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Frenchman insists Villans have something to prove against Blues

Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier has conceded that his side are not favourites going into the encounter with Chelsea at Villa Park this evening, but insists they will have attacking options of their own.

Whilst the former Liverpool boss fully acknowledges the fearsome firepower of Chelsea’s attack, he expects his players to give the Blues a run for their money.

"We are not the favourites, let's put it this way, but you can expect we will give them a game,” Houllier told the club’s official website.

"They are very impressive. It is a strong, powerful side that plays football but we have got our own assets as well.

"We will try to play them. They had an impressive start with impressive wins as well so we need to be aware of that but at the same time they lost once."

The Villa gaffer was also concerned about the loss of key players to the international break, claiming that it had affected his preparations for the game.

"We lost practically half the team but with the rest we have worked very hard to prepare for the coming game.

"It's a price you pay when you have top players and I prefer to have top players who go on international [duty rather] than players that don't get selected, because it means that the level of the squad is good.

"It is disruptive in a way but not to the point you cannot work. The fact that they come back now on Wednesday and Thursday gives you one day more.

Chelsea have won six of their last seven games, scoring 23 goals and conceding only two.

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