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Aston Villa in Championship playoff final

Aston Villa in Championship playoff final

LONDON, May 15: Aston Villa needed penalties to beat West Bromwich Albion on Tuesday night to progress to the Championship playoff final at Wembley. Despite losing the second leg 1-0, Villa beat the home side 4-3 on penalties to take them one game away from a return to the Premier League. Following their 2-1 victory over the Baggies on Saturday afternoon, Villa knew that avoiding defeat would book their place at Wembley for the second consecutive year. West Brom, meanwhile, knew that nothing but a win would do. Despite the tension on both sides, it was a largely uneventful first half before Craig Dawson leapt highest from a long throw to nod the ball into the far corner with a little help from the woodwork. The goal inspired the Baggies for the second half, as they came out firing for the second period and began to apply serious pressure. The chances began to pile up for the home side, as Matty Phillips and Chris Brunt both went close, and there looked like being only one winner. The tie took another dramatic twist, as the experienced Chris Brunt earned himself a second booking, reducing his side to ten men for the second game in a row. From then on, Villa took control and were agonisingly close to winning the match when Albert Adomah's close-range effort was magnificently saved by Sam Johnstone.

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