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Barclays Premier League

Villa Park (ATT 28,692) 27th November 2012 - Kick off 20:00 Ref: L Probert

A Villa Aston Villa vs Reading Reading

A Villa 1

C Benteke (80)

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Aston Villa climbed out of the Premier League drop zone with victory against Reading thanks to Christian Benteke's winner

By Razwan Mirza - Tweet me: @RazMirza.   Last Updated: 28/11/12 8:08am

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Christian Benteke fired Aston Villa out of the relegation zone with a late winning goal in a 1-0 Villa Park victory over Reading.

The striker rose highest with 10 minutes remaining to power his fifth goal for the club and secure a much-needed three points in the basement battle at Villa Park.

Up until that point Reading had produced a hard working performance and looked on course for a point in a game void of any quality in front of Villa's lowest home league gate - 28,692 - for six years.

Best of the game.

  • Man of the match: Benteke will get the headlines, but Bannan was constantly involved in starting Villa attacks
  • Attempt of the match: Tabb made a scintillating run late in the game and only a timely tackle from Clark prevented him.
  • Save of the match: Guzan was called into action from a Roberts shot at the near post, and the American reacted superbly, his right leg forcing the ball away from goal.
  • Moment of the match: Benteke's goal produced a roar of euphoric relief from the home fans that spared Paul Lambert's side what may well have been a chorus of boos at full time.
  • Talking point: Villa pick up a much need win to escape the drop zone for the time being. For Reading, a defeat from a late goal will surely haunt Brian McDermott's players

Benteke and Andreas Weimann failed to take the hosts' best opportunities while Adam Le Fondre should have scored for the Royals.

Villa started the game on the front foot, keeping hold of the ball without really penetrating the Reading backline.

They were very nearly punished when Mikele Leigertwood's teasing cross from the right was deflected up into the air, but Le Fondre was unable to find the back of the net with his acrobatic overhead kick attempt.

The hosts were next to go close as Brett Holman's daisy cutter of a cross was well controlled by Benteke, but his effort towards goal was tame, allowing Adam Federici to make an easy save.

Soon after Villa should have taken the lead as Benteke's clever pull-back was smashed over the crossbar from Weimann.

Nathan Baker then headed over the crossbar from Barry Bannan's corner and Benteke's curler was easily held by the busy Federici as the sides went into the interval with the game finely balanced.

Following a scrappy opening to the second period the Royals should have broken the deadlock just before the hour mark as Le Fondre somehow managed to head over the bar from Nicky Shorey's corner.

At the other end, Villa squandered another opportunity from a corner of their own as Ciaran Clark headed inches wide.

The hard working Jason Roberts then cut inside before his shot was cleared to safety by the right-boot of Brad Guzan.

Just as the game was heading for a dull goalless draw, Villa broke the deadlock with 10 minutes remaining.

And it was Benteke who found the target as he climbed above Sean Morrison to meet Ashley Westwood's corner to send the ball into the far corner to seal the three points for Paul Lambert's side.


Aston VillaTeam StatisticsReading
1Goals0
01st Half Goals0
5Shots on Target3
6Shots off Target6
6Blocked Shots4
8Corners3
11Fouls6
2Offsides3
1Yellow Cards0
0Red Cards0
74.7Passing Success65.8
22Tackles10
68.2Tackles Success30
55.1Possession44.9
53.5Territorial Advantage46.5
371Total Passes292
29Total Crosses25
181Lost Balls200
51Recoveries54
60.31st Half Poss.39.7
51.42nd Half Poss.48.6

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Matches

Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Liverpool 34 77
2 Chelsea 34 75
3 Manchester City 33 71
4 Arsenal 34 67
5 Everton 34 66
6 Tottenham Hotspur 34 60
7 Manchester United 33 57
8 Southampton 34 48
9 Newcastle United 34 46
10 Stoke City 34 43
11 Crystal Palace 34 40
12 West Ham United 34 37
13 Hull City 33 36
14 Aston Villa 33 34
15 Swansea City 34 33
16 West Bromwich Albion 33 33
17 Norwich City 34 32
18 Fulham 34 30
19 Cardiff City 34 29
20 Sunderland 33 26

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