AFC Bournemouth edged their way to victory, beating relegation rivals Aston Villa 2-1 after going a man down.
The Cherries started the game really well, going into half time with a 2-0 lead and looking comfortable after 45 minutes.
But after Jefferson Lerma was sent off in the 51st minute, the game turned on its head. Samatta got a goal back for Aston Villa and Dean Smith’s side were fighting for an equaliser right into the dying embers of the game.
Despite this, Bournemouth showed great composure and defensive quality, seeing out the match and taking a well-earned 3-points, even with their 1-man disadvantage.
The game kicked off with high intensity from the first whistle, with both teams being held at deadlock for 36 minutes and plenty of chances falling the way of both sides.
Aston Villa looked most likely to go ahead after a dangerous cross from Jack Grealish was drilled in but ultimately wasn’t converted. The Cherries then fired back with a chance of their own, almost immediately after, as Dan Gosling’s first time shot from a cross just flew over the bar at the other end.
It was Eddie Howe’s side that broke the deadlock, though, as Bournemouth’s relentless pressure was rewarded when a ball in from Dan Gosling was neatly converted by the Cherries’ Danish midfielder, Philip Billing in the 36th minute.
The home side kept their foot on the gas, too, pushing for a second goal right up until half-time and the chance did eventually fall to them when Aston Villa’s Pepe Reina Spilled a cross from a free-kick.
Centre Back Nathan Ake got to the loose ball first, putting his team 2-0 up and in good stead just before the half time whistle.
The momentum seemed to shift in the second half, and Villa came out fighting, obviously inspired by Dean Smith’s halftime team talk.
The away side’s pressure seemed to be working, too, as they forced a foul from Bournemouth’s Jefferson Lerma, resulting in the Columbian Midfielder’s second Yellow card of the game and giving Villa the advantage as the Cherries were reduced to 10 men in the 51st minute.
The Lions then capitalised on this advantage, netting a goal 19 minutes later, as Mbwanna Samatta slotted a dead ball away, bringing his team back into the game with 20 minutes still to play.
The following 10 minutes was all in the way of Aston Villa, as the away side created chance after chance, with Grealish firing wide and substitute Kienan Davis finding himself through on goal only to be denied by a confident Aaron Ramsdale.
The Cherries looked close to blowing their lead on several occasions, but it was them who got the last chance of the game, when a loose ball fell to Callum Wilson on the break in the 94th minute.
The counter attack looked certain to result in a goal when the front man squared the ball to Ryan Fraser, who despite coming under criticism for his commitment to the club recently, had a very impressive game.
The Scotsman just needed to get contact on the ball to score but failed to do so and AFC Bournemouth remained in front.
Despite the relentless pressure from Aston Villa, Bournemouth’s two first-half goals were enough for them to seal the 3 points they needed to move out of the relegation zone and extend their premier league form to two wins in a row.
The Cherries will hope to continue this momentum when they face Sheffield United at Bramall Lane next Sunday.