Villa in drop zone

05 January 2011 10:30
Aston Villa dropped into the bottom three of the Barclays Premier League for the first time in seven years as their former loan signing Phil Bardsley earned Sunderland a 1-0 victory at Villa Park. Gerard Houllier's side slipped into the relegation zone on goal difference as a result of Wolves' shock victory over champions Chelsea at Molineux. Villa had striker Emile Heskey sent off for violent conduct before Bardsley's impressive decider from distance and then Black Cats substitute Boudewijn Zenden was given his marching orders for two bookable offences. A small section of Villa fans chanted "you are going to get sacked in the morning" towards Houllier after Bardsley had broken the deadlock. But the calls for Houllier to go were more intensified at the final whistle. The last time Villa were in such a lowly position was in November 2003 during David O'Leary's reign as manager. But Sunderland's second away win of the campaign keeps them on course for a European spot.

Source: PA