AMSTERDAM – Brad Guzan and Aston Villa squandered an early lead to suffer their sixth consecutive Premier League loss on Saturday, falling 2-1 to guests Stoke City on a stoppage time penalty kick.
Despite notching four saves and two cross captures, the US No. 1 saw his side's league win drought reach 11 games. The Villans slipped a spot to 19th place in the process. Geoff Cameron missed out through red card suspension for Stoke, who currently sit in 10th place.
One league below in the Championship, Eric Lichaj shined at right back as suddenly warming Nottingham Forest scored a 4-1 home victory over 10-man Bolton, who also lost Tim Ream to injury in the first half.
Lichaj posted a game-best four tackles to go with five clearances, three pass interceptions and a pair of cross blocks. In addition, the defender completed 22 of 26 passes, with 10 of them forward connections in or into the attacking half. Thanks to their third win in four, Forest climbed to ninth place.
It was a far rougher day for Wanderers, who saw both Ream and netminder Andrew Lonergan stretchered off during the opening period. The American left on 34 minutes with a suspected concussion after colliding with the post while defending a set piece. Thanks to successive defeats for the first time since early October, Bolton dropped to 19th in the table.
Elsewhere, Daniel Williams ably patrolled the center of the park in Reading's 1-0 win away to title chasers Ipswich Town.
The US midfielder completed 20 of 25 passes with just one handling turnover, while adding two tackles and a blocked shot at the defensive end. The Royals halted a two-game slide to reach 13th place.
Jonathan Spector went the distance as Birmingham City fell a missed spot kick short in their 4-3 loss at Brighton Hove & Albion. The Brums center back pitched in with four clearances and three tackles. Now winless in eight, the visitors fell to 15th place.
Turning to the Bundesliga, Timothy Chandler and 10-man Eintracht Frankfurt lost for the first time in four games, 3-1 at Mainz 05.
The Eintracht right back took part in the play that earned the free kick from which they bagged the opening goal, but a pair of 'keeper gaffes on either side of intermission turned the contest. Chandler also logged five clearances, three pass interceptions and a cross block for the ninth-place visitors.
Over in Austria, Conor O'Brien and Wiener Neustadt squandered a two-goal lead at halftime before eventually rallying late for a 3-3 share at Sturm Graz. The central midfielder rang up seven tackles and five pass picks as the cellar dwellers snapped a two-game losing streak to pull to within two points off the safety zone.
Finally, on the first night of Svenska Cupen group play, Heath Pearce watched on from the away dugout as IFK Göteborg blew a two-goal lead after the hour to settle for a 2-2 draw at fourth flight mites FC Trollhättan.