Alex McLeish enjoyed the perfect home debut as Aston Villa manager, with his team overcoming a lacklustre Blackburn Rovers side.
Gabriel Agbonlahor was able to cut in from the left and curl home delightfully, but Rovers’ defending was far too generous.
Emile Heskey doubled Villa’s lead after 25 minutes, with his falling finish creeping over Paul Robinson.
It was Heskey’s eighth ever goal against Blackburn – the most he has against any team.
Blackburn hit back through a Morten Gamst Pedersen header, but their challenge did not last long.
Darren Bent hit home a rebound to give Villa their cushion back, and all three points were secured.
Aston Villa 1-0 Blackburn Rovers (Agbonlahor)
Aston VIlla 2-0 Blackburn Rovers (Heskey)
Aston Villa 2-1 Blackburn Rovers (Pedersen)
Aston Villa 3-1 Blackburn Rovers (Bent)