Premier League - Dunne OG hands QPR point

Sun, 25 Sep 18:03:00 2011

Richard Dunne's late own-goal gave 10-man Queen's Park Rangers a 1-1 Premier League draw against Aston Villa at Loftus Road.

QPR 1 Aston Villa 1

The Villa captain put through his own net in the third minute of stoppage time, as an attempted Stephen Warnock clearance ricocheted in off the luckless Irishman.

Dunne is the Premier League's record own-goal scorer, and increased his tally to nine with this latest misfortune.

It cancelled out Barry Bannan's controversial 58th-minute penalty, which was awarded for a slight shirt-pull by Armand Traore, who was sent off late on for a second bookable offence.

A draw was probably a fair result after a fiercely competitive encounter in which six Villa players were booked.

After last week's win against Wolves, QPR boss Neil Warnock lamented the focus on Joey Barton's personal feud with Karl Henry, which rather ignored a fine team performance.

Another unwanted consequence is that Barton has become the Premier League's ultimate marked man - the equivalent of somebody playing football with a large 'KICK ME' sign stuck to their back.

When Stephen Warnock flew into a rash challenge a few minutes before half-time, you did not need to ask who had just been left in a crumpled heap.

Such is Barton's lot these days, though his competitive instinct is robust enough to relish the physical challenge.

Barton's arrival risked marginalising last season's player of the season Adel Taarabt, who lost the captain's armband to the controversial midfielder.

But the Moroccan was in lively form here, smacking the outside of Shay Given's post with an audacious banana shot early on.

That set the tone for a long spell of Rs dominance, and Taarabt might have scored when fed inside the box by Shaun Wright-Phillips, but he saw his effort deflected for a corner.

Jay Bothroyd then flashed a header wide from a Barton corner - for all his all-round play Bothroyd is not a natural finisher and such a player will surely be high on Neil Warnock's January shopping list.

Villa hit back late in the first half, coming close through a superb Bannan free-kick that brought a diving save from Paddy Kenny.

The visitors' dominance continued after the break, when Fabian Delph saw one goalbound effort blocked, and prodded just wide when he beat the onrushing Kenny to a ball at the edge of the box.

Referee Michael Oliver caused controversy when he penalised Traore for his microscopic infringement on Gabriel Agbonlahor. It was a tough decision - there was a tug of the shirt, however slight, but Agbonlahor certainly made the most of it.

Bannan converted with a low effort that just beat the diving Kenny's glove to the right corner of the goal.

Wright-Phillips came close to levelling with a low shot that brought a brilliant save from Given, before referee Oliver turned down Rs penalty appeals when Alan Hutton blocked a goalbound Shaun Derry header with his hand.penalised Traore for his microscopic infringement on Gabriel Agbonlahor. It was a tough decision - there was a tug of the shirt, however slight, but Agbonlahor certainly made the most of it.

Bannan converted with a low effort that just beat the diving Kenny's glove to the right corner of the goal.

Shaun Wright-Phillips came close to levelling with a low shot that brought a brilliant save from Shay Given, before referee Oliver turned down Rs penalty appeals when Alan Hutton blocked a goalbound Shaun Derry header with his hand.

Oliver turned down a second, less convincing appeal, for handball against Hutton, before Traore saw red for a reckless foul.

Just as Loftus Road threatened to explode with frustration the equaliser finally came.

Subsitute Heidar Helguson crossed low from the left, and Stephen Warnock could only clear into the body of Dunne, which diverted the ball into the Villa net.

Alex Chick - Twitter @alexchick81 / Eurosport

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