Aston Villa and Wolves meet in a Premier League Midlands derby which could have big consequences at both ends of the table.
Villa Park, Aston, England
Key Stat: Villa have now gone eight games without a win, despite their two points since the restart.
Expert Verdict: Raul Jimenez's goals have helped keep Wolves on track for European qualification with two wins since the restart. After victories against West Ham and Bournemouth, they face another team down the wrong end of the table in Aston Villa and they are favourites to beat out-of-form Villa too.
Frederic Guilbert and Danny Drinkwater could be back in contention this weekend, but Tom Heaton and Wesley remain as long-term absentees. Ahmed El Mohamady could start this time out.
Jack Grealish – Villa’s star man this season, the playmaker is closing in on ten goals and ten assists so far this season.
Mbwana Samatta – Scored in the Carabao Cup final and leads the Villa line with Wesley absent, where he will look for more goals.
Ahmed El Mohamady – Scored when Villa last beat Wolves and netted the late equaliser away to Newcastle last time out.
Villa are without a win in their last eight games but they have picked up two points since getting back to action. Villa and Sheffield United endured a goalless draw, before Kortney Hause’s opener could not help avoid a 2-1 defeat to Villa. Last time out, Ahmed El Mohamady equalised to earn a 1-1 draw at Newcastle.
Defenders:Ahmed El Mohamady, Kortney Hause, Tyrone Mings, Matt Targett
Defensive Midfielders:Douglas Luiz
Attacking Midfielders:Anwar El Ghazi, Conor Hourihane, John McGinn, Jack Grealish
After their impact coming off the bench last time out, Adama Traore and Pedro Neto could start this time out and Wolves may adopt a slightly more attacking system.
Raul Jimenez – Goals in both games since Wolves have returned to action has earned two wins and taken him to 15 for the season.
Adama Traore – Set up both of Jimenez’s goals since the restart to confirm his importance to this team in attack.
Ruben Neves – The Portuguese playmaker runs the show in midfield, with a stunning range of passing from the middle of the park.
Wolves are unbeaten in their last five matches, including winning both games since restart. Raul Jimenez scored in the wins against West Ham and Bournemouth, with Pedro Neto also netting against the former.
Defenders:Willy Boly, Conor Coady, Romain Saiss
Midfielders:Matt Doherty, Ruben Neves, Joao Moutinho, Jonny Castro
Forwards:Adama Traore, Raul Jimenez, Pedro Neto
Villa thrashed Wolves at Villa Park before the latter got promoted, and the last time they met at Villa Park – in this year’s Carabao Cup – also ended in a home win. Anwar El Ghazi and Ahmed Elmohamady scored Villa’s goals, either side of a Patrick Cutrone equaliser. Wolves won their previous league meeting this season, however – Ruben Neves and Raul Jimenez scoring before Trezeguet pulled one back late on. Here are the results of their last five meetings:
Nov 10, 2019: Wolves 2-1 Aston Villa
Oct 30, 2019: Aston Villa 2-1 Wolves
Mar 10, 2018: Aston Villa 4-1 Wolves
Oct 14, 2017: Wolves 2-0 Aston Villa
Jan 14, 2017: Wolves 1-0 Aston Villa
Aston Villa are now eight games without a win, while Wolves have won their last two and are unbeaten in five in total.
Wolves are favourites to win as a result, and after beating two relegation-threatened teams in the last week – both times without conceding – they can continue that impressive form.
Aston Villa lack goalscorers in this team and their two points since returning have not come from particularly impressive performances.
At the other end, Raul Jimenez will be key – he has moved to 15 goals so far this season and scored in both matches since restart.
Adama Traore’s pace and creativity has made a big difference too – with the pace of matches slow at the moment, he has injected something into both games.
Wolves beat Villa at Molineux earlier this season, with Jimenez and Ruben Neves on target, and it would be a big surprise if they did not win this one either.
Wolves are favourites to beat Aston Villa and can be backed at 31/40 to win with Betway.
Bet365 are offering a best price of 15/8 on Wolves to win to nil. You can also bet against both teams to score at 4/5 with Bet365.
After one and two goals in their two games so far, under 2.5 goals will return a best price of 4/6 with Bet365, Betfair and Betway.Goalscorer in their two games so far, Raul Jimenez is a best price of 13/10 with Betfair and Paddy Power to score at any time.
Wolverhampton Wanderers have won both games since the restart, both without conceding, and they can continue that run.