Monday 25 November 2013
Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert praised his side's second-half performance after they rescued a 2-2 draw against West Bromwivch Albion in the Barclays Premier League’s Monday night match.
The visitors slipped two goals behind at The Hawthorns after a first-half double from Shane Long, but Karim El Ahmadi and Ashley Westwood struck back after the interval to rescue a draw in the West Midlands derby.
Lambert was proud of the renewed energy shown by his side after the break.
"The second half we were fantastic," he said. "We were terrific the way we got going, really resolute.
"To be fair, in the first half we were down 2-0 in the first 10 minutes and were just thinking we need to hang in until half-time. "Second half, they [my players] were outstanding.
Lambert introduced Fabian Delph, Andreas Weimann and Gabriel Agbonlahor 12 minutes into the second period, and was quick to praise the contribution to the fightback from the trio who had returned form injuries.
"We spoke about it [the triple substitution] and thought we had to get them on pretty quickly," he said. "We were actually going to wait a bit longer, but we thought we needed to get a goal.
"The three of them made a huge contribution. All credit to the three of them. They only started training on Friday [after returning from injury] and they were outstanding.
"I don’t think anybody can label our team for lack of character. Especially here in this atmosphere. I've got nothing but praise for them.”
The Scot reserved special praise for Westwood, whose equaliser was his first goal in the Barclays Premier League for Villa.
" Westy took the game by the scruff of the neck,” Lambert said. “His strike was fabulous. He was terrific for us."
West Bromwich Albion 2-2 Aston Villa | #WBAAVL | Matchday Live >>
For a full report, to follow the match unfolded, the best photos and stats as well as Steve Clarke's reactions click on the Matchday Live link above.