VILLA EN­JOY FIRST WIN UN­DER BRUCE AS NEW­CAS­TLE GO TOP

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SPORTS -

AS­TON VILLA en­joyed their first vic­tory un­der man­ager Steve Bruce – and their first since Au­gust–- as a late Jor­dan Ayew penalty saw them to a 2-1 win away to Read­ing in the English Cham­pi­onship yes­ter­day. For­mer Manchester United de­fender Bruce’s first game in charge, af­ter he re­placed the sacked Roberto Di Mat­teo as man­ager of the 1982 Euro­pean cham­pi­ons, saw his side scrape a 11 home draw with Wolves on Satur­day. Yes­ter­day’s match saw Birm­ing­ham club Villa, rel­e­gated from the Pre­mier League last sea­son, take the lead near the end of the first half through Jonathan Kod­jia. But Read­ing equalised early in the sec­ond half when Yann Ker­mo­gant headed in the re­bound af­ter Danny Wil­liams’s penalty had been saved by Pier­luigi Gollini. It looked as the match would end in a draw but sub­sti­tute Ayew was fouled by Liam Moore in­side the penalty area in the 90th minute. He then got up to score the en­su­ing penalty, his goal end­ing Villa’s run of 10 Cham­pi­onship matches with­out a win. Mean­while New­cas­tle, also rel­e­gated last sea­son, went to the top of the ta­ble as Dwight Gayle scored twice in a 2-0 win at Barns­ley. Gayle’s dou­ble took his tally for the sea­son to 11 goals and New­cas­tle man­ager Rafael Ben­itez said: “When you have play­ers as clin­i­cal as Dwight, you will score goals. “The team played well and cre­ated chances. His job is to be there, fight­ing with the cen­tre-back and try to score if he gets a chance. He is on fire now, he is happy and we’re all happy.”

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