Aston Villa 3-3 Liverpool: Hosts Complete Sensational Turnaround In Penultimate Premier League Outing

ASton Villa Draw Liverpool
ASton Villa Draw Liverpool

Eyeing to secure UEFA Champions League qualification for the first time since the tournament got a facelift in 1992, Aston Villa welcomed Liverpool to Villa Park for their penultimate Premier League match of the season on Monday night (May 13).

It started with a disaster at Villa Park and, for the most part, the Villa fans had very little to cheer for. However, thanks to a sensational cameo from Jhon Duran, the West Midlanders walked away with an invaluable point, pulling five points clear of fifth-placed Tottenham Hotspur. The Lilywhites do have a game in hand, but with Manchester City standing in front of them, the chances of a Spurs win look rather slim.

Liverpool Made Aston Villa Suffer For Majority Of The Night

Aston Villa suffered a catastrophic start in front of their fans, as 2022 FIFA World Cup winner Emiliano Martinez bundled the ball into his own net just two minutes into the game. Harvey Elliott’s cross toward the goal took a deflection off Ezri Konsa, catching Martinez wrong-footed. The Argentine tried to clear but fumbled it past the goal line in what was a rare blunder from the 31-year-old goalkeeper. A couple of minutes later, Mohamed Salah came agonizingly close to scoring, as his curling effort took a deflection off Pau Torres and missed the right post by the narrowest of margins.

Aston Villa equalized against the run of play in the 12th minute, thanks to a brilliant piece of play by Ollie Watkins. The Englishman beat Trent Alexander-Arnold down the left flank and picked out Youri Tielemans at the edge of the area. The Belgian midfielder made no mistake in beating Alisson Becker from close range.

Unai Emery’s side, however, could not build on their advantage and conceded only 11 minutes later. Receiving the ball from Luis Diaz, Joe Gomez played a low cross across the goal. Martinez tried to palm it away, but his weak touch only took the ball to Gakpo, making for a simple tap-in. Three minutes into the second half, Jarell Quansah made it three for the Reds, brilliantly heading in Elliott’s free-kick delivery.

Jhon Duran Sent Villa Park Into Pandemonium

Trailing mighty Liverpool 3-1, Aston Villa needed something extra special in the second half to turn things around. Things initially did not break their way in the second half, but Jhon Duran ensured his team were not empty-handed at the end of the game. Duran came off the bench in the 79th minute, replacing the injured Nicolo Zaniolo. Six minutes later, he drilled in a left-footed effort from the edge of the box, comfortably beating Alisson.

In the 88th minute, Moussa Diaby dispatched a through ball for Duran. The pass had too much power, but fortunately for Villa, it clattered against Duran’s left knee, looped over Alisson, and nestled into the back of the net. Neither Duran nor Alisson could do much about the goal, but the Villans did not care, as they took a major step toward UEFA Champions League qualification.

Liverpool, meanwhile, dropped points for the fifth time in their last seven Premier League outings. With Arsenal and Manchester City guaranteed to finish in the top two, the Merseysiders will end Jurgen Klopp’s final Premier League campaign in third place.

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