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West Brom 2-2 Aston Villa

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Benteke: Opened the scoring

Benteke: Opened the scoring

A game of two halves ended in West Brom and Aston Villa sharing the spoils in what was an entertaining 2-2 derby at the Hawthorns on Saturday.

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Villa started the game brightly, feeding off the confidence of an early goal from Christian Benteke.

The striker, Villa's main man for so much of the season, found himself with a yard of space just outside the box and slammed a stinging shot towards goal with his laces, the ball smacking the back of the net.

That early goal knocked the stuffing out of West Brom, who failed to hit their stride for large parts of the opening 45 minutes.

With the home side sorely off the pace, it was left to Villa to double their advantage before the break through Gabriel Agbonlahor, a man who enjoys scoring against today's opposition.

Agbonlahor strode into the box with the ball at his feet, skipped past Gareth McAuley, and picked out the corner of the goal with a low shot.

West Brom's first-half efforts were on the whole epitomised by a shot from Graham Dorrans that reached Row Z and was greeted by a chorus of boos from the home support.

Dorrans did better moments later with a swerving shot, while Chris Brunt smacked the palms of Brad Guzan moments before half-time, but that was as good as it got from a lethargic West Brom side before the break.

The second-half was an entirely different tale, with the home side dominating throughout.

They didn't have to wait long for the goal their pressure deserved, Brunt steering the ball in off the post with a curving effort after lovely hold-up play from Romelu Lukaku.

McAuley saw a header cleared off the line after 65 minutes, while Odemwingie missed the chance to grab an equaliser after sprinting around Guzan before firing over the bar, but Odemwingie was soon presented with an unmissable chance in front of goal.

From a West Brom corner, McAuley headed the ball towards goal, where Odemwingie stuck a foot out to slam the ball past Guzan with a left-footed volley.

Posted: 19/01/13 19:58

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