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West Ham beats Aston Villa after Nolan double

BIRMINGHAM, England (AP) West Ham moved out of the relegation zone on Saturday following its 2-0 away win over Aston Villa in the Premier League

Kevin Nolan struck twice in quick succession for the Hammers as they secured their first back-to-back victories in the league this season.

The visitors took the lead within seconds of the restart following a goalless first half. Winger Stewart Downing found Nolan inside the penalty area, and his improvised back heel beat Villa goalkeeper Brad Guzan.

The midfielder doubled his side's advantage in the 48th when he robbed midfielder Fabian Delph, before striding into the penalty area and slotting past Guzan.

Villa twice hit the woodwork through substitute Marc Albrighton and Christian Benteke but West Ham held on for the three points.

Updated February 8, 2014

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