Liverpool - Aston Villa Preview: Suarez returns as Reds look for third win on the trot

Two managers who exceeded expectations at newly-promoted clubs last season come face to face in charge of their new sides, with both in need of a win after disappointing starts

Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Downing
Sterling, Shelvey, Lucas, Suso
  Aston Villa
Lowton, Baker, Lichaj, Clark
Agbonlahor, Bannan, Westwood, Herd

Liverpool top goalscorer Luis Suarez is available after serving a one-match ban and missing last weekend's comeback victory at West Ham.

Jose Enrique (hamstring) was taken off midway through the first half of the 3-2 win, but manager Brendan Rodgers branded it only "a precaution". The left-back is considered a doubt so Stewart Downing's continuing presence in the position is more likely.

Nuri Sahin (face) missed the win on Sunday and is also in line for a return after being withdrawn during the win over Udinese. Elsewhere, Martin Kelly (knee) and Fabio Borini (foot) are long-term absentees.

Paul Lambert has a long injury list, but Joe Bennett (knee), who missed Tuesday's Capital One Cup win over Norwich City could return. Captain Ron Vlaar (calf) and Enda Stevens (ankle) have not featured for three weeks so are unlikely to start.

Darren Bent (hamstring) was forced off in the win at Carrow Road in midweek with Lambert admitting he expects the striker to miss the next four weeks.

Long-term absentees Richard Dunne (groin) and Gary Gardner (knee) remain out for the foreseeable future.

  • Liverpool are undefeated in 20 of their last 22 matches against Aston Villa in all competitions.
  • The Reds' win at West Ham last week sealed back-to-back league victories for the first time since December 2011.
  • Aston Villa have failed to win 15 of their last 16 away matches in the Premier League.
  • Stewart Downing's (pictured right) last Premier League goal was for Aston Villa against Liverpool.
  • No team has scored fewer goals in the opening 15 minutes than Villa this season.
  • All three of top goalscorer Christian Benteke's Premier League goals have come at Villa Park.