Aston Villa will head to the capital to take on West Ham United at the London Stadium in the final Premier League game of the weekend. Villa kick-off in the 8 pm Monday night slot and will want to return to winning ways following the controversial defeat to Brighton last weekend.
Unlike last season, Villa’s form on the road is much better than their form at Villa Park. They have won all three of their opening games away games in the Premier League and remain the only team not to concede a goal on their travels.
West Ham were tipped to be one of the sides who would be fighting relegation before the start of the season following what looked like a hostile summer for the Hammers. David Moye’s has guided them to 9th, just one point below Villa on 14 points.
They have caused a couple of surprise results also when they pumped Wolves 4-0 in September and also managed to hold Manchester City to a 1-1 draw in October.
This will certainly be an interesting encounter for both sides that both would be looking to win.
Aston Villa were handed a huge blow when it was revealed that the hamstring injury Ross Barkley picked up in the defeat against Brighton would rule him out for “2 to 3 weeks”. Although it is not as bad as Dean Smith first feared he did say: “Ross obviously got a hamstring injury against Brighton so he’s going to be out for 2-3 weeks. Nothing more than that, it’s not as bad as what we first feared. He should be back in 2-3 weeks, he’s done a week already, obviously.”
Kortney Hause and Freddy Guilbert have returned to training but it is thought that the West Ham game will come to early for the pair. Keinan Davis is back in training today (Sunday) and will be assessed ahead of the game.
West Ham revealed in the week that top goalscorer Michail Antonio is back in training. Moyes said: “He’s joined in training a couple of days. We’re trying to see how he is. It’s great to get him back out on the training pitch with us. We want competition for places and I think we’ve got that now. Hopefully, when he gets that opportunity we’ll be ready.”
Andriy Yarmolenko is rulled out with Covid-19.
Video via avfc.co.uk.
Referee: Peter Bankes.
Assistants: Neil Davies, James Mainwaring. Fourth official: Anthony Taylor. VAR: Stuart Attwell. Assistant VAR: Stephen Child.
DID YOU KNOW
Aston Villa have won all three of their opening away fixtures on the road. They have never won their first four on the road in a league campaign.
Villa have won three of their last four Premier League games played on a Monday.
West Ham have lost just one of their last eight meetings with Aston Villa although both meetings last season ended in draws.
I feared last week that we would be leggy in midfield because of Smith’s reluctance to utilise his squad. He will be forced into one change with Barkley being ruled out so it will be interesting to see what route he takes. I do expect a much better performance from Villa this time around but it won’t be easy. West Ham are hard to beat and this game could be won in the middle of the park.
West Ham 0-0 Aston Villa