tremendous history making performance by the Sky Blues heroes all!
and John Aloisi scored two goals apiece to bring City their first ever league victory at
Aston Villa, former Sky Blue Dion Dublin scored for Villa and right at the death 16 year
old Gary McSheffrey became the youngest player for years to play for City.
It was an afternoon of joyous celebration for the Sky Blue fans. The Villa faithful, so
used to watching their team collect three easy points off their near neighbours, sat in
There were fifteen minutes to go when those wearing the claret and blue began to stream
out of Villa Park.
Many waved their arms dismissively at the pitch where their side was being given a
A stranger would have thought it was Coventry who were chasing championship honours.
Coventry began where they had left off against Manchester United only this time their
efforts were rewarded by goals. They had better players than Villa in every area of the
pitch, they had more attitude, more resilience and definitely more finishing
It would have been fitting if Aloisi or Boateng could have scored a hat-trick and it
would certainly have been well deserved if Darren Huckerby had got on the scoresheet. He
ran Villa ragged and was desperately unlucky not to win a penalty in the first half.
There was drama even before kick off when Citys manager Gordon Strachan produced
two relatively unknown substitutes out of his magicians hat.
Noel Whelan (bruised shoulder), Stephano Gioacchini (hamstring) and veteran goalkeeper
Steve Ogrizovic (knee) were out of action and Strachan introduced youth team player Gary
McSheffrey on to the bench along with youth goalkeeper Chris Kirkland.
In stoppage time Strachan ordered McSheffrey to strip off his tracksuit and stood with
his arm around the youngsters shoulders trying to attract the attention of referee
The youngster got on to the pitch for just 30 seconds before the final whistle blew and
then ran to every player on both teams to shake their hands.
City thoroughly deserved to win both halves of this match. Aloisi set them on the way
in the 24th minute when he skipped past Gareth Southgate and slid the ball
inside the far post.
Two minutes later City should have had a penalty when Southgate scythed down Huckerby
from behind but Mr Rennie unaccountably waved aside the protests.
Villa, inevitably made more of a fist of the second half, but still they did not screw
on the pressure and it was Coventry who repeatedly found a way to goal.
Boateng got the second in the 51st minute when he squeezed the ball home
from the narrowest of angles but Citys joy was shortlived.
Julian Joachim went down in the penalty area and Mr Rennie this time pointed to the
spot. There was a huge roar of relief from Villas fans when Dublin crashed home the
spot kick his first goal since mid-December and for a time Citys defence
underwent a thorough examination.
But they were lethal on the break and from Steve Froggatts 73rd minute free-kick
Aloisi finished powerfully from close range.
At this point Villas fans began their mass exodus but City were not finished. In
another breakout in the 84th minute McAllister set Boateng free and as
goalkeeper Michael Oakes ran out of his area the City man coolly lobbed him and into the
The perfect result for next Saturdays match against fellow strugglers Charlton
Athletic at Highfield Road.
Oakes; Wright, Southgate, Watson (Barry 44 mins), Taylor (Draper 28 mins, Collymore 56
mins), Merson, Joachim, Dublin, Grayson, Hendrie, Scimeca
Subs not used: Bosnich, Samuel
Hedman; Nilsson, Burrows, Williams, Shaw, Boateng, McAllister, Telfer, Froggatt, Huckerby
(McSheffrey 89 mins), Aloisi
Subs not used: Kirkland, Konjic, Soltvedt, Edworthy,
GOALS: Aloisi (24, 73 mins), Boateng (51, 84 mins)
Aston Villa Grayson (foul, 47 mins), Barry (dissent, 48 mins), Southgate (foul,
61 mins), Dublin (foul, 88 mins)
Coventry Williams (foul, 31 mins), Aloisi (dissent, 56 mins)
REFEREE: Uriah Rennie (Sheffield)