Latics took a point from the match to extend their unbeaten run to three games, but Roberto Martinez must be feeling that a chance to get off the foot of the table was lost as his side failed to convert chances into goals.
Martinez started the same eleven that had defeated Bolton last time out, although the performance was good, the failure to score goals is still a major worry. Gary Caldwell had Latics first chance when he attempted a volley reminiscent of the great Holland striker Marco van Basten, a Beausejour corner was floated over to the far post and the Latics skipper hit an effort with both feet off the ground, unfortunately the ball just went the wrong side of the far top corner.
Next up Beausejour and Moses combined well, Moses crossed a low ball into the box, both McCarthy and Boyce went for it and got in each other’s way and the chance was gone. Latics looked threatening down the left side with both Moses and Beausejour creating problems, but you need to hit the target to score and unfortunately that just didn’t happen in the first half.
Villa also threatened, first with Bent, Al-Habsi saving well with the striker through on goal, then Warnock hit a shot into the side netting under pressure from Alcaraz, who alongside Gary Caldwell was immense all afternoon.
The second half saw the tempo of the game increase, Rodallega was introduced for Gomez and almost scored with a cracking effort from 25 yards, turning smartly the Colombia international hit a left footed screamer that just whistled over the Villa bar with Given well beaten.
Di Santo had Latics last effort of the game, a strike late on that almost caught Given off guard, but the Republic of Ireland international goalkeeper got down well to save smartly at his near post.
Next up Swansea, we need a win
Latics – Al-Habsi, Alcaraz, McCarthy (Diame 79), Caldwell (c), Di Santo, Moses (Crusat 89), Gomez (Rodallega 65), McArthur, Boyce, Beausejour, Figueroa.
Unused subs: Kirkland, Watson, Jones, Stam.
Aston Villa – Given, Hutton, Collins, Warnock, Bent (N’Zogbia 79), Agbonlahor (c), Albrighton (Heskey 70), Keane, Cuellar, Bannan, Gardner (Ireland 74).
Unused subs: Guzan, Weimann, Herd, Baker.
Anyone else notice Steve Bruce at the game disguised as a paramedic?
Latics and Proud
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