THIS was better than celebrating corners three years ago in Villa’s last Premier League game at Watford, that’s for sure.
Of course Villa were second best for most of the game.
Spurs were stronger and had more guile, with 56,000 more fans behind them.
And Villa should have been 2-0 down before John McGinn hit their ninth-minute opener, but the travelling fans will not have cared one bit.
In the end, there was heartbreak but this was nonetheless a triumph for Dean Smith and the togetherness harnessed at a club broken 12 months ago.
Villa faced an onslaught in the last 20 minutes of each half but threw everything at it.
Tyrone Mings hammered his fist into the turf when Spurs’ second went in, knowing his graft would count for nothing.
Of the new signings, Bjorn Engels was magnificent and showed the calmness, sense of timing and positional awareness alongside the colossal Mings to suggest Villa can weather some storms once anchormen Douglas Luiz and Marvelous Nakamba are up to speed in front of them.
Smith had spent £131.5million on new signings but a lad who cost just £2.75m from Hibernian put them ahead.
What scenes in the away end when the turbo-charged Scot put Danny Rose on his backside to fire in the opener.
Smith had sprung a surprise by picking Ahmed Elmohamady and Neil Taylor, last season’s full-backs, ahead of Matt Targett and Frederic Guilbert.
But both stood up to the task, with Elmohamady teaming up with Egypt team-mate Trezeguet down Villa’s right.
Trezeguet’s pace was electric and outshone £22m club-record signing Wesley, whose tantrums Smith will have to keep an eye out.
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Jack Grealish will be gutted to have given the ball away for Spurs’ second goal after Tanguy Ndmobele’s curler had broken Villa’s resistance.
Tom Heaton made a couple of magnificent stops inbetween – he really could be Villa’s best signing of the lot.
Villa were shot by the time Harry Kane completed by his late double by curling in Tottenham’s third, but on this evidence Grealish and Villa will have better fortune ahead.