News24

Bent injury overshadows draw

2012-02-25 20:05

Wigan - Aston Villa's England striker Darren Bent suffered what looked like a serious injury in an otherwise unremarkable 0-0 draw against fellow Premier League tailenders Wigan on Saturday.

The draw did little to help Wigan who remain bottom of the table, though just a point off safety, while Villa cannot breathe easily just yet.

They are eight points clear of the bottom three but defeat against Blackburn Rovers next weekend could see them dragged into a battle for survival.

Wigan – whose winless streak now stands at 11 but at least kept only their second clean sheet in 23 Premier League games – had outstanding Omani 'keeper Ali Al-Habsi to thank for them going in at half-time on level terms.

Al-Habsi, who was also pivotal in Wigan retaining their elite status last term, made crucial saves.

The best came off Bent, the England striker being set up by Irish veteran Robbie Keane, who was making his last appearance on loan before returning to the LA Galaxy.

The hosts dominated possession, playing the fluent style that coach Roberto Martinez favours, but Jordi Gomez, Franco di Santo and Antolin Alcaraz were all wasteful when in good positions to beat Shay Given.

The second-half produced little in the way of chances and ended on a worrying note for Villa manager Alex McLeish as Bent had to be stretchered off after going down following a clean tackle by Alcaraz.

It was all Wigan as the game entered its closing stages with Hugo Rodallega having two chances, the first flying high over the bar and the second forcing Given into a save.

The fact that it was his first of the match said everything about the accuracy of the hosts' shooting.

SAPA