Joe Bennett scored late in the first half as Aston Villa finished its Texas tour with a 1-0 win over the Houston Dynamo in the BBVA Compass Dynamo Charities Cup on Saturday.
The Dynamo are 3-3-0 all-time in the BBVA Compass Charities Cup, an annual friendly match between the Dynamo and a prominent international opponent benefitting Dynamo Charities.
Proceeds from the match will benefit the “Building a Better Houston” initiative, a campaign led by Dynamo Charities and BBVA Compass to make improvements in Houston’s East End.
Aston Villa returns to England with two wins in two games on its Texas tour after a 2-0 victory at FC Dallas on Wednesday.
Aston Villa’s winning goal began from a corner kick in the 41th minute. Charles N’Zogbia’s set piece was collected at the back edge of the penalty area by Andreas Weimann, who drove a pinpoint cross back in front of goal. Bennett rose and headed into the net from eight yards for the winning goal.
Houston’s best scoring chance in the first half arrived in the 11th minute. Brad Davis delivered a trademark free kick and Jermaine Taylor beat his man to the ball inside the penalty area but couldn’t keep his shot on target from ten yards.
Davis continued a strong first half with a free kick five minutes later that was handled by Aston Villa goalkeeper Jed Steer. Then, Davis used his right foot from a tight angle for a firm shot that forced a strong diving save from Steer.
Villa earned the corner kick that led to the goal when midfielder Karim El-Ahmadi drilled a knuckling shot from 35 yards that required a good save from Dynamo goalkeeper Tyler Deric.
Jason Johnson was among a group of four Dynamo substitutes in the 72th minute and came close immediately after entering, challenging a back pass and forcing a clearance from Steer.
Eight minutes later substitute Brian Ownby had a quality chance, collecting a deflected cross at the top of the box, but his shot missed the target.
Aston Villa midfielder Gary Gardner nearly scored in the 87th minute, cracking a shot from 30 yards that rattled high off the post, and off Deric, before bouncing out.
Houston Dynamo vs. Aston Villa F.C.
BBVA Compass Dynamo Charities Cup
July 26, 2014 – BBVA Compass Stadium, Houston, Texas
Aston Villa: Joe Bennett (Andreas Weimann) 41
First half: Jed Steer; Chris Herd , Philippe Senderos, Nathan Baker, Matthew Lowton, Joe Bennett; Karim El-Ahmadi, Fabian Delph (Kieran Richardson 38); Charles N’Zogbia, Gabriel Agbonlahor ©, Andreas Weimann
Second half: Jed Steer; Alan Hutton, Chris Herd, Ciaran Clark, Enda Stevens; Leandro Bacuna, Gary Gardner, Ashley Westwood, Jack Grealish; Kieran Richardson, Darren Bent
Unused Substitutes: Shay Given
Houston Dynamo: Tyler Deric; Kofi Sarkodie, David Horst (Anthony Arena 79), Jermaine Taylor, Corey Ashe (AJ Cochran 72); Boniek García (Brian Ownby 72), Servando Carrasco, Ricardo Clark (Alexander López 72), Brad Davis © (Andrew Driver 64); Giles Barnes (Omar Cummings 64), Will Bruin (Jason Johnson 72)
Unused substitutes: Tally Hall, DaMarcus Beasley
AVFC: Chris Herd (Caution) 38
AVFC: Ashley Westwood (Caution) 83
Referee: Sorin Stoica
Assistant Referees: Chris Strickland, Anthony Vasoli
Fourth Official: Luis Guardia