It's a pattern that's been repeated again and again throughout the Aston Villa season: the whistle is about to blow to signal the end of the half. The Villa defense concede corner or a free kick. Suddenly, the opposition has the equalizer. Or worse (for the Villa) the winning goal.
And so it has happened today at the Reebok. Johan Elmander sent in a great shot, but both Ciaran Clark and Nathan Baker were there to ensure the ball didn't threaten Brad Friedel, knocking it out of play. Kevin Davies took the Bolton corner and it was Gary Cahill, the former Villan, out-muscling Baker to send the header through the Villa defense and into the back of the net.
The teams head in to grab their tea with the score level at 1-1. With Bolton just starting to find their attack in the last five minutes or so of play, Villa will have to be on the defensive. Yet with a back line featuring three out of four inexperienced defenders, it will be a battle for the visitors to keep even one point.