Made two good saves to deny Weimann. Could do nothing to stop Agbonlahor's strike. His handling and kicking were impressive.
Was a rock at the back for the Black Cats as he was involved in a very physical tussle with Benteke. He always seemed to be in the right place at the right time to make good interceptions.
The former Manchester United defender looked a bit off the pace in his first Premier League start of the season. He was okay defensively bar a couple of occasions when he was burned for pace by Agbonlahor. Beaten too easily in the air by Benteke which led to Agbonlahor's strike.
He did not look entirely comfortable at times but coped with everything Villa threw at him aerially in the first half. Was occasionally caught out by the pace of Agbonlahor but was on hand to make good covering tackles. Should have done better to stop Agbonlahor getting his strike away.
Made an excellent intervention to stop Weimann getting through on goal. Was reluctant to push forward at times which halted his side's forward momentum. Struggled defensively in the second half and could have done better to stop Lowton's cross.
Not at his best at all. His crossing was poor and he drifted in field far too often which restricted Sunderland's options on the right and narrowed their approach. Poor set-pieces.
The Black Cats skipper was more restrained than his usual self. His passing was accurate but lacked forward penetration as he looked for the easy option behind him or out wide.
The England international had some success on the flanks as he swapped between the two during the game. However after beating the first man he often tried to overdo it and the opening he created for himself was spurned much to the frustration of the home crowd. Faded in the second half.
Poor touch let him down when in promising positions. Looked a lot livelier than he has done in recent weeks as he was afforded space and time in the Aston Villa half which allowed him to link-up with Steven Fletcher.
The former Birmingham man struggled to get into the game in the midfield and was easily dispossessed at times as he was unaware of his surroundings. Tried to drive Sunderland forward but was often forced to look for other options on the wing.
The Scottish international led the line strongly and held the ball up extremely well against Clark. He linked up well with Sessegnon as the two combined to good effect to cause the Villa defence some problems but these moments were few and far between.
Was not forced into action by Sunderland until the 82nd minute but saved Cattermole's effort with ease. The American was steady when called upon.
Struggled against Fletcher, failing to stop the striker from finding a team-mate as he held the ball up. Was good in the air and stopped the threat the Black Cats posed from set-pieces. Picked up his game in the second half.
Did well at right-back as he was able to stifle the threat of Johnson and then Larsson. Raided well down the right and provided a good cross to Benteke who headed down to Agbonlahor for his opener.
Did not make a huge impact in his time on the field as he was substituted after 10 minutes.
Solid presence at the back for Villa, snuffed out Sunderland attacks when they came his way and was dominant in the air. Good performance.
The midfielder used the ball well and always seemed to find a team-mate in the first half. His crossing from corners was too inconsistent and good opportunities were often were wasted.
Had a good game and was influential in creating the openings Villa did force. The former Manchester City man was solid in the tackle as he tried to match the tenacity of Cattermole.
Broke up the play nicely in midfield as he prevented Gardner from breaking forward. Used the ball efficiently without being spectacular.
Caused the Sunderland defence problems with his pace but was not really a factor in the first half. Showed predatory instincts to nip ahead of Cuellar to give Villa the win.
Could have done better with headed chance in the first half. He moved nicely to escape the attentions of O'Shea. Gave as good as he got in the battle with the Irishman. Did well to beat Bardsley in the air to create chance for Agbonlahor.
Drifted in and out of the game. When he was good he looked dangerous and ran at the Sunderland defence which caused a few errors for Jack Colback. Improved as the game wore on.