Agbonlahor scored just after the half hour to give Villa the lead with Bent adding a second 15 minutes into the second half to maintain their unbeaten start to the season and leave them 6th in the league table. The strike duo were too hot to handle for Wigan who have now lost four in a row and took 71 minutes before calling Shay Given into action between the Villa sticks. Roberto Martinez will be disappointed that his side failed to fully test the home side despite winning 10 corners and having 10 efforts on goal with Victor Moses the best of a bad bunch. Their profligate nature in front of goal highlighted how important it is to take chances in the top flight and they were taught a lesson in how to finish by Agbonlahor and Bent.
Last week’s goalscorer Barry Bannan was heavily involved in everything good about Villa’s play and is certainly showing why Alex McLeish is showing so much faith in him. The Scotland midfielders passing and technical ability was a joy to behold and his pass that set up the opening goal. Steven Warnock dispossessed Mohamed Diame with the ball finding Bannan who curled a wonderful pass into the path of Agbonlahor with the striker cutting in from the left past Gary Caldwell and lashing the ball into the roof of the net for his fourth of the campaign. That was as good as it got for Villa in the first half before Bent added a second goal after the restart.
His movement proved to be too much for the Latics defence and he should have scored just after the whistle with Ali Al Habsi pushing his fierce strike away from danger. The visitors keeper was a busy man and he had to be on top form to deny Bannan and Stiliyan Petrov before he was finally beaten by Bent. Agbonlahor was the architect bursting down the left wing and crossed for Bent who showed great poise and technique to volley the ball home.
That seemed to spark Wigan into life and should have at least claimed a consolation but just couldn’t find a way past Given. The Republic of Ireland keeper got down brilliantly to tip away Moses’ deflected effort before gathering Franco Di Santo’s strike with ease as the Latics slid to 17th in the table. It’s a defeat that will give the Martinez something to chew over during the international break whilst McLeish will be happy his side have ended a run of four draws on the spin.