A frustrating afternoon down in Birmingham saw the Latics return back up the M6 with nothing to show after what can only be described as a lacklustre performance, a proud record also bit the dust, with Wigan Athletic suffering their first ever league defeat at Villa Park.
A game without much quality on show by either side was settled by a goal in each half that came about through mistakes in possession by Latics players, on 36 minutes Diame lost the ball on the right, Bannan put Agbonlahor away and the Villa striker cut into the box tying a back peddling Gary Caldwell in knots before firing past Al-Habsi. On 62 minutes McArthur was too easily disposed by Agbonlahor who charged down the Latics right before cutting the ball back for an unmarked Bent to tap home.
Al-Habsi pulled off three spectacular saves, one was outstanding from Bent, he managed to somehow claw the ball away after deflecting it up in the air with his knee. Di Santo looked the Latics most dangerous player, he was bundled over in the area by Villa defender Alan Hutton for a stone wall penalty with the score at 1-0, referee Mark Clattenburg turned down the appeals, he must have been unsighted, the young Argentine was full of running all afternoon but sadly had no support.
The midfield was poor, lacked any real spark, Moses looks a shadow of his earlier season form, the back four were very disjointed, the pairing of Figueroa and Caldwell is an accident waiting to happen each game and usually does.
The team play like they need a shake up, some players look in need of a rest which is quite worrying considering that we are only six games into the season. Bolton up next in what is looking like a decidedly must win fixture
Aston Villa: Given, Hutton, Dunne, Collins, Warnock, Bannan, Petrov, Delph, Ireland (Heskey, 57),Agbonlahor (Weimann, 86), Bent (N’Zogbia)
Subs: Guzan, Clark, Herd, Albrighton
Latics: Al-Habsi, McCarthy (Sammon, 84), Caldwell, Watson, Di Santo, Moses, Boyce, Diame (Maloney, 70), van Aanholt, Stam (McArthur, 55), Figueroa