Crucial fortnight ahead for Aston Villa’s promotion hopes

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Bruce is under pressure.

Aston Villa faces a crucial two-week period from the middle of November that could make-or-break their hopes of automatic promotion from the Championship.

A run of just one defeat in 12 games sparked promotion talk around Villa Park, but they were brought back down to earth by Sheffield Wednesday in their last fixture before the international break.

Wednesday recorded a 2-1 victory to leave Villa sixth in the table, nine points behind leaders Wolverhampton Wanders.

Villa returns to action on November 18 with a trip to QPR, before welcoming Sunderland and Ipswich Town to Villa Park during the following week.

With a visit to Leeds United rounding off that run of games on December 1, Steve Bruce’s side will surely need at least a ten point return if they’re to be classed as serious promotion candidates.

Bookmakers fancy Villa to kick-off their crucial run of fixtures with a victory at QPR. They are priced at 6/4 to win that game but visit this free spins casino to boost your bankroll before wagering on the match.

Villa promotion hopes will rely on their home form.Villa’s recent record against QPR is good, with the Midlands side losing just one of their last eight meetings.

Last season’s fixtures both finished 1-0 to Villa and they can be backed at 7/1 to match that feat on their next trip to Loftus Road.

Sunderland’s visit to Villa Park on November 21 should also hold no fears for the home side, with the Wearsiders’ victory at the Stadium of Light back in January their first in ten meetings between the two teams.

It’s been a miserable season so far for Sunderland, with just one win in 16 games seeing them rooted to the bottom of the Championship.

Former Villa full-back Simon Grayson lasted just four months as Sunderland manager and the club appears to be on a massive downward spiral.

Six points from those two games would set Villa up nicely for the visit of Ipswich on November 25. Mick McCarthy’s side is currently two points behind Villa with a game in hand, but their fans have been hugely critical of the team’s style of play.

Ipswich won 1-0 at Villa Park last season, but this is another winnable fixture for Bruce’s team.

Villa head to Leeds on December 1 for what is likely to be the toughest game of the fortnight. Thomas Christiansen’s team started the season well, but have gone off the boil in recent weeks to drop to 10th in the table.

However, they beat Villa 2-0 when the teams met at Elland Road last December and will be eager to get their own promotion bid back on track over the coming weeks.

Villa is currently 16/1 to win the Championship this season, but those odds could be slashed if they can safely navigate the next batch of fixtures.

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