After a two-week hiatus, Aston Villa are back in Premier League action against Leeds United at Villa Park on Wednesday evening.
The Villans bounced back after a three-game winless run in the league with a 1-0 away win against Everton, thanks to a first-half stoppage-time strike from Emi Buendia.
Having been eliminated from all domestic cup competitions, Steven Gerrard only has the Premier League to concentrate on as he eyes back-to-back league wins in midweek when Leeds United visit Villa Park.
Aston Villa Team News
Marvelous Nakamba is out until April with a knee injury and although Leon Bailey has stepped up his recovery from a thigh problem, he will be available for selection against Leeds United.
Mahmoud Trezeguet and Bertrand Traore could be afforded time off following their long participation at the AFCON with Egypt and Burkina Faso, respectively. If not, they might be in the squad to face the Whites.
Predicted Aston Villa Lineup vs Leeds United (4-3-2-1)
Emiliano Martinez is Aston Villa’s undisputed No.1 and must retain his place in goal on Wednesday. The lanky Argentinean would need to be at his best to keep a clean sheet against Leeds.
Tyrone Mings will operate alongside Ezri Konsa at the heart of Aston Villa’s backline as they hope to keep a solid shape during the entire game. Matty Cash and Lucas Digne will function as full-backs in the Aston Villa lineup, providing width, energy and attacking impetus from either side of the defence.
The back four of Cash, Konsa, Mings and Digne will face a stiff challenge from a pressing Leeds side, so they cannot afford space to Bielsa’s side to exploit or afford to make mistakes in and around the box.
Douglas Luiz, John McGinn and Jacob Ramsay are likely to be the midfield trio to feature in the Aston Villa lineup. Luiz will look to control things from a deeper role, offering Ramsay and McGinn the license to go forward and create opportunities in the final third.
All three of them will need to be at the top of their games if the Villans are to secure a crucial victory against Marcelo Bielsa’s side.
In a narrow attack, Ollie Watkins is expected to spearhead the Aston Villa lineup. The England international needs a goal or two to boost his confidence ahead of what is a busy month of football.
Philippe Coutinho has made an immediate impact after signing on loan from Barcelona last month and looks set to start on the left flank, whereas Emi Buendia hopes to make a difference from the right.