Newcastle snatch a point against Aston Villa

Sports Desk, Mar 12 (efe-epa).- Newcastle United’s Jamaal Lascelles scored on the final play of Friday’s match to secure a 1-1 draw against Aston Villa, a point that could prove to be vital for the Magpies as they battle to stay in the Premier League.

United cling to the 16th spot with 28 points, just 2 more than Fulham in 18th.

For Villa, conceding the late equalizer meant remaining ninth in the table on 41 points, 5 away from the top six.

The hosts were without Callum Wilson, Miguel Almiron and Allan Saint-Maximin, while Villa continued to suffer from the absence of talisman and captain Jack Grealish.

Chances were few and far between and the sides were deadlocked 0-0 heading into the final 10 minutes, at which point United goalkeeper Martin Dubravka and Villa’s Emiliano Martinez had made just one save apiece.

Newcastle’s Jacob Murphy hit the cross-bar in the 82nd minute, but the hosts fell behind four minutes later on an own goal by Ciaran Clark, who inadvertently deflected Ollie Watkins’ header into the net.

Dubravka kept the Magpies alive with stops against Anwar El Ghazi and Watkins before Lascelles beat Martinez with a header off a cross from Murphy.

“There wasn’t much in the game,” United coach Steve Bruce said afterward. “The goal that they score is a bit of a fluke, but the one thing you have to do is show a bit of hunger and desire and get back into it. We’ve done that. We’ve managed to scrape something out of it and I think we’ve at least deserved that.”

Villa’s Dean Smith, though disappointed, tried to be philosophical.

“When you score a goal like we did in the 90th minute you should probably go and see it out. I can’t be too hard on the boys because they have generally done all season,” he said. EFE


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