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West Brom 2-2 Aston Villa: Jay Rodriguez earns Baggies stoppage-time draw


Aston Villa players

Villa players were furious after it appeared Jay Rodriguez’s equaliser went in off his hand

Jay Rodriguez bundled in a controversial injury-time equaliser with his hand as West Brom twice came from behind to draw a dramatic derby with Aston Villa.

Two Anwar El Ghazi goals – one wickedly defected off Ahmed Hegazi, the second a stunner – had looked set to lift Dean Smith’s Villa into the Championship top six and earn them a third-straight away win.

But, from Matt Phillips’ right-wing cross, Villa keeper Orjan Nyland was found wanting as Rodriguez bravely nipped in ahead of him and the ball bounced in off his hand while the striker was on the floor.

Villa players complained to referee Darren England it had gone in illegally but, after consulting with his fellow officials, he gave it.

The leveller took Rodriguez to 10 Championship goals for the season, matching his strike partner Dwight Gayle, who had slotted home Albion’s first equaliser before the break.

A second home draw in the space of five days moves third-placed Albion within four points of leaders Norwich City, while Villa remain eighth, now two points off a play-off place.

But Villa top scorer Tammy Abraham had only himself to blame for not putting the game to bed when, at 2-1 up, he missed two great chances.

Another derby full of incident

Villa took a hugely fortunate 12th-minute lead when Albion defender Hegazi got in the way of El Ghazi’s goalbound left-foot shot – and succeeded only in steering home a deft header, which totally wrong footed home keeper Sam Johnstone.

But the Baggies responded well and were level on 28 minutes when Harvey Barnes won his one-on-one duel with Alan Hutton down the Albion left, chipped to the right of the box and found Gayle who controlled before steering home a low right-foot shot on the volley.

John McGinn was close to restoring Villa’s lead when his powerful right-foot drive slammed against Johnstone’s left upright.

But, when his Villa team-mate El Ghazi came up with a strike of similar quality, this time there was no escape for Albion.

Jack Grealish set it up with a weaving crossfield run but, just when he was bundled off the ball looking for a free kick, the ball ran on to El Ghazi and he unleashed a 25-yard right foot thunderbolt that flew into the top right corner.

Gayle then headed over and it needed a great cover tackle to deny Barnes, before Villa should have sealed victory at the other end.

From Yannick Bolasie’s left wing cross, 11-goal Abraham somehow conjured up an incredible miss as he went to slide in with his left foot, got his long legs in a hopeless tangle and missed completely. And he then flashed a near post header high and wide.

Albion then survived a big penalty shout when Hegazi appeared to take out both Bolasie and Abraham.

But it was the Baggies who had the last word as, despite furious Villa protests it was handball, Rodriguez rescued a point.

Live Text

Match ends, West Bromwich Albion 2, Aston Villa 2.

Second Half ends, West Bromwich Albion 2, Aston Villa 2.

Corner, West Bromwich Albion. Conceded by Conor Hourihane.

Glenn Whelan (Aston Villa) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

Matt Phillips (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Glenn Whelan (Aston Villa).

Attempt saved. Kieran Gibbs (West Bromwich Albion) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal.

Goal! West Bromwich Albion 2, Aston Villa 2. Jay Rodriguez (West Bromwich Albion) with an attempt from very close range to the bottom right corner.

Ørjan Nyland (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Dwight Gayle (West Bromwich Albion).

Substitution, Aston Villa. Glenn Whelan replaces Jack Grealish because of an injury.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) because of an injury.

Attempt saved. Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt blocked. Anwar El Ghazi (Aston Villa) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ahmed El Mohamady.

Attempt saved. Dwight Gayle (West Bromwich Albion) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Gareth Barry.

Substitution, Aston Villa. Jonathan Kodjia replaces Yannick Bolasie.

Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Oliver Burke replaces Tosin Adarabioyo.

Tammy Abraham (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Ahmed Hegazi (West Bromwich Albion).

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Tammy Abraham (Aston Villa) because of an injury.

Delay in match Craig Dawson (West Bromwich Albion) because of an injury.

Attempt missed. Jay Rodriguez (West Bromwich Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box is high and wide to the left. Assisted by Tosin Adarabioyo.

Attempt blocked. Craig Dawson (West Bromwich Albion) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked. Assisted by Jay Rodriguez.

Foul by Jack Grealish (Aston Villa).

Gareth Barry (West Bromwich Albion) wins a free kick on the right wing.

Conor Hourihane (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Jay Rodriguez (West Bromwich Albion).

Hand ball by Jay Rodriguez (West Bromwich Albion).

Substitution, West Bromwich Albion. Chris Brunt replaces Jake Livermore.

Ahmed El Mohamady (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Harvey Barnes (West Bromwich Albion).

Attempt missed. Tammy Abraham (Aston Villa) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Anwar El Ghazi with a cross.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Jack Grealish (Aston Villa) because of an injury.

Hand ball by Anwar El Ghazi (Aston Villa).

Attempt missed. Yannick Bolasie (Aston Villa) header from very close range misses to the right. Assisted by Anwar El Ghazi with a cross.

Ahmed Hegazi (West Bromwich Albion) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

John McGinn (Aston Villa) wins a free kick in the attacking half.