Aston Villa host Manchester United on Saturday evening, having just lost to the Red Devils in the third round of the FA Cup.
Steven Gerrard’s men played well at Old Trafford and didn’t deserve to come away from the tie with a third consecutive defeat in all competitions. Losses to Chelsea and Brentford before their previous outing have tarnished what has been a hugely encouraging start to Gerrard’s tenure at Villa Park.
This weekend, they come up against a United side trying to overcome some miserable performances to come back fighting in the race for European qualification. Here’s how Villa could line up for this Premier League clash.
Emi Martinez (GK) – No clean sheet for a month, but there’s no doubting his shot-stopping capabilities.
Matty Cash (RB) – His dynamism and thrust down the right wing is a joy to behold and, having started all of his side’s Premier League outings thus far this campaign, he should be set for another.
Ezri Konsa (CB) – Villa’s centre-back pairing looks pretty set in stone these days, meaning Konsa will likely start his 19th league game this term.
Tyrone Mings (CB) – And once again captaining the side should be England international Mings, who returned from a one-match absence last time out.
Lucas Digne (LB) – The Frenchman’s signing was confirmed on Thursday so he could be set for a very exciting debut on Saturday.
Jacob Ramsey (CM) – Is evidently impressing Gerrard, having missed just one league outing since the new boss’ arrival.
Douglas Luiz (CM) – Once again demonstrating his undoubted quality at the heart of the side, Luiz is a shoo-in to start for Villa.
Morgan Sanson (CM) – John McGinn will miss out through suspension, likely opening the door to Frenchman Sanson.
Emi Buendia (RW) – While Leon Bailey continues his recovery from a hamstring issue, Buendia’s role on the right of the front three seems pretty secure.
Ollie Watkins (ST) – Gave United all sorts of issues last time out and will surely be an absolute nuisance once more as the Red Devils visit town.
Philippe Coutinho (LW) – The one everyone wants to see. Danny Ings was brilliant at Old Trafford on Monday but, come on, it would be so rude not to.