Season’s Greetings and welcome to the Villa Underground’s Boxing Day Team News & Match Preview.
Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace are the visitor’s to Villa Park this afternoon, looking to make amends after a 7-0 drubbing against Liverpool. Villa infamously put seven past the current Premier League champions earlier this season.
Villa come into the game off the back having cruised to victory over West Brom (3-0). It was a dominant display, that gives Dean Smith a selection headache following strong performances from Anwar El Ghazi and Bertrand Traore.
Ross Barkley is reportedly fit after a 5 week absence with a hamstring injury. The 27 year old Chelsea loanee has formed a strong partnership alongside Jack Grealish and is a big plus to have available, if only from the bench.
Palace will welcome back former Villa striker Christian Benteke after suspension, but Gary Cahill misses out through injury.
Trezeguet remains out with a thigh injury for Villa, with Brazilian striker Wesley still recuperating from long-term injury despite a return to training.
With Palace’s form indifferent and Villa seemingly on the up again after a small blip, this is a great opportunity for Smith to lift the side as high as 6th with a win.
- Palace have won just once at Villa Park in 8 attempts.
- Villa have won just 1 of the last 10 Boxing Day games.
- Villa have 7 clean sheets this term – the highest in the PL.
- Palace haven’t managed a clean sheet in 13 matches.
- Esri Konsa is fit again for Villa after a recent absence.
- Villa have 7 points from the last 3 games.
- Palace haven’t scored more than 1 goal at VP in 17 games.
- Hodgson’s side have won just 5 of their last 22 PL fixtures.
- Kick Off : 3pm / 15:00 (GMT)
- UK viewers can watch the game for free on BBC1.
- Stream Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace online on iPlayer.
VILLA TEAM NEWS
Aston Villa side and subs to face Crystal Palace at Villa Park:
Hause, Mings, Targett, Cash.
Luiz, McGinn, Grealish (C), Traore, El Ghazi.
On The Bench:
Heaton, Elmohamady, Guilbert, Konsa, Taylor, Nakamba, Ramsay, Hourihane, Davis.
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