After their surprise loss to newcomers Watford in the opening weekend of the Premier League season, Aston Villa will host Newcastle United on Saturday. The Villans lost 3-2 to the Hornets, although they did put up a fight in the second half, scoring twice to run Watford close.
Things could be a little different this weekend though as Villa face a poor Newcastle United side, whom they have beaten twice in their last two fixtures at Villa Park.
Let’s take a look at the possible Aston Villa lineup for the game against Newcastle United.
Early Team News
Midfielder Douglas Luiz, who won the gold with Brazil at the Olympics, has returned to training. But, he may not be fit enough to go straight into the first team, and will have to settle for a place on the bench.
Striker Ollie Watkins suffered an injury in pre-season which ruled him out of the opening game of the season. If fit, he could make the bench for the game on Saturday.
Winger Trezeguet and midfielder Morgan Sanson, though, will not be fit for the match against Newcastle United.
Predicted Aston Villa lineup vs Newcastle United (4-2-3-1)
Emiliano Martinez had a busy day between the sticks against Watford, making 4 saves in the game. He will play in goal for the Villans against Newcastle United.
Manager Dean Smith could opt for a similar backline to the one he played against Watford, barring one change. Tyrone Mings and Ezri Konsa had an off day against Watford, but they will be trusted to bounce back at the heart of defence in the Aston Villa lineup.
Axel Tuanzebe is an option for Smith if he wants to change things around.
Matty Cash should start at right-back, but Smith could perhaps make a change at left-back by replacing Matt Targett with the experienced Ashley Young. Targett had a tough game against Watford as he was bullied by Hornets winger Ismaila Sarr. He was brought off at half-time with Young going into the left-back position.
Douglas Luiz may not have enough match fitness to start against Newcastle United so Dean Smith will likely continue with the midfield duo of John McGinn and Marvelous Nakamba.
New signing Emiliano Buendia didn’t make that big an impression in the No. 10 role, but he will likely start in that position again in the Aston Villa lineup.
Leon Bailey showed sparks of brilliance after coming on in the second half and he could start on the left side of attack. Anwar El Ghazi could lose his place on the right side of attack, replaced by Bertrand Traore, who was also a second-half substitute against Watford.
Danny Ings will continue as the main striker for Aston Villa.