Aston Villa fans will no doubt be heading into work today with a massive spring in their step following their superb 1-0 triumph over Manchester United at Old Trafford on Saturday afternoon.
Dean Smith’s side clinched a deserved three points when Kortney Hause rose highest from a late corner to thump a header past David de Gea at the near post.
And, writing in his post-match player ratings for The Birmingham Mail, Ashley Preece gave him a nine, saying: “Strong and powerful as he won key battles up against Ronaldo. Hause played centrally with Konsa and Mings either side of him. Hause was excellent and his bullet header won it. He loved it out there.”
Haue’s performance proved exactly why Villa struck absolute gold when they signed him from Wolves back in the summer of 2019 after an initial season-long loan spell at Villa Park.
The centre-back has since found game-time far more difficult to come by following the subsequent signings of both Tyrone Mings and Ezri Konsa, but the fact Smith has him as a potential rotation option, or now as someone who he can trust as the centre-most piece of a back-three, speaks volumes of his quality.
The 26-year-old has proven over the years that he is generally a reliable performer, with the pace and strength to mix it with some of the more athletic and quick strikers in the league.
Writing on Twitter before the game against United, The Telegraph’s Matt Law lauded: “Just one of a number of players to have improved immeasurably under Dean Smith. Not enough gets spoken about how Smith improves players, or the fact Hause only cost #avfc £3m – a ridiculous bargain even for a defender who has often been a squad player. Hope he stars tomorrow.”
Even Law however could surely not have imagined just how much Hause would “star” at Old Trafford.
The now £4.5m-rated ace has etched himself into folklore with his winner at Old Trafford.