Ahmed Elmohamady returned to his old club with his old Hull manager to ensure that the recent wave of optimism that has swept through Villa Park continued on the field last night.
With the summer of potential financial ruin behind them thanks to new owners, the Egyptian International struck a crucial second goal on 70 minutes at the club where he spent five seasons, four under his Villa boss Steve Bruce.
It came from a disastrous clearance from keeper David Marshall which fell straight to him, opening up the chance to swap passes with Conor Hourihane.
Aston Villa goalscorer Alan Hutton (centre) is mobbed by his team-mates after scoring
Hutton and the rest of the Villa players celebrate their 3-1 win at Hull with the away fans
Aston Villa beat Hull 3-1 on Monday thanks to a goal from ex-Tiger Ahmed Elmohamady (left)
Elmohamady pounced on an error from David Marshall to punish his former club
Alan Hutton (pictured) sealed the destination of the points with a brilliant solo goal
That left Elmohamady the chance to sweep in a deadly finish from 15 yards.
The win was secured five minutes later with the most popular goal of the evening, for the Villa fans at least.
Cult hero defender Alan Hutton found space and showed fancy footwork and tight control to weave himself through the Hull defence and finish from eight yards.
Just 72 days eventful days since the heartache of losing to Fulham in the play-off final at Wembley, Steve Bruce and Villa were back in action at the start of their bid to end their two-season exile in the Championship.
And they were required to bounce back after falling behind just seven minutes into the new season.
It was a goal that would have frustrated Bruce as his goalkeeper Jed Steer appeared to have cleared a free-kick with a solid punch to the edge of the Villa box.
Evandro (pictured) had given hosts Hull the lead in the seventh minute with a lobbed finish
But Elphick capitalised on some slack defending to quickly equalise for Aston Villa
Elphick (right) celebrates with Villa team-mates Ahmed Elmohamady and James Chester
But Brazilian Evandro was in space and lofted in a hopeful high ball which looped over defender Tommy Elphick’s desperate goalline attempt to clear and nestled in the Villa goal.
Here was the first test of the new campaign for a Villa side that could be forgiven for suffering a hangover from that fateful play-off defeat and the financial Armageddon that loomed over the club immediately afterwards.
But with billionaires Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens now pulling the strings, there is a new air of optimism around Villa Park and they reflected that with a quick response.
Jack Grealish – one of the players central to this summer’s soap opera around Villa – delivered a magnificent left-wing corner and Elphick made up for his earlier slip by soaring above Jordy de Wijs and heading in the equaliser.
Grealish, rated at £40 million but going nowhere according to Bruce, looked a threat and Jonathan Kodija missed out on a couple of half-chances, one from a skilful pull back from Conor Hourihane.
But Bruce’s former club, who looked in danger of slipping out of the Championship at one stage last season, were unrecognisable from those dark days, their slick passing and movement causing problems for Villa’s experienced back four.
Fraizer Campbell played in Jarrod Bowen soon after the equaliser and only Steer’s sprint off his line and diving block prevented a goal.
Hull manager Nigel Adkins (pictured) watches on as his side lost at home to Aston Villa
Ahmed Elmohamady refused to celebrate his goal that put Villa 2-1 up at the KCOM Stadium
Veteran Campbell then cleared the bar from 20-plus yards before playing a through ball for Evandro to chase, again forcing the alert Steer of his line to snuff out trouble.
And Hull looked in the mood to continue in that fashion soon after the restart, when the lively Bowen had a 20-yard left-foot shot take a slight deflection and pass just beyond Villa’s right-hand post.
But Grealish began to take the game by the scruff of the neck, pulling strings in midfield and mistakes began to creep into the Hull defence – no wonder Villa fans chanted “We want you to stay” as he left the field 10 minutes from time.
Markus Henriksen cleared directly against a team mate’s head and escaped a penalty shout after he tussled with Albert Adomah for the rebound.
Hourihane guided a dangerous-looking free-kick over from 22 yards, as Villa started to turn the screw, and the two quick goals soon followed.
Hull (4-2-3-1): Marshall; Lichaj, De Wijs, Burke, Kingsley; Batty, Henriksen; Bowen, Kane (Milinkovic 67), Evandro (Keane 86); Campbell (Dicko 67)
Subs not used Stewart, Long, MacDonald, Irvine
Scorer: Evadro 7
Aston Villa (4-1-4-1): Steer; Chester, Elphick, Hutton, Elmohamady; Whelan, Hourihane, Taylor, Grealish (Bjarnason 83), Adomah (Green 67); Kodjia (Hepburn-Murphy 77)
Subs not used: Lansbury, Bree, Gardner, Bunn
Scorer: Elphick 14, Elmohamady 70, Hutton 75
Referee: Andy Madley