West Ham move out of bottom three with Villa draw

Ollie Watkins of Aston Villa scores the opening goal during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Aston Villa at London Stadium on March 12, 2023 in London, United Kingdom. 

West Ham earned a point against Aston Villa which saw David Moyes’ struggling side move out of the Premier League relegation places on goal difference.

Villa striker Ollie Watkins continued his impressive form as he broke the deadlock with a 17th-minute header from left-back Alex Moreno’s sublime cross for his sixth goal in seven games.

The lively Said Benrahma took his opportunity to respond for the hosts from the penalty spot nine minutes later, firing his spot-kick out of reach of World Cup winner Emiliano Martinez after Leon Bailey’s foul on Lucas Paqueta.

Benrahma was the standout attacking threat on either side at London Stadium but the winger saw a powerful strike from distance tipped over by Martinez in the second half among his match-leading 10 shots on goal.

Denied again by Ashley Young’s last-ditch block the Algeria international was unable to inspire the hosts to victory – although the point was enough to take West Ham above Bournemouth, who beat Liverpool on Saturday, to 17th in the standings.

Aston Villa, whose appeals for a penalty of their own were dismissed by the video assistant referee following Declan Rice’s challenge on Emiliano Buendia, remain 11th.

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