Hull City 0 Aston Villa 2
A Gabriel Agbonlahor goal saw the visitors 1-0 up at half time, then a James Milner penalty on the hour mark sealed the victory for Villa, making it four games without a win for the struggling Tigers.
Hull's Kevin Kilbane was presented with an early chance for Ian Dowie's side but his first-time right-footed shot ballooned over the Villa crossbar from just inside the box.
Milner tried his luck for the visitors moments later but he dragged his long range right-footed shot well wide of the post.
Villa broke the deadlock on 13 minutes as a Paul McShane clearance deflected off the back of John Carew and into the path of Agbonlahor who curled the ball majestically into the top corner of the net to register his 13th league goal of the season.
Villans skipper Stiliyan Petrov came close to doubling his side's lead just after going ahead but the Bulgarian International bent his long range effort wide of the post.
Hull then came within inches of an equaliser midway through the half. Kilbane slipped a neat through ball into Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink whose low shot was parried away by keeper Brad Friedel but only back into the path of Kilbane who found himself with only a defender to beat on the line but somehow the Irishman's shot was deflected up and over the bar by a resolute James Collins.
Steven Mouyokolo came close to levelling the score within minutes of the second half after a long throw from Ibrahima Sonko found its way into the feet of the Hull defender but his miscued shot from close range was well turned over the bar by Friedel.
Hull's Vennegoor of Hesselink was then forced off with injury after a suspected clash of heads with Villa defender Richard Dunne. Jozy Altidore came on to replace the ex-Celtic forward.
Agbonlahor came close to grabbing his second goal of the night midway through the half but his curling left-footed shot was well turned away by keeper Matt Duke.
Villa were then awarded a penalty on 74 minutes as George Boetang was adjudged to have brought down Milner inside the box. Milner took the resulting spot-kick and made no mistake, sending Duke the wrong way to make it 2-0 to Martin O'Neill's men.