Darren Bent’s double and an inspired display from Gabriel Agbonlahor secured Aston Villa victory over a spirited Norwich City at Villa Park.
Anthony Pilkington’s free-kick had given the away side the lead, but Agbonlahor set up Bent, before tapping in a second after Leon Barnett’s error.
Bent all but confirmed the win after another Agbonlahor assist, but Steve Morison’s powerful header set up a grand-stand finale.
Norwich’s late recovery against Blackburn Rovers proved they were a force to be reckoned with in the Barclays Premier League, while Villa were yet to settle under Alex McLeish.
And early on against the Cannaries, Villa failed to make an impression and went behind courtesy of Pilkington’s rasping free-kick.
The goal sparked Villa into life and five minutes later they were level as Bent finished following Agbonlahor’s run.
The hosts had toiled to get level, but they were handed the lead on a plate as Barnett’s poor backpass allowed Agbonlahor to intercept and tap into an empty net.
McLeish’s men appeared to secure the points mid-way through the second half as Agbonlahor again teed up the clinical Bent, who made no mistake.
The visitors’ fighting spirit was clear for all to see again in the final ten minutes as Grant Holt’s deep cross found Morison.
But any comeback similar to that of last week against Blackburn didn’t materialise as Villa snatched the three points.
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