Aston Villa v Southampton Preview | Team News, Key Players and Stats

Aston Villa v Southampton Preview | Team News, Key Players and Stats

The Premier League is finally back and on Monday night, we will see high flying Saints travel to the Midlands to face Aston Villa at the famous Villa Park to resume their fantastic run so far in the competition. Aston Villa, on the other hand, have had a typical season so far, flattering to deceive, picking up just 1 point of a possible 21, with a goalless draw against West Ham away from home before the start of the international break. Paul Lambert has been finding it difficult to get the right results after that creditable away win at Anfield. They have lost 6 games on the bounce, conceding 15 and scoring just once, a run of fixtures that saw them face the big boys in Arsenal, Chelsea, Man City and Everton back-to-back plus the two losses against London sides in QPR and Spurs, adding insult to injury.

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Southampton fans couldn’t have asked for a better start in this season with the new signings and the new manager bondage working wonders that has produced so many efficient victories along the way . In the grand scheme of things, they have managed to win 11 of the last 12 games in all competitions. The fact that, at this point in time, they are the only side that could actually unsettle Jose Mourinho and Chelsea, who are top of the league and unbeaten so far, says it all really. They will go into this game hugely confident and rightly so, on the back of 4 successive league wins and clean sheets, a remarkable streak that started with an 8-0 rout at home against Sunderland.

Team News

Aston Villa 

Lambert has got a few injury worries especially at the back with defender Philippe Senderos out for a month with a calf injury he suffered on international duty with Switzerland. His absence adds to the growing defensive problems ahead of this game with Ron Vlaar (calf) also unavailable and Nathan Baker (knee) sidelined for two months.

Jores Okore stands by to make his first appearance of the season with Villa down to their last two fit centre-backs – but the Villains are boosted by the return of right-back Alan Hutton (ankle) who is deemed fit to be available for contention. Fabian Delph (shoulder) remains sidelined until next year along with Libor Kozak (leg) while forward Christian Benteke is suspended.

Southampton

Manager Ronald Koeman is hopeful that midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin will recover in time from a groin strain that could keep him out of the starting 11. Steven Davis is also a major doubt for the clash at Villa Park with a hamstring strain but the boss should be chuffed about the recovery of Dusan Tadic from a minor knock meaning he is available for selection.

James Ward-Prowse has a fractured foot and is still a month away from a return while Jay Rodriguez remains a long-term absentee with a cruciate ligament injury.

Provisional squads

Aston Villa: Guzan, Given, Hutton, Lowton, Okore, Clark, Herd, Cissokho, Westwood, Richardson, Sanchez, N’Zogbia, Cleverley, Grealish, Cole, Bacuna, Weimann, Agbonlahor, Bent.

Southampton: Forster, K Davis, Cropper, Clyne, Fonte, Gardos, Alderweireld, Bertrand, Targett, Schneiderlin, S Davis, Wanyama, Reed, Cork, Tadic, Yoshida, Mane, Long, Mayuka, Pelle, Gallagher.

Possible Lineups 

PROBABLE LINEUPS

PROBABLE LINEUPS

Names in Bold – Available. Rest – Late fitness test required.

Interesting Numbers

  • This Monday night tie against Southampton will be Paul Lambert’s 100th game in charge of Aston Villa.
  • This is Southampton’s best ever start to a top flight season, surpassing last season’s 22 points at this stage.
  • Southampton are the only team in the Premier League who have dropped no points from matches where they have been leading this season, winning all eight.
  • Au Contraire, Aston Villa are one of two teams going into this matchday yet to recover any points after falling behind.

Key Men

Andreas Weimann  – Aston Villa 

Weimann has been one of the few positives for Aston Villa this season, with the forward in good touch, if not spectacular. He’s their leading goal scorer with 3 goals, though that doesn’t come as a surprise in a team that is basically struggling to find the goals with largely misfiring frontmen in Benteke and Agbonlahor. He’s also managed to set up one other goal, creating 8 chances from open play in total. He’s been involved in all the 11 league games so far, which in itself is laudable as the side is often bothered by injury setbacks. With 1.5 shots per goal, his shot accuracy stands at a creditable 55% but with a less than 80% of success in finding a Claret and blue shirt, he’s not doing his team any favors and is something he will have to improve on. With Benteke suspended, Weimann, shouldering the responsibility to get goals, is their go-to man and could well be the key to turn the fortunes of his team.

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Victor Wanyama – Southampton

The 23-year old midfielder from Kenya has had a bright start to his season. The midfielder’s work has gone under the radar and quite understandably so with all the plaudits going the way of the goalscoring boots of Graziano Pelle. Wanyama, nonetheless, is happy to remain unsung, and has been the vital cog in this relentless machine, churning remarkable results week in week out. The midfielder has been bossing games of late with a commendable pass success rate of 88%, having 67% of his shots right on goal, scoring thrice already, creating three other chances. To put things into perspective, that’s the same amount of goals the top scorer of Aston Villa has managed to score. If Wanyama puts in an all-round shift against Villa like he has been doing all season, this could be a walk in the park for Ronald Koeman and Southampton.

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Betting Section

Pelle has already scored 6 goals this season and looks like he could add to his personal tally come Monday against Aston Villa. To create a bet via Tailorbet backing it up, click the link below. Priced at a mouthwatering 3.00!

http://goo.gl/bVJWzg

Prediction

Aston Villa are on a bad run and are usually bad at Villa Park. Southampton, on the flip side look set to topple one of the big sides and finish in the Champions League places. Away win but a hard fought one.

Aston Villa 0-1 Southampton.