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Aston Villa 2-2 Sunderland: Visitors battle back for point at Villa Park

Crystal Palace v Aston Villa - Premier League

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 22: Brad Guzan of Aston Villa during the Barclays Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Aston Villa at Selhurst Park on August 22, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images)

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  • M’Vila opens with gorgeous free kick
  • Villa answers with two goals
  • Jeremain Lens levels it up
  • U.S. teen Gooch unused on Sunderland bench

A back-and-forth affair between two already desperate sides ended with Sunderland and Aston Villa splitting the spoils at Villa Park on Saturday.

Yann M’Vila and Jeremain Lens scored for Sunderland, with Scott Sinclair striking twice for Aston Villa in between, as the two sides stagd a wide open affair at Villa Park.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

M’Vila’s early free kick was curling and glorious, working around the outside of the wall and past USMNT keeper Brad Guzan.

But Lee Cattermole NFL-tackled his mark in the box three minutes later to gift Villa a penalty that Sinclair would convert for the equalizer.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

3 - Jeremain Lens has two assists and one goal in four Premier League appearances. Microscope.

— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) August 29, 2015

Sinclair struck again before halftime, when he knocked in a good-looking, sweeping cross from Jordan Amavi.

New Sunderland signing Ola Toivonen subbed into the match and made an immediate impact after halftime, sending a ball to Lens. The Dutchman easily navigated a threat from Ciaran Clark before scoring with his left.

[ MORE: Click here for full lineups, stats, box score ]

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