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Sunderland 3-1 Aston Villa: Defoe’s brace piles misery on Villans

  • Gil scores wondergoal in loss
  • Defoe with brace, Van Aanholt scores
  • Villans still dead last
  • Sunderland within four of 17th place

Jermain Defoe scored twice and Patrick van Aanholt also netted to move Sunderland within four points of safety, and further batter Aston Villa’s survival hopes in a 3-1 win at the Stadium of Light on Saturday.

Carles Gil scored a gorgeous goal for Villa, which remains 20th with just 8 points.

The Black Cats stay in 19th, with 15 points.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

Jordan Veretout’s sliding shot at the far post nearly got Villa on the board in the eighth minute, but Vito Mannone was able to make the save. Leandro Bacuna sent in the cross.

The Black Cats took the lead when Van Aanholt’s left-footed shot took a turn off a sliding Micah Richards to wrongfoot Brad Guzan. 1-0, 30'.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

500 - Aston Villa’s Carles Gil has just scored the 500th Premier League goal of 2015-16. Landmark.

— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) January 2, 2016


[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Gil leveled things for Villa with a fantastic side volley finish off a right-to-left cross from Adama Traore, who had danced his way free to make the good-looking pass.

It would only be level for a bit, as Defoe took down a cross just inside the 18 and beat Guzan near post. The USMNT goalkeeper is struggling of late.

Follow @NicholasMendola