Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill paid tribute to Scott Carson and Ashley Young after his side rode their luck before salvaging a 1-1 draw with Blackburn Rovers.
Carson saved David Bentley's penalty before Rovers took the lead and it was left to Young to grab a late equaliser for O'Neill's side.
The Villa boss said after the match: "At half-time we tried to get some more width to our game and Ashley into the game more.
"He produced a wonderful goal and we could have won it after that. Marlon (Harewood) had a header hit the bar, we had a disallowed goal and Ashley saw another free-kick just narrowly miss. But it wasn't to be.
"Scott made a great save from the penalty in the first half, although I've watched the incident again and I think it's a pretty harsh decision.
"If we'd been awarded a similar one at the other end, I would have counted myself very lucky. But we battled to a point and I was pleased to get something out of the game.
"We were stodgy at the start and didn't create enough chances. Blackburn flooded the midfield and it's their right to do that. But the onus is on us as the home side to try and break them down.
"Blackburn made it difficult for us. People forget that if they had hung on for the win, they would have been level on points with us.
"We had a chance to go fourth but that's gone now. These games are really tough."