Everton - Aston Villa Preview: Villans eyeing first win since December
The fixture pits two teams with different ambitions, with the Toffees targeting a top four finish whilst the visitors attempt to pull themselves out of the bottom three
By John Christodoulou
Neville, Jagielka, Heitinga, Baines
Mirallas, Osman, Fellaini, Pienaar
Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, Bennett
N'Zogbia, Westwood, Ireland
Seamus Coleman (thigh) and Tony Hibbert (calf) are still unavailable for selection for David Moyes, however Darron Gibson is available after recovering from a groin injury and coming off the bench in the victory over West Brom.
Richard Dunne could return for the Villans and should prove a welcome boost for Paul Lambert’s defensively frail side. However they will still be without the injured Marc Albrighton and Chris Herd (both foot), Gary Gardner (knee), while Fabian Delph is a doubt with an ankle injury.
Lambert could also call upon the services of new signing Yacouba Sylla, the £2 million January signing from Clermont Foot will hopefully provide some more steel to the Villa midfield.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Aston Villa have not won a Premier League game since the December 15 when they beat Liverpool 3-1.
- The Villans have only won two points from a possible 21 in their last seven games.
- Lamberts men have failed to score in ten league games, more than any other team in the top flight.
- Villa have also conceded 44 goals, more than any other Premier League club this season.
- Everton have the joint third best defensive record in the league alongside Swansea, but bettered by Manchester City and Chelsea.
- Marouane Fellaini has committed the most fouls in the Premier League with 47, while Steven Pienaar is the most fouled player, having been felled 52 times.
- The last time these two clubs met, Everton ran out comfortable winners with a 3-1 victory.
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Top 3 Predictions
Everton 2-0 Aston Villa
- 14.95 %
Everton 3-1 Aston Villa
- 14.24 %
Everton 2-1 Aston Villa
- 11.74 %
|Premier League (EPL)||1 Feb 2014||Everton 2 - Aston Villa 1|
|Premier League (EPL)||26 Oct 2013||Aston Villa 0 - Everton 2|
|Premier League (EPL)||2 Feb 2013||Everton 3 - Aston Villa 3|
|Premier League (EPL)||25 Aug 2012||Aston Villa 1 - Everton 3|
|Premier League (EPL)||14 Jan 2012||Aston Villa 1 - Everton 1|
|20 Apr 2014||Everton 2 - Manchester United 0||EPL|
|16 Apr 2014||Everton 2 - Crystal Palace 3||EPL|
|12 Apr 2014||Sunderland 0 - Everton 1||EPL|
|6 Apr 2014||Everton 3 - Arsenal FC 0||EPL|
|30 Mar 2014||Fulham 1 - Everton 3||EPL|
|8||Karim El Ahmadi||Midfielder|
|21||Jordan Nathaniel Bowery||Striker|
David Moyes has done well to fend off interest for the towering Belgian during the January transfer window, and now he’ll be hoping the box-to-box midfielder can replicate some of his early season form to help the Toffees push for fourth spot. His presence, power and strength will be a real handful for Villa’s young team and could prove the difference between the sides.
The powerful 21-year-old is the one shining light for Paul Lambert’s side this season and if they are to avoid being dragged into a relegation scrap, he will have to be at his best spearheading the Villans' attacking line. The summer signing has all the attributes to cause the Everton defence problems if his team can provide him with the service and support he requires.
It has been nine league games since Aston Villa last kept a clean sheet and that doesn't look like it will change anytime soon. The Toffees could prove too powerful for this Villa team and should be able to win comfortably at home.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed