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Premier League

  • 22 October 2011
  • • 15:00
  • • Villa Park, Birmingham
  • Referee: P. Dowd
  • • Attendance: 34152
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Aston Villa - West Brom Preview: Baggies go in search of first win at Villa Park since 1982

The visitors come into the match on form having secured five points from their last three matches whilst the visitors finally lost their unbeaten record last weekend


PROBABLE LINEUPS

ASTON VILLA

Given
Hutton, Collins, Dunne, Warnock
Ireland, Petrov, Delph
Heskey, Bent, Agbonlahor

WEST BROM

Foster
Reid, Olsson, McAuley, Shorey
Scharner, Mulumbu,
Dorrans
Brunt, Long, Thomas

James Collins has handed Alex McLeish a fitness boost by returning to training after missing the Manchester City match with a groin injury. He is expected to return in place of Ciaran Clark.

Barry Bannan and Charles N’Zogbia will both be pushing for a starting place in the side having both come off the bench against City, and McLeish has said that summer signing Jermaine Jenas is around a month away from being available.

Roy Hodgson has a full squad to pick from, giving him choices in every position. Nicky Shorey will probably regain his place in the side from Billy Jones, but there are choices over which formation to pick, who to play in central midfield, whether to start with Peter Odemwingie and whether to recall James Morrison.


DID YOU KNOW?

  • In 67 league games at Aston Villa, the home side have 42 wins to West Brom’s 15
  • 1985 was a big year for these teams: they met six times in all competitions, it was the last time in the league there were more than three goals (at either ground) and it was the last time West Brom scored more than one goal at Villa Park
  • West Brom won 7-0 at Villa in 1935 whilst Villa defeated the Baggies 7-1… in 1899. The Baggies’ last win at Villa in all competitions was in 1982, and in the league it was 1979
  • West Brom have played five times at Villa Park in the Premier League era, drawing two and losing three. Villa won this fixture 2-1 last year
  • West Brom kept their third clean sheet of the season against Wolves, one more than they managed in the entirety of last season. Only Swansea, Manchester City and Stoke have more with four
  • Peter Odemwingie’s goal was the Baggies’ first in the second-half and Chris Brunt’s was the fifth in the opening 10 minutes
  • Win over Wolves was first time in 16 matches West Brom had won by more than one goal
  • Villa are unbeaten at home with two wins and two draws
  • Before last Saturday’s 4-1 loss to Manchester City, Villa had gone 10 Premier League games unbeaten
  • There will be a large Irish contingent in the match, with the home side boasting Shay Given, Richard Dunne and Stephen Ireland whilst the visitors have Gareth McAuley, Shane Long, Chris Brunt and Simon Cox in their ranks.
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Players to watch

G. Agbonlahor

Position: Attacker

Games: 10

  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
At 0-0 against City, Agbonlahor missed a great chance to open the scoring which is surprising considering he has begun the season in blistering form.

While it would be harsh to criticise the striker for one miss when he has done so well, he will want to put in another great performance against West Brom and remind Fabio Capello that Darren Bent isn’t the only Villa striker pushing for England honours.

S. Long

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0

Having tormented Roger Johnson and Christophe Berra last week, Long will still be wondering how he did not score. Still, the former Reading man outshone his international team-mate Kevin Doyle and has spoken publicly about being desperate to represent Ireland in the Euro 2012 qualifiers against Estonia.

With Doyle and Robbie Keane both likely to miss the first-leg, Long will hope to show he is the equal to Agbonlahor in this fixture and send another reminder to his international manager.

Editor's Prediction

Both teams have strikers in red-hot form, and although both defences have shown plenty of commitment this season, I cannot see either keeping a clean sheet this time around.

Villa have been largely uninspiring in the league this season, but will be content with how things are going. West Brom, though, are rising up the league after a slow start and will fancy ending their long wait for a win at Villa Park.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Aston Villa

West Bromwich Albion

Wins
2
1
2
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Aston Villa FC AST
Aston Villa FC Aston Villa
Draw
West Bromwich Albion FC WBA
West Bromwich Albion FC West Bromwich Albion
83%

Top 3 Predictions

Aston Villa FC AST
2 - 0
West Bromwich Albion FC WBA
Aston Villa FC AST
2 - 1
West Bromwich Albion FC WBA
Aston Villa FC AST
1 - 0
West Bromwich Albion FC WBA

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