With Shay Given out for a month, Brad Guzan gets his first Premier League start, and it’s also emerged this week that the American is in contract discussions with his current deal set to expire at the end of the season. Jermaine Jenas is out for the season, and with the club apparently on the hook for his wages the less said about that the better.
It looks like it’s a straightforward 4-4-2 from McLeish this week, and with Herd providing
One of the bigger talking points has been the return of Ashley Young. James Milner showed class by not celebrating at Eastlands recently, expect Ashley Young to do exactly the same today, but preferably because he hasn’t scored.
Either way, it’s a tough game ahead and I suspect there will be a bigger interest in the manner McLeish approaches the game than any real expectation in getting much from it.
The two managers go way back of course, here’s how they are
This game will go ahead despite the tragic news that Wales manager, Gary Speed, has apparently taken his own life. Naturally, with the game being in Wales and a number of internationals involved, the game will inevitably be effected in some way. Such sad news.
Alex McLeish has promised a better performance than we were treated to at White Hart Lane and, in all honesty, it would be difficult to be much worse. It will certainly be a contrast in styles
Remember the Premier League? Yeah, we’re finally back in action tonight for our first league game under the floodlights of 2011/12. Returning to White Hart Lane also happens to be significant for Alex McLeish, but that’s not something we wish to dwell on.
Truth is, coming back from North London with a point has generally been a decent result for us in the past, you’ll do well to find many Villa fans optimistic about grabbing something tonight. Football’s not always predictable
You have to go all the way back to 2004/05 to find the last time this fixture was played; a 3-0 win under David O’Leary. Alex McLeish could really do with something similar today.
Darren Bent has said that one goal could open the floodgates, and McLeish has “rubbished” silly rumours of a January sale. Jermaine Jenas is finally fit, Nathan Delfouneso makes space on the bench for him, and though Barry Bannan was welcomed back into the fold after his
Darren Bent’s first return to Wearside since his switch to Aston Villa has dominated the headlines, but Steve Bruce will be more concerned with trying to find what would only be his third home win of 2011.
Alex McLeish is coming off the back of two losses; one far from unexpected, the other extremely disappointing. He’s a man that can’t really afford a third straight loss.
After his wrongful dismissal was rightfully rescinded, Chris Herd keeps his place in the starting line-up.
West Brom come to Villa Park in a fixture we haven’t lost since 1979. Our record from the last 10 times we played the Baggies in the league is six wins and four draws.
Roy Hodgson’s side picked up their second win of the season last weekend, a 2-0 home victory against the hapless Wolves. We’re trying to put a comprehensive loss at the hands of Man City behind us, Alex McLeish threatening to drop any players who put in lacklustre
We’re back in action for what is the first really big test for Alex McLeish since he came to Villa, possibly one of the toughest of the season, but also as good a time as any to play Man City at their own place.
Over the last 10 times this league fixture has been played, we’ve won just two and lost eight times. No wonder the Castrol Football Prediction doesn’t think much of our chances.
Here’s how McLeish is looking to grab
It’s just under five months since Wigan were last at Villa Park and they’ve proven to be something of a bogey team for us in our limited history of playing them. This will only be the 7th time this league fixture has been played, but we’re yet to win one. The pattern so far is LDLDLD; clearly we need to break that pattern one way or another today.
Here’s how Alex McLeish intends to grab the vital win: