suffered a setback after 31 minutes when Agbonlahor limped out of the action to be replaced by England Under-21 Nathan Delfouneso.
The England striker has been dogged by injury niggles during the early part of the campaign and he went straight to the dressing room for treatment.
Then after 34 minutes Rovers stunned Villa by taking the lead through Givet's powerful strike.
Pedersen's throw was headed out by Ciaran Clark to Givet whose powerful drive flew through a crowd of players into the corner of the net.
Blackburn were finding plenty of space and Steven Nzonzi was allowed to move forward unchallenged but his shot was wide of the mark.
Carew was brought down by Nelsen just outside the box in first half injury-time but Young curled the free-kick over the crossbar.
It needed a fine save from Guzan to prevent Blackburn from doubling their lead early in the second period.
Pedersen's long throw was cleared back to him and the resulting curling low shot from the edge of the box was turned aside by the United States goalkeeper.
Houllier brought on Emile Heskey, whom he signed for Liverpool from Leicester a decade ago, in place of Carew after 58 minutes.
It proved a masterstroke move with Heskey bringing Villa level with his first touch of the ball inside 60 seconds.
Young sent the former England player clear of the Rovers defence and he clinically beat Bunn with a low drive.
Villa were now in the ascendancy and Bunn finger-tipped away a powerful Bannan drive.
Then Cuellar should have done better when he headed wide when well placed from a Young corner.
But with 14 minutes left, Young put Villa ahead.
Delfouneso supplied the near-post cross and Young was able to head past Bunn.
Before the restart the injured Villa defender Ciaran Clark was replaced by Curtis Davies.
But within 60 seconds Young doubled Villa's lead.
Heskey won the ball on the right and surged into the Rovers box before delivering an inch-perfect cross which Young converted from close range.
Young came close to completing a hat-trick when his 20-yard drive was only just too high.
"West Ham v Reading"