EPL: Aston Villa Come out Winners on Lackluster Relegation Tuesday

Joe TanseyFeatured ColumnistNovember 27, 2012

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 27:  Brad Guzan of Aston Villa celebrates his team's first goal during the Barclays Premier league match between Aston Villa and Reading at Villa Park on November 27, 2012 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Scott Heavey/Getty Images)
Scott Heavey/Getty Images

Let Tuesday be known as Relegation Tuesday, the day on which the two matches in the English Premier League involved four clubs that are sure to be bogged down in the relegation zone for most of the season. 

For most of Tuesday's matches, there were no goals scored and the play on the pitch from all four clubs was horrible at best. 

Then, after 80 minutes of misery at Villa Park, Christian Benteke rescued all EPL fans worldwide from utter boredom by scoring a goal. 

Benteke headed home a cross from Ashley Westwood to give Aston Villa a much needed 1-0 win that boosted the club out of the bottom three and into 17th place for the time being. 

Villa's opponents on Tuesday, Reading, had a chance to go ahead in the 59th minute, but Adam Le Fondre's header went over the crossbar and out of play in what was the Royals' best chance to score. 

The match at Villa Park was an absolute thriller compared to the dull 0-0 draw at the Stadium of Light between Sunderland and QPR. 

The match was the first in charge for new QPR manager Harry Redknapp, and he saw his club struggle for most of the night with very few bright spots.

Adel Taarabt did have a strong performance in the first half, but the Moroccan faded fast and was substituted in the 78th minute as Shaun Wright-Philips replaced the winger. 

It was another substitute who had the biggest impact on the goalless draw, as QPR keeper Robert Green made a big save on Sunderland's Steven Fletcher in the 64th minute to preserve a clean sheet.

Green came on at halftime to replace the injured Julio Cesar, who had been the first-choice keeper at the club since his move from Inter Milan in the summer. 

Other than the chance from Fletcher in the second half, the Sunderland attack looked abysmal and it clearly needs improvement. 

The relegation race will take a break on Wednesday as the other 16 clubs in the EPL take to the pitch.

However, the battle for relegation will continue on Saturday when QPR host Aston Villa at Loftus Road in Redknapp's first home match since being named manager last weekend.

Reading will host Manchester United on Saturday, while Sunderland have to wait until Sunday to play when they visit Norwich City.