Aston Villa will face Manchester United at Villa Park on Sunday afternoon with hopes of securing their second win in six matches.
Aston Villa’s FA Cup journey came to an end with a 3-1 loss to Chelsea in the fourth-round replay, while Manchester United comfortably defeated West Ham United 3-0 in their last Premier League game.
Aston Villa’s winning streak of 15 matches in front of their home supporters has come to a halt with back-to-back 3-1 defeats.
They were dominated by Chelsea in the FA Cup rematch, and their previous Premier League fixture saw them win 5-0 against Sheffield United.
Aston Villa currently sits fourth in the table and their qualification for the 2024-25 Champions League is still within their reach.
However, if Tottenham Hotspur beats Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday, Aston Villa will drop to fifth place. Additionally, they will be eight points behind Manchester City if the champions defeat Everton on February 10.
Despite recent shortcomings, Aston Villa has shown a great scoring record at Villa Park, scoring in 32 consecutive games in all competitions.
On the other hand, Manchester United, under the guidance of Erik ten Hag, has been performing well and has promising young players who are making their mark.
In their last game against West Ham United, Manchester United emerged victorious with a 3-0 scoreline. This win propelled them to sixth place in the Premier League table, surpassing David Moyes’s team.
However, they still have a significant gap of eight points to close if they want to catch up with Aston Villa in fourth place.
Manchester United’s attacking record remains the worst in the English top flight, with only 31 goals scored so far.
Nevertheless, they have shown improvements in their attacking play, scoring 11 goals in their last three games and 19 goals in their last seven.
In their previous encounter with Aston Villa on Boxing Day, Manchester United secured a thrilling 3-2 comeback victory. Rasmus Hojlund scored his first Premier League goal, adding to the excitement of the match.
Aston Villa Premier League form: DLWDLW
Aston Villa form (all competitions): WDDLWL
Manchester United Premier League form: LWLDWW
Manchester United form (all competitions): LWDWWW
Aston Villa will have Morgan Rogers back in the squad after he was ineligible for the FA Cup loss to Chelsea.
Nicolo Zaniolo and Pau Torres have also been given the green light to play after recovering from injuries.
However, Ezri Konsa will be out of action for three to four weeks due to a knee problem. Tyrone Mings and Emiliano Buendia are also sidelined with similar issues. Jhon Duran is on the road to recovery from a serious hamstring concern.
Lucas Digne has a chance of making his comeback for Aston Villa this weekend. After a disappointing performance in the FA Cup, Erik ten Hag should consider promoting Moussa Diaby, Pau Torres, and Jacob Ramsey to the starting lineup.
Manchester United, on the other hand, will be without Lisandro Martinez for at least eight weeks due to a knee injury.
Anthony Martial, Tyrell Malacia, and Mason Mount are still sidelined with respective injuries. Aaron Wan-Bissaka will also miss the match after sustaining an unspecified problem during a training session.
Raphael Varane is expected to replace Martinez in the defense.
Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Cash, Torres, Lenglet, Moreno;
Diaby, Tielemans, McGinn;
Manchester United possible starting lineup:
Dalot, Maguire, Varane, Shaw;
Garnacho, Fernandes, Rashford;
Prediction: Aston Villa 2-3 Manchester United
We predict a thrilling encounter between Aston Villa and Manchester United, with a scoreline of 2-3 in favor of Manchester United.
Aston Villa has been consistent in scoring at home, while Manchester United has shown a renewed attacking prowess in recent games.