Bruma gives perfect riposte to Devine intervention

Aston Villa U18s 1 Chelsea U18s 1

The leaders' debate wasn't the only show in town in rain-lashed Birmingham last night.

The young hopefuls of Aston Villa and Chelsea produced several carefully rehearsed routines of their own in the first leg of the FA Youth Cup final at Villa Park, and plenty of gaffes to boot, but Jeffrey Bruma's emphatic riposte to a home goal by Daniel Devine means they will start next Tuesday's second leg on level terms.

Chelsea, for whom Jacopo Sala struck a post from long range in the closing minutes, will feel they have the quality to end a wait of nearly half a century to recapture the prestigious prize. Villa, though, are a well-organised outfit and drew warm applause at the end from a crowd that included the England duo of Gabriel Agbonlahor and Stewart Downing.

A taller, more powerful Chelsea side, striving to take the trophy to Stamford Bridge for the first time since Terry Venables and Ron Harris were fresh-faced, hair cream-topped teenagers in 1961, featured no fewer than eight nationalities, reflecting the club's ability to cast their net globally for the finest talent.

Dermot Drummy's side was drawn from Guinea-Bissau and Sierra Leone, from Italy, Germany and Sweden as well as from Slough and Gravesend – and it included one player, the Dutch defender Bruma, who has appeared in Carlo Ancelotti's senior team.

Villa, coached by the former Chelsea captain Tony McAndrew, contained a less exotic blend. The heart of the team were from the Midlands, with the only overseas element coming from two defenders from the Republic of Ireland and a Swiss goalkeeper, Benjamin Siegrist.

Fittingly, when Villa went ahead midway through the first half – either side of efforts against their woodwork from Marko Mitrovic and Josh McEachran – it was with a very British goal, albeit by an Irishman. Sam Walker, an orange-clad man-mountain in Chelsea's goal, punched away a corner. When another cross came in from Richard Blythe, Devine rose above a posse of blue shirts to perform the impressive feat of looping a header over the 6ft 5in Walker.

Aston Villa (4-4-2): Siegrist; Berry, Devine, Williams, Deeney; Carruthers, Nelson-Addy, Blythe, Roberts; Poyser (Darkin, 79), Simmonds (Halfhuid, 83). Substitutes not used Barrett (gk), Clifton, Johnson.

Chelsea (4-1-4-1): Walker; B Clifford, Ince, Bruma, Aziz ( Sampayo, 90); C Clifford (Lalkovic, 71); Sala, McEachran, Djaio, Tore; Mitrovic. Substitutes not used Haxhia (g), Saville, Rodgers.

Referee K Friend (Leicestershire).

News
A model of a Neanderthal man on display at the National Museum of Prehistory in Dordogne, France
science
News
Richard Dawkins dedicated his book 'The Greatest Show on Earth' to Josh Timonen
newsThat's Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome
Arts and Entertainment
Eye of the beholder? 'Concrete lasagne' Preston bus station
architectureWhich monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?
Extras
indybest
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey: ‘lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird’

'Lack of ethnic minority and black faces on TV is weird'

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey calls for immediate action to address the problem
Josephine Dickinson: 'A cochlear implant helped me to discover a new world of sound'

Josephine Dickinson: 'How I discovered a new world of sound'

After going deaf as a child, musician and poet Josephine Dickinson made do with a hearing aid for five decades. Then she had a cochlear implant - and everything changed
Greggs Google fail: Was the bakery's response to its logo mishap a stroke of marketing genius?

Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
Matthew McConaughey has been singing the praises of bumbags (shame he doesn't know how to wear one)

Matthew McConaughey sings the praises of bumbags

Shame he doesn't know how to wear one. Harriet Walker explains the dos and don'ts of fanny packs
7 best quadcopters and drones

Flying fun: 7 best quadcopters and drones

From state of the art devices with stabilised cameras to mini gadgets that can soar around the home, we take some flying objects for a spin
Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

Joey Barton: ‘I’ve been guilty of getting a bit irate’

The midfielder returned to the Premier League after two years last weekend. The controversial character had much to discuss after his first game back
Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

Andy Murray: I quit while I’m ahead too often

British No 1 knows his consistency as well as his fitness needs working on as he prepares for the US Open after a ‘very, very up and down’ year
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?