Swansea City rescued a well deserved point in stoppage time against Aston Villa after a 2-2 draw at the Liberty Stadium,
Villa came from behind to lead 2-1, but in the fourth minute of injury time Danny Graham popped up to smash in a last-gasp equaliser following mayhem in the box.
The result puts Swansea up to eighth, while Villa also climb, moving above Wigan into 16th place.
Wayne Routledge opened the scoring for the home side in the ninth minute after rounding the exposed Brad Guzan, before Andreas Weimann equalised on the stroke of half time. Christian Benteke thought he’d won it for Villa after converting a penalty in the 85th minute, but it wasn’t to be.
Swansea should have had the game put to bed inside 11 minutes. Routledge went clear in the fourth after a wonderful little flick past Chris Herd. His shot was well saved by Guzan.
The winger was to make up for it though as five minutes later he again went through one-on-one against the American after a deft through pass from Pablo Hernandez; instead of shooting early, Routledge took it around Guzan and stroked it into the empty net from a tight angle.
Straight from the resulting kick off the away side nearly shot themselves in the foot again; a reckless pass across the backline from Enda Stevens was pounced upon by Michu but with only the keeper to beat, the returning Spaniard struck the inside of the near post before Graham failed to stick away the rebound.
A minute after that and Graham again had a chance to score, but his side foot from eight yards went inches wide of the near post.
Shortly before the 30 minute mark Michu nearly doubled the home side’s lead. Good work from Routledge found Ashley Williams, who had made his way into the final third. Michu still had so much to do as the defender passed into his feet, but a magical turn put him in the clear and his shot across goal hit the far post.
On the stroke of half time Weimann made them pay for their profligacy with a goal that brought an end Villa's miserable run of Villa conceding 17 Premier League goals without reply. Benteke chested down a ball, turned and released his strike partner with a clipped through ball. Weimann still has a lot to do, but he drove the ball past the outstretched arm of Michel Vorm and into the far corner of the net.
The second period was a much more even affair and there wasn’t another clear cut chance until the 72nd minute. It was Benteke, who bullied Williams and Chico Flores all day, who manufactured the opportunity as he controlled the ball on his chest and looped a shot back over his body; Williams blocked it and Weimann’s follow up shot was just wide of the far post.
With five minutes to go Villa thought they had claimed all three points. Nathan Dyer initially cleared Benteke’s header off the line, but chased the striker out towards the edge of the area and clumsily brought the Belgian crashing to the floor. Benteke himself stepped up and sent Guzan the wrong way.
However, Graham was to save Swansea's blushes deep into injury time. Substitute Nathan Dyer skipped past a challenge and got to the byline. His cross broke to Ki Sung-Yeung, who teed up Graham for an initial shot that was blocked. He made no mistake at the second attempt though as he drove a shot on the half-volley past a clutch of defenders and Guzan on the line.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Christian Benteke (Aston Villa): The striker bullied the Swansea defence, winning seemingly every aerial battle he contested. Also won and converted that late penalty.
Swansea: Vorm 6, Davies 6, Rangel 7, Chico 5, Williams 6, Britton 7, De Guzman 6, Hernandez 6, Michu 7, Routledge 7, Graham 7. Subs: Dyer 6, Ki 6, Agustien 6.
Aston Villa: Guzan 7, Lowton 6, Clark 6, Bennett 5, Herd 5, Weimann 8, Delph 6, Stevens 5, Westwood 5, Benteke 8, Albrighton 5. Subs: Holman 6, Bowery 6, Bannan 6.
- Sports & Recreation
- Aston Villa
- Christian Benteke
- Danny Graham
- Brad Guzan
- Andreas Weimann