FT: Sunderland 0 Aston Villa 1

Thanks for all your comments today folks! Don't forget, you can always follow me on Twitter: @RazMirza to send me your views so speak to you all soon!

Paddy emails in to say: "As a Villa fan I am far than happy with the depth of our squad - however under Lambert at least we are conceding much less and we do have some good youngsters. We need to score more goals and but I think we will just survive the season..especially if Benteke settles well and bangs a few in for us."

Adam Smith Tweets: "O'Neill needs an assistant manger! You can see he's struggling without one."

Jak Batty Tweets: "Come on villa 3 points we safe then for the tought teams coming up then some 3 pointers come on Villa lads."

FULL TIME: Aston Villa record their first Premier League away victory since January as they get the better of former manager Martin O'Neill. In the battle of the lowest scorers just a single goal from Gabby Agbonlahor - his first since last November - settled the contest.

It's like the Alamo deep in stoppage time as Villa look to counter-attack through Agbonlahor. They win a throw as the clock ticks down!

SO CLOSE!!! James McClean's cross is headed inches wide by Frazier Campbell.

There will be four added minutes of stoppage time at the Stadium of Light!

YELLOW CARD: Steven Fletcher shows his frustration by bringing down the brillaint Barry Bannan.

Graham Trotter emails in to say: "People need to lay off Martin O'Neill at the end of the day if the players aren't playing what can he do!!! O'Neill is the best thing at Sunderland."

The pressure is mounting as Sunderland pile men forward. This time there are three players caught offside.

SUBSTITUTION: Brett Holman replaces Andreas Weimann as Villa make there final change.

GREAT SAVE!!! Sunderland win a corner and Brad Guzan makes a super double save to deny Lee Cattermole and then Steven Fletcher, who was in fact offside.

Alisha Morrison Tweets: "Mignolet ... unbelievable tekkers!! How did that stay out!!" It certainly was great stuff from the No 1.

SUBSTITUTION: Striker Frazier Campbell replaces Phil Bardsley and Seb Larsson takes up his fourth position of the afternoon.

YELLOW CARD: Christian Benteke is booked by referee Mick Jones for a foul on John O'Shea.

WOW!! An overhead clearance from goalkeeper Simon Mignolet! Brave stuff from the shot-stopper, who flicked a dodgy backpass up in the air before clearing, but Ireland should have returned the ball with interest.

Weimann should really have sealed the points and will that miss come back to haunt Villa.

WHAT A CHANCE!!! Stephen Ireland picks out Andreas Weimann but the Austrian can only hit the ball straight down the throat of Simon Mignolet.

David Brown emails: "Time for Martin Oneil to start putting out resumes!"

I've just seen more than a few home supporters leaving! Surely a bit too early at 1-0 down?

SO CLOSE!!! Seb Larsson's free-kick from the right is inviting, but substitute Louis Saha heads over the crossbar with a great chance for the hosts.

SUBSTITUTE: A debut for Enda Stevens as he replaces the sub Eric Lichaj.

Ian Bell is unhappy with Sunderland's showing today. He emails me to say: "Sunderland woeful this season, another game without a shot on target (so far) - no attacking quality except Johnson. Championship next season."

Twenty minutes remaining at the Stadium of Light and it's up to Martin O'Neill side to do the attacking now as Villa sit back and counter-attack.

YELLOW CARD: Ciaran Clark is punished for a dangerous looking challenge from behind.

SUBSTITUTIONS: James McClean and Louis Saha replace Craig Gardner and Stephane Sessegnon for Sunderland.

Barry Bannan makes a superb block to deny Adam Johnson's cross meeting his target.

PENALTY CLAIM!!! John O'Shea is furious after his header flicks the hand of Christian Benteke. Replays show the ball did hit him on both hands but referee Mick Jones waved play on.

Steven Fletcher is receing some medical attention as Sunderland get ready to take a corner.

Daniel Smiles on Twitter says: "Relegation season for Sunderland."

Thumping tackle from Ashley Westwood on Craig Gardner in the middle of the park. The former Crewe skipper has really impressed today.

The striker is back on the field for Villa now and it's the away fans up in the heavens who are singing.

That's Agbonlahor's first goal in 29 Premier League games. His last goal came last November against Paul Lambert's Norwich. A whole year! He took a knock as he scored by Carlos Cuellar and needed some medical attention.

Breakthrough for the Villa and they score against the run of play too. Matt Lowton's delivery from the right is headed back by the giant Christian Benteke and Gabby Agbonlahor is there in the six-yard box to slam the ball into the roof of the net.


The ball bounces around in the box before Ron Vlaar hammers clear.

Adam Johnson turns inside and out before winning his side a corner.

The atmosphere has really picked up at the Stadium of Light now as real urgency is being shown from the hosts.

Stephane Sessegnon loses out from the short corner and now Seb Larsson heads over the crossbar as Guzan attempted to tip the ball aaway from goal.

Now Phil Bardsley's flat cross is headed out for a corner to Sunderland.

Jack Colback's delivery from the right is a beauty but Eric Lichaj defends it superbly as he chests the ball back to Brad Guzan.

Carlos Cuellar's poor pass is picked off by Christian Benteke, before the striker's pass goes astray.

Villa fan Adam Bernard Tweets: "This point is ours for the taking! A thrilling 0-0 with excitement on an almost McLeishian level."

Steven Fletcher turns past his marker before looking to get his instant shot away, although it's well wide of the mark.

Daniel Smiles Tweets: "We (Sunderland) always draw something needs to be done about our tactical defence is fine just tactical."

Aston Villa get the second half underway, but they know they haven't scored an away goal in the second period of a Premier League game since January.

If you had a flutter on the amount of corners in this match, then I'm sure you would have won a few quid because the first half was littered with them as the sides come out for the second period.

Don't forget, if you'd like to air your views during the second half, email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

Sunderland are now 5/4 to claim victory with @Skybet, who make Aston Villa 7/2 and the draw 5/4. My pre-match prediction of 1-1, which was priced at a steady 5/1 is now 6/1. Head now to SKYBET to place your bets on this match.

HALF TIME: Goalless at the break at the Stadium of Light. Villa have played the better football and Christian Benteke has been a threat in attack. Ciaran Clark's tackle on Stephane Sessegnon was one of the moments of the half, while Lee Cattermole came close with an effort from the edge of the box. Adam Johnson has been the Black Cats' standout player.

YELLOW CARD: Eric Lichaj is booked for kicking the ball away when everybody in the stadium seem shocked that Gabby Agbonlahor did not receive it for a late tackle.

An untidy and scrappy end to the half. Both defences have been on top while there has been very little in terms of atmosphere.

Three minutes of added time at the end of this first-half.

Phil Bardsley wins his side a free-kick about 40-yards out and Larsson looks to find former Villa man Carlos Cuellar, but the visitors clear.

However, Stephane Sessegnon fouls Ashley Westwood but moments later the home team come forward again, but Seb Larsson's attempted curler is well wide.

Barry Bannan hacks the ball away and now Sunderland win a throw as the pressure mounts in these closing minutes.

I did forget to mention Ciaran Clark, who steps in to win the ball back for Villa.

Ashley Westwood and Matt Lowton have impressed for Villa today, but the latter's delivery from the right is poor as he gets it all wrong.

Have faith Michael! Andreas Weimann cuts inside before seeing his shot from the edge of the box held easily by Simon Mignolet.

Michael Cole is not enjoying the action. He says: "This game is destined for a draw..most likely a 0-0 draw."

Villa counter though as Matt Lowton wins the ball back and Ireland plays a one-two with Benteke before the Belgian opts not to strike the ball on the volley and is eventually crowded out.

Stephen Ireland fails to control the ball in the middle of the park and that allows Sunderland to attack the Villa backline.

Barry Bannan's inswinger looks for Christian Benteke yet again, but the big man can't direct his header towards goal.

YELLOW CARD: Phil Bardsley is booked for pulling Gabby Agbonlahor to the ground.

Adam Johnson is the main danger man for the hosts at the moment. He's causing Villa all sorts of problems.

Stephane Sessegnon - who hasn't scored in his last 20 matches stretching back to March - heads the cross over.

SO CLOSE!!! So near for Sunderland as Adam Johnson picks out Lee Cattermole on the edge of the area, but his right-footed effort just misses the far post. He hasn't scored in four years!

WHAT A TACKLE!!! Ciaran Clark wins the ball after a crunching block tackle on Stephane Sessegnon inside the six-yard box.

Saying that, Adam Johnson does win his side a corner after some good build-up work.

Villa seem the more confident team right now and that midweek Capital One Cup win probably has something to do with that while Sunderland seem devoid of ideas.

Eric Lichaj fouls his man near the corner flag, but Adam Johnson's attempted delivery hits the one man wall.

Stephen Ireland catches Lee Cattermole from behind and referee Mick Jones gives him a warning.

Larsson is an ex-Birmingham player, as is Craig Gardner, whose effort towards goal trickles wide.

At the other end, the hosts win a free-kick down the near touchline, but Seb Larsson's outswinger hits the corner flag on the far side.

Meanwhile, Matt Lowton wins Villa's sixth corner of the match and we've only played 20 minutes. It's becoming a familiar sight as Bannan attempts to find Benteke, but once again, Sunderland clear.

At the other end Sudnerland win a free-kick and although Adam Johnson's delivery is a good one, Brad Guzan holds on.

CHANCE VILLA!!! Christian Benteke is the target again, but the ball misses him. However, Agbonlahor does get it, but his shot is deflected away. It seemed he had all the time in the world to pick his spot, but he panicked.

Gabby Agbonlahor shows fine pace on the outside before winning yet another corner.

After young Joe Bennett was substituted earlier, he threw his shirt down with anger as he went down the tunnel. Possibly just upset he was injured rather than a gesture to Lambert.

Stuart McCarthy Tweets: "I hope I'm wrong but I can see my Villa losing by 2, maybe even 3 today. Our squad just looks far too depleted. Come on the Villa."

The Belgium international is a man in form scoring 11 goals in 22 games for clubs and country.

Barry Bannan's delivery is met by the towering Christian Benteke, but he fails to direct his header.

Matt Lowton claims a handball against a Sunderland defender, but they will have to settle for another corner.

SUBSTITUTION: Eric Lichaj replaces the injured Joe Bennett for Villa then.

Bennett has taken his shirt off and Villa are ready to replace him. Looks like a gamble which has gone wrong for Lambert!

Now Phil Bardsley catches young Joe Bennett, who used to play his football for Middlesbrough. The full-back is in trouble here!

Christian Benteke does well to keep the ball in play, but then Sunderland clear Ashley Westwood's cross.

Phil Bardsley gifts Villa a corner after attempting to give the ball back to his keeper. Matt Lowton attempts a volley from the edge of the box, but it deflects away for another corner on the other side.

That was a wonderful move by the home side and Adam Johnson started the move with a defence splitting pass.

OFFSIDE!!! Stephane Sessegnon picks out Steven Fletcher, who is clean through and although he tucks the ball past Brad Guzan, the flag is up on the near side.

This is certainly an attacking line-up from Villa with Andreas Weimann, Gabby Agbonlahor and Christian Benteke all starting. Paul Lambert has freshened things up for this game.

Villa have made their worst start to a season since 1969 when they were relegated to the old division three. They have won none of their last 13 Premier League away matches (W0 D5 L8) going into this clash.

Stephane Sessegnon gets his first touch of the ball down the near side, but it's a poor one and the ball drifts out for a goalkick to Villa.

Villa are wearing their luminous green shirts and black shorts, while Sunderland kick-off wearing their traditional colours.

We're just about ready for kick-off at a packed Stadium of Light. Let's hope for a good one.

Yep Brian, Villa have the two Manchester clubs and Arsenal to come this month. Won't look good if they fail to get anything out of this game.

Brian Cook emails in to say: "I just canot see Villa winning even though we have three attakers, Benteke, Agbonlahor & Weimann. I suppose law of averages we have to win sometimes. The Bent issue is strange it needs a clear the air statement. If we lose I think we are really in the mire with the rest of our November fixtures. I suppose I will be happy with a draw."

As we approach kick-off fans, don't forget, if you'd like to air your views before or during the match, email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

And a regular Black Cats' Tweeter Alisha Morrison says: "Stood in the stadium waitin' for kick off 'haway the lads'!!!!" Give us a wave Alisha!

Lesley kay on Twitter says: "Sunderland Fans have lowered their expectations now but hoping for a 1-0 win today. Fletcher to score."

Dave, did you see this bust-up between Lambert and Bent then? It's a shame not to see him up against his old club today mind. You know what they say about players going back to their old clubs ... they always tend to score! Maybe Villa are missing a trick if you think he's really been dropped from the squad.

Dave Birch simply does not believe Darren Bent has a foot injury. He argues: "Hi Raz, absolutely no truth what-so-ever about Bent being injured, it's simply because he's fell out with Lambert and he's been dropped. Can't say we haven't got an attacking team out today that's for sure, think we'll have to much for the Mackems and it's a Villa win for me. 0-2 with Benteke and Gabby scoring."

John McKnight senses another bad result for Villa today. He says: "A terrible start on the year for Villa! They are playing like they want to go to relegation? They must do better or go down."

Aniekan reckons this will be an easy home win for the hosts: "Sunderland to win this one 2-0 they are set to be impressive this season despite the start they've. Just need a win now to get things going and what better way to do it than an unstable villa side and at the Stadium of Light."

Marcus from Leamington Spa is first to write in this afternoon and he says: "Sunderland will breath a huge sigh of relief today when they beat Aston Villa 2-1 the final score."

Sunderland are 11/10 to claim victory with our friends @Skybet, who make Aston Villa 5/2 and the draw 23/10. No guessing that Sunderland's Steven Fletcher is favourite to bag the first goal of the afternoon at 4/1 and is 5/1 to score a brace. He's evens to score at anytime at the Stadium of Light. Adam Johnson is a 7/1 shout while Sebastian Larsson is 9/2 score in 90 minutes. Villa's Christian Benteke has been in sensational form for Villa of late and he's well worth a flutter at 8/1 to score first. Gabriel Agbonlahor is 10/1 to score first while Stephen Ireland is 11/2 to score in 90 minutes. Seven of Villa's nine league games this season have gone under 2.5 goals. Six of Sunderland's have gone under 2.5 goals, so I'm hedging my bets and going for a draw - 1-1, which is priced at a steady 5/1. Head now to SKYBET to place your bets on this match.

Villa manager Paul Lambert restores Brad Guzan, Joe Bennett, Ciaran Clark and Ashley Westwood to his team following the 3-2 midweek cup victory at Swindon, but there is no place in the 18 for Sunderland old boy Darren Bent, who did not travel to Wearside due to a foot injury sustained during training on Friday.

Sunderland boss Martin O'Neill keeps faith with his misfiring flair players as the Black Cats attempt to bounce back to winning ways. Steven Fletcher, Stephane Sessegnon and Adam Johnson all retain their places as Keiren Westwood, David Vaughan and Louis Saha make way for Simon Mignolet, Craig Gardner and Sebastian Larsson in the wake of Tuesday night's Capital One Cup exit at the hands of neighbours Middlesbrough.

SUNDERLAND: Mignolet, Bardsley, Cattermole, Larsson, Gardner, Colback, O'Shea, Johnson, Cuellar, Fletcher, Sessegnon.

SUBSTITUTES: Rose, Campbell, Kilgallon, Vaughan, Westwood, McClean, Saha.

ASTON VILLA: Guzan, Lowton, Bennett, Vlaar, Clark, Westwood, Bannan, Ireland, Weimann, Agbonlahor, Benteke.

SUBSTITUTES: Given, Albrighton, Holman, Delph, Stevens, Lichaj, Bowery.

REFEREE: Mick Jones (Cheshire). (Matches 5, Red Cards 0, Yellow Cards 22).

Here come the teams...

Darren Bent has been ruled out of the game with a foot injury Villa fans, so it looks like Agbonlahor and Benteke will get another chance to impress in attack. What do you think the outcome will be today? Email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish the best.

Villa, meanwhile, are currently languishing down in 17th posiiton on six points and without an away win since January. Left-back Joe Bennett will return from a one-match suspension following his sending-off against Norwich. But, midfielder Karim El Ahmadi will have to serve a one-game ban after incurring his fifth booking of the season during the cracking midweek Capital One Cup win at Swindon. Central defender Chris Herd is a fitness doubt after being substituted with a knee injury at the County Ground.

So what do you think Sunderland fans ... get in touch we me if you think O'Neill is starting to feel the pressure at the Stadium of Light? If you've got a scoreline for today's match against his former club, then send it in! Email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

Martin O'Neill mounted a stringent defence of his troops during his pre-match press conference, pointing out that they've lost just once in the league this season - and that was to defending champions Manchester City.

Sunderland lost 1-0 to north east rivals Middlesbrough on Tuesday night in the Capital One Cup and manager Martin O'Neill is likely to make several changes to his starting line-up for today's clash. The Black Cats have only one win and six draws from their opening eight fixtures and striker Steven Fletcher has been involved in every goal Sunderland have scored this season barring the own goal from Newcastle's Demba Ba in the Wear-Tyne derby.

The out-of-form Black Cats are looking to halt a nightmare run that's seen them win just once in 16 Premier League games stretching back to March. They are the lowest scorers in the top four divisions in England and been undone by six draws in eight matches and a shocking lack of creativity in front of goal.

If you'd like to air your views before or during the match, email Raz...that's me! at razwan.mirza@bskyb.com or Tweet me: @RazMirza and I'll publish as many as I can.

Hello and welcome to our live minute-by-minute text commentary of this Premier League clash between Sunderland and Aston Villa from the Stadium of Light.

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