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Republic of Ireland star Ciaran Clark sparks Villa comeback against Leicester


Ciaran Clark after scoring against Leicester

Ciaran Clark after scoring against Leicester

Ciaran Clark after scoring against Leicester

Alan Hutton bagged his first Aston Villa goal as they clinched a feisty 2-1 win over 10-man Leicester yesterday.

The right-back, who had been frozen out by manager Paul Lambert before this season, netted with 20 minutes left to cap their comeback.

Leonardo Ulloa ended his drought with his first goal in 10 games to put the Foxes ahead but Irish defender Ciarán Clark equalised within minutes.

And Paul Konchesky was sent off late on for Leicester after clashing with Hutton - who was lucky to stay on - to compound the visitors' woes.

It left Nigel Pearson's side rooted to the bottom of the Premier League and lifted resurgent Villa up to 11th.

The visitors took the lead on 13 minutes when Villa failed to shackle Riyad Mahrez and Guzan spilled his deflected effort straight to Ulloa who tapped in.

It was a gift but Villa levelled five minutes later when Clark was granted the freedom of the area to head in Ashley Westwood's free kick from six yards.

Mahrez shot wide as Leicester responded but Villa had the measure of a spirited, if limited, Foxes side who relied on the pace of Jamie Vardy to threaten.

And the striker was involved a flashpoint late in the half as tempers flared at Villa Park.

First, he clattered into Westwood - forcing the midfielder to be carried off - and was lucky to only receive a caution.

Villa completed their comeback on 70 minutes - following more shoddy defending from Foxes.

Benteke was given space and time to pick out the unmarked Hutton at the far post and the defender smashed past Kasper Schmeichel.

Benteke nearly added a third six minutes later, only to be thwarted again by Schmeichel's point blank save and from the corner the keeper stopped Clark's header.

And Leicester's hopes all but disappeared with 10 minutes left when Konchesky was dismissed.

The defender tackled Hutton and then clashed with the Villa man, who forced his head into Konchesky's before pushing him.

But to the Foxes' amazement, Konchesky was sent off while Hutton escaped with a yellow card and Villa held on.