Belfast Telegraph

Bolton fightback denies Villa

Ivan Klasnic capped a stirring Bolton comeback by ramming home a dramatic winner four minutes from time to sink Aston Villa 3-2 at the Reebok Stadium

Villa led twice through Darren Bent and Marc Albrighton while Bent also hit the post, but Gary Cahill twice hauled the home side level.

And Klasnic - a late replacement for Johan Elmander - pounced in a crowded box to blast home a back-header from David Wheater and steal the points.

Bolton started best with Johan Elmander shooting over, before Bent was guilty of a terrible miss at the other end. Bent beat the offside trap to charge onto Ashley Young's through-ball, only to mis-kick as he attempted to dummy Jussi Jaaskelainen.

Luke Young headed off the line in the 14th minute after Brad Friedel spilled a corner from Martin Petrov and Kevin Davies headed goalwards but Bent redeemed himself in the 15th minute when he prodded Villa in front from point-blank range after a superb run and cross by Kyle Walker.

Bent almost grabbed his second in the 21st minute when he steered Albrighton's cross against the post and Owen Coyle's men produced little of note until first-half injury time, when Petrov swung in a corner and Gary Cahill rose to power home the equaliser.

Villa could have retaken the lead when Albrighton crossed and Stewart Downing stole in unmarked only to sidefoot wide of a gaping target but they got the second goal in the 64th minute when Downing raced down the right and crossed for Albrighton to finish right-footed.

Villa should have wrapped the game up when Young won a spot-kick after being barged by David Wheater, but fired straight at Jaaskelainen.

And they were made to pay five minutes later when Stuart Holden's corner found Cahill, who saw his initial header saved before volleying home the rebound.

Bolton then snatched their winner when Chung-yong Lee's deep cross was headed back by Wheater for Klasnic to blast home.

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