Season | 2009-10 |
Matchday | #42 |
League Game | #29 |
Premier League Match-week | #29 |
Manager Game | #180 |
Saturday, 20 March 2010
Premier League | Home | Wolverhampton Wanderers | Villa Park | 37,562 |
Manager | Martin O’Neill
KO | 12.45 |
Referee | Mark Clattenburg |
HT Score | 1-2 |
FT Score | 2-2 |
FT Result | Drew |
Last 5 Games | LWDWD |
Scorers | John Carew | 16’ | 82’ |
Assists | Ashley Young | 16’ | Steve Sidwell | 82’ |
League Position | 7th | - |
Line Up |
GK Brad Friedel |
LB Stephen Warnock |
CB Carlos Cuéllar |
CB James Collins |
CB Richard Dunne | SUB OFF | 72' |
M Stiliyan Petrov | BOOKED | 23' |
W Ashley Young | ASSIST | 16' |
W Stewart Downing | SUB OFF | 77' |
W James Milner |
CF John Carew | GOAL | 16' | 82' |
CF Emile Heskey |
W Marc Albrighton for CB Richard Dunne | 72’ |
M Steve Sidwell ASSIST | 82' | for W Stewart Downing | 77’ |
Unused Substitutes |
RB Habib Beye
F Nathan Delfouneso
GK Brad Guzan
CB Ciaran Clark
RB Luke Young
Yellow | Stiliyan Petrov | 23’ |
Team Stats |
Starting XI Average Age | 29.18 |
Oldest Player | GK Brad Friedel | 38.87 |
Youngest Player | W James Milner | 24.22 |
M Nigel Reo-Coker |
F Gabby Agbonlahor |
Match Stats |
Possession F | 54
Possession A | 46
Shots F | 11
Shots A | 7
Shots on Target F | 3
Shots on Target A | 4
Corners F | 7
Corners A | 5
Fouls F | 10
Fouls A | 12
Saturday, 20 March 2010
Relegation-threatened Wolves were denied the spoils after a John Carew double salvaged a draw for Aston Villa.*
The hosts grabbed the lead when James Milner and Ashley Young combined well on the left for Carew to side-foot in.
Wolves hit back after a David Jones free-kick was mis-hit by Ronald Zubar for Jody Craddock to blast home.
A Milner own goal had Wolves sensing a shock victory, but after a flurry of second-half chances, Carew was close by to tap in Steve Sidwell’s pass.
Both teams would have kicked off their 100th meeting in the league desperate for all three points for contrasting reasons and this keenly-contested battle was a hugely entertaining and open affair.
Villa, starting the day in seventh and hunting the fourth Champions League spot, began with invention and energy and Stephen Warnock came within a whisker of stabbing in Carew’s dragged shot inside five minutes.
The Norwegian striker did not have to wait much longer for another golden chance and he made no mistake from six yards to bag the opener.
In the stands, England boss Fabio Capello would have been impressed by the contribution of midfielder Milner, who burst through the middle to set up Young on the left and his low cross was easily slotted home by the unmarked Carew.
Despite being the lowest scorers in the Premier League, Wolves did not crumble as one might have thought and they hit back only seven minutes later.
A floated Jones free-kick dropped to Zubar three yards out and after his mis-timed shot bizarrely went backwards, the ball fell to defender Craddock who crashed home his fifth of the season.
Worse was to come for Villa’s increasingly animated manager Martin O’Neill as he witnessed his highly regarded defence breached for the second time in 15 minutes.
Jones was the provider again and after a mazy run, the midfielder fed the ball to Matthew Jarvis on the left and his cross was poked into his own net by the unlucky Milner.
Wolves fought desperately as Villa piled forward searching for an equaliser before the interval and Stewart Downing wasted a golden opportunity when he nodded down and over from Young’s cross.
After ending a three-match losing streak last week with a win at Burnley, the visitors looked comfortable in thwarting the Villa attack, thanks also to manager Mick McCarthy shoring up his defence with George Elokobi in for Adiene Guedioura at the start of the second half.
The long balls continued to pepper the Wolves backline but keeper Marcus Hahnemann stood firm as Heskey and Carew both missed headed chances.
O’Neill continued to jump, scratch his head and bark orders from the touchline and he was nearly rewarded as the lively Young struck another dangerous cross for the towering Heskey to nod the ball off the backs of the defenders into the arms of Hahnemann.
With eight minutes left on the clock, the Wolves’ hearts were finally broken when Carew narrowly avoided the offside flag to stab in the equaliser.
Young, for once, was not involved as Brad Friedel’s monumental kick bounced through to Heskey and substitute Sidwell was lurking on the edge of the box to feed the ball through to Carew to restore parity again.
It was slightly harsh on a very hard-working Wolves, who might have nicked it at the end when a sloppy Warnock back-pass almost led to a winner from Kevin Doyle.
*Wolves boss Mick McCarthy:*
“My heart rate is still pounding but I’m pleased - but also disappointed,” he said after a 2-2 draw at Villa Park.
“Once we settled down we gave an excellent account of ourselves. I thought we were terrific.
“I’m disappointed with the goals but there are more positives. It feels like we’ve had a couple of points snatched away but it was our own downfall.”
*Aston Villa manager Martin O’Neill:*
“I’ve got nothing but admiration for the players. They were not the best goals in the world, but they fought when we had to throw everything at it.
“I couldn’t have any more respect and regard for the players.”
“On chasing a Champions League qualifying fourth spot, O’Neill added: “The race is well and truly on. We are not out of it.”
Saturday, 20 March 2010
John Carew’s two goals earn Aston Villa a point to deny Wolves
So intense has the contest for fourth place become that draws can be as significant as defeats. Aston Villa may be unbeaten in the Premier League in 2010 but of the nine league games played since the turn of the year only three have been won and after being unexpectedly held at home by Wolves at lunchtime on Saturday they ended up five points adrift of their goal following Tottenham’s win at Stoke.
The manner in which Villa slipped from the brilliant to the banal, threatening to overrun Wolves in the opening 20 minutes but then finding themselves 2-1 behind at half-time, was a microcosm of the way recent seasons at Villa Park have tended to go: abundant promise unfulfilled. A few boos accompanied the players off at the interval. Afterwards Martin O’Neill seemed keen to keep everyone’s pecker up, including his own. “The opening 20 minutes was as good a display as we’ve produced in recent times,” he enthused. ‘’It was scintillating stuff and you could have got long odds on us being booed off at half-time.”
O’Neill was right to praise the effort his team produced in the second half but the fact remained that Wolves were within eight minutes of beating Aston Villa for the first time in 30 years when John Carew’s second goal denied them victory. The manager got quite huffy when someone suggested his team might be wobbling on the run-in. “Didn’t you see us win at Wigan?” he demanded, making it sound like the result of the season.
Whether or not Villa are again about to go backwards once the clocks have gone forwards remains to be seen but on this evidence they urgently need to start turning draws into wins.
A continued failure to take a higher percentage of their chances remains the biggest problem, particularly when Ashley Young is consistently putting centres so precisely on to the heads of his colleagues that all they need to do is nod in the right direction.
Young’s performance will have impressed Fabio Capello as he sorts out his thoughts on likely wingers for England’s World Cup squad. Villa Park would have gone home in a happier frame of mind if at least one of the recipients of Young’s immaculate service in the second half had shown his appreciation by finding the target.
Wolves did not look like a side struggling to stay out of the bottom three any more than Villa finished the game appearing on the verge of breaking into the top four. Mick McCarthy’s players defended in numbers, to be sure, but this was not a purely defensive performance. Kevin Doyle, their lone striker, was tireless in his efforts to hold the ball up and enjoyed shrewd support from David Jones, who was forever popping up in space near goal. When Carew met Young’s low cross to sidefoot Aston Villa ahead after 16 minutes, having come from an offside position, an easy home win seemed the outcome.
Yet all that changed with a gratuitous foul midway through the first half which brought Stilian Petrov a yellow card and Wolves a goal tapped in by Jody Craddock after Ronald Zubar had met Jones’s free kick with a miscue. Slack defending, allied to a slick exchange of passes between Jones and Matthew Jarvis, led to James Milner scoring at the wrong end as he lunged back to deal with the danger.
Wolves clung tenaciously to their lead for much of the second half but were undone by a long clearance from Brad Friedel which was not dealt with. Carew and Emile Heskey then set up a chance for a substitute, Steve Sidwell, whose shot was deflected past Marcus Hahnemann by Carew following up.