There is mixed news on the injury front with Luke Young out for at least the next 3 matches due to a torn hamstring but possible weekend returns for a number of others. Young injured the hamstring in training on Friday ahead of the Chelsea game leading to a surprise call-up for ‘Sunday, Monday, Habib Beye’. The Senegalese international put in a decent performance and may have done enough to retain a starting berth at right back over fit again Carlos Cuellar.
On the positive front there may well be returns to action for the likes of Richard Dunne, Marc Albrighton and Emile Heskey. Irishman Dunne started the weekend’s match with Chelsea but was substituted early on due to an ankle injury. He was replaced by Ciaran Clark who made an impressive display against the league champions and will be hoping to have done enough to keep his place alongside Collins.
Albrighton missed out with sickness meaning new signing Stephen Ireland was given the chance to stamp his authority in the free role, previously occupied by Ashley Young. Many believe the former Man City man had his best game in a claret and blue shirt and Ireland has stated that he hopes to tie down a regular starting position from now on, after a frustrating start to his Villa career. For this reason the bright talent of Marc Albrighton may have to settle for a place on the bench against Sunderland after a solid all-round performance from his team-mates last weekend.
Emile Heskey was cut down in his Villa prime after a rejuvenated spell under new and former manager, Gerard Houllier. Heskey netted two in two in the Frenchman’s opening games and superbly laid on a third for Albrighton to open the scoring against Tottenham. The striker was injured in his efforts and subsequently replaced. After recovering from the knock, the 32-year-old picked up a back problem ahead of the Chelsea game, allowing John Carew to improve on his indifferent early form. With Agbonlahor still out for another two or three games, Heskey will be hoping to regain his place in the starting XI be it at the expense of, or to partner John Carew.
- Preview: Tottenham Hotspur vs Aston Villa – Prediction, Team News, Line-ups
- Huge Test for Emery – Aston Villa Predicted Lineup and Preview vs Tottenham Hotspur
- Aston Villa eye Europa Conference League success after impressive 2022-23 season
- Aston Villa forward Cameron Archer set to join Sheffield United in £18.5m deal
- Aston Villa in July: Four preseason fixtures as Emery aims for another excellent season
- Aston Villa make formal offer to sign Villarreal star Pau Torres
- Preview: Aston Villa vs Brighton & Hove Albion – prediction, team news, line-ups
- Preview: Aston Villa vs Newcastle United – prediction, team news, line-ups
- Aston Villa in April: Next seven Premier League fixtures
- Manchester City vs Aston Villa Preview – Prediction & Potential line-ups