Jedinak helps Villa draw at Birmingham

David Davis clinched a deserved point for Birmingham City as Mile Jedinak's Aston Villa escaped with a 1-1 derby draw.

David Davis Birmingham City Mile Jedinak Aston Villa

Mile Jedinak, left, in action against Birmingham Source: AAP

Australia midfielder Jedinak played a full game but Davis fired in a second-half equaliser for Birmingham after Gary Gardner had given Villa the lead with his first goal for the club.

Clayton Donaldson missed two golden chances in each half as Birmingham dominated for long spells but let Villa off the hook.

Jacques Maghoma wasted a fine opening and Ryan Shotton spurned a late chance to win it as former Blues boss Steve Bruce took a point on his St Andrew's return.

The 55-year-old, who made 84 appearances for Birmingham and was manager for six years, also handed Gabby Agbonlahor a shock return to the Villa squad after seven months in the cold.

The striker had been deemed unfit to play twice since March but Bruce gave him a chance of redemption with a place on the bench after the 30-year-old went on another personal fitness plan since the new manager's arrival two weeks ago.

He watched on as Birmingham forced the early play without success and Jordan Amavi escaped with just a yellow card after a late challenge on Maikel Kieftenbeld.

The hosts were the better side but Donaldson blew a great chance to put them ahead after 19 minutes.

Jedinak was penalised for handball and Maghoma's deep cross found Shotton to cross for Donaldson at the far post.

The striker was a yard out but somehow managed to miscue his header off the underside of the crossbar and onto the line.

Replays showed not all of the ball crossed the line and as St Andrew's begged for a goal, Villa broke as Jordan Ayew eventually fired wide after Tomasz Kuszczak collided with Albert Adomah.

The clash forced Adomah off, being replaced by Ross McCormack, but Villa shrugged off the disruption to go ahead after 29 minutes with their first effort on target.

Kieftenbeld was penalised for a high challenge on Ayew and the Ghana international swung the free-kick in for Gardner to rise above Donaldson and loop a fine header into the top corner from 12 yards.

Birmingham had shaded the opening half-an-hour but the opener silenced St Andrew's and upset the hosts' rhythm.

They failed to recover before the break but should have levelled eight minutes after the restart through Maghoma.

The winger robbed Alan Hutton to race clear but his weak effort was saved by Pierluigi Gollini and Blues could not force the rebound in.

It lifted the hosts and they continued to have the bulk of possession and deservedly levelled after 71 minutes.

Substitute David Cotterill caused problems on the right and his cross was only cleared as far as Davis and the midfielder stepped past Gardner to drill into the corner from the edge of the box.

Buoyed, Birmingham continued to press and Donaldson should have put them ahead four minutes later but the striker missed another wonderful chance when he hooked a half-volley wide from 12 yards.

Agbonlahor made his return with nine minutes left and Jonathan Kodjia nodded wide shortly afterwards in a rare Villa attack.

And Shotton could have won it with five minutes left but the birthday boy instinctively prodded over from six yards after Michael Morrison's header fell to him.

The hosts maintained their momentum during nine minutes of injury-time, after Rhoys Wiggins was taken from the field on a stretcher after an accidental clash with Rudy Gestede, but could not find a winner.

Watch the FIFA World Cup, Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, Vuelta a España, Dakar Rally, World Athletics / ISU Championships (and more) via SBS On Demand – your free live streaming and catch-up service.
Have a story or comment? Contact Us

Watch the FIFA World Cup, Tour de France, Giro d’Italia, Vuelta a España, Dakar Rally, World Athletics / ISU Championships (and more) via SBS On Demand – your free live streaming and catch-up service.
Watch nowOn Demand
Follow SBS Sport
4 min read
Published 31 October 2016 at 7:06am
Source: PA Sport