Aston Villa will make the long trip down South today to take on Southampton at the St Marys Stadium in the Premier League.
If you had offered most serious fans at the start of the season would they take our position right now they would have jumped on any promo codes available and jumped at the opportunity. Villa are currently one place and one point outside the relegation zone with 12 games left to play. Of course, there will be plenty of ups and downs before the end of the season but it is still in our hands.
Maybe the problem this season has been when things have been in our hands. Villa have probably been their own downfall this season. In the fixtures that fans would like to see us have a go, we haven’t turned up. In those games we see as a free hit, like Tottenham the last time out, we seem to perform only to ultimately cost ourselves.
But this isn’t a time for negativity. Both fans and players alike need to remain positive going into the final third of the season. Look at the positives. We know how to score goals. We are more than capable of having a go against most in this division. Dean Smith’s men need to take this ethic into the game against Southampton and hopefully, we can see a repeat of the brilliant result we managed at Burnley on New Years Day.
Tyrone Mings is expected to return after missing the defeat against Tottenham with tonsilitis. Smith will have to make a decision on who he replaces with Bjorn Engels the most likely casualty following his mistake against Spurs. Although I am sure most fans would opt for Kortney Hause dropping to the bench.
Keinan Davis will miss out with a thigh injury but he could be available for selection in the League Cup Final at Wembley. John McGinn is finally back in training and could be available in 2-3 weeks.
Southampton will be without Nathan Redmond who has a hip injury. Southampton are unsure on the full extent of his injury but he is expected to be missing for 1-2 months. Sofiane Boufel and Kyle Walker-Peters (both calf) are also expected to miss out.
Check out the Premier League Injury Table here.
HEAD TO HEAD
“Their head coach has said that it’s tough to play at home because there is pressure on them.
“We have to concentrate on ourselves and put that pressure onto Southampton and their supporters.
“If we play to the capabilities that have got, we are a match for anyone.
“The quality of his [Danny Ings] finishing has been outstanding.“If our defenders play well, we keep him quiet, they are all capable but they have to concentrate and focus for 90 minutes.”