Newcastle Vs. Aston Villa, 2012 Premier League: Final Score 1-1, Villains Look Improved

Aston Villa still don't have a win this season, but Paul Lambert's team showed signs of life in a solid performance at St. James' Park. Newcastle still looked a bit hungover from their loss last week, but pulled out one spectacular goal to grab a 1-1 draw from a game that they expected to win, but that they could have easily lost.

Ciaran Clark scored the opener shortly following a set piece, on Villa's second attempt to get the ball into the box. Nothing came out of Villa's 21st minute corner, but Clark stayed forward and the Villains were able to get the ball back into the box. Barry Bannan sent in a cross from the left and Clark did well to get in between two defenders, then nod in a simple header.

Newcastle were average for much of the match, but Hatem Ben Arfa bailed his team out with a beautiful goal in the 59th minute. From the edge of the penalty area, he took a touch forward, then unleashed a stellar drive that Brad Guzan had no chance to save into the top corner at the far post. Why he was given so much space to shoot is anyone's guess, and Lambert won't be pleased with his team's failure to close down a player as dangerous as Ben Arfa.

The Magpies almost snatched a win in stoppage time on a free kick by Yohan Cabaye, but Guzan made a stunning save to rescue a point for his side.

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