Both sides were promoted together in 2018-19 but endured contrasting campaigns last season, with Villa only narrowly avoiding relegation and Sheffield United surpassing all expectations.
Aston Villa have been forced to wait longer than most to get their Premier League season underway, but they appear to have used their extra time off very productively.
Ollie Watkins, Emiliano Martinez and Bertrand Traore have all arrived at the club in the past two weeks to take their overall summer spending to more than £74m, including the club-record £27.7m deal for Watkins.
Perhaps the best piece of business they have done is tying talismanic captain Jack Grealish down to a new five-year contract, though, finally ending speculation over his future once and for all.
Dean Smith's options suddenly look a lot stronger than they did for much of last season, then, although big spending is by no means a guarantee for success - as they discovered themselves last term when only a great escape saved them at the end of a campaign in which they had splashed over £143m.
Villa fans have had the chance to see Watkins in action already, with the record signing wasting no time in getting off the mark with a goal in Villa's midweek EFL Cup win over Burton Albion.
Indeed, it has been a positive summer on the pitch as well as off it for the Villans, who beat Wycombe Wanderers and Manchester United in pre-season to raise hopes of faring better than a relegation scrap this time around.
The number one priority will still be survival first and foremost, though, and the same will be true for Sheffield United despite such a good 2019-20 campaign.
The Blades were in Champions League contention for much of the season before a post-lockdown slump saw them end up ninth, which was still their joint-best league finish since 1974-75.
Chris Wilder will be well aware of the dreaded 'second-season syndrome', though, and they got off to the worst possible start on the opening weekend when they fell 2-0 down within six minutes at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
There was no further damage done after that, but nor could Sheffield United claw their way back into the match and they now face the prospect of beginning a top-flight campaign with back-to-back defeats for the first time since 1973-74.
The Blades have already been beaten in successive matches across all competitions, having crashed out of the EFL Cup in the second round with a penalty shootout defeat at Burnley on Thursday night.
That result extended United's winless away run to seven games, while in the Premier League alone they have not won on the road since February 1 - a streak which began with a goalless draw at Villa Park which was most memorable for a goalline technology failure when Villa keeper Orland Nyland appeared to carry the ball over his own line.
Aston Villa form (all competitions): W
Sheffield United Premier League form: L
Sheffield United form (all competitions): LL
© Aston Villa FC
Record signing Watkins is set to make his Premier League debut for Villa after getting off the mark in midweek.
The former Brentford man could be joined in the XI by a couple of other fellow new arrivals too, with Matty Cash, who was also linked to Sheffield United this summer, and Martinez both in line for their debuts.
A host of other first-team players are expected to return to the fold after sitting out in midweek.
Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Mings, Targett; McGinn, Luiz, Hourihane; Trezeguet, Watkins, Grealish
Sheffield United possible starting lineup:
Ramsdale; Basham, Egan, O'Connell; Baldock, Berge, Norwood, Lundstram, Stevens; McBurnie, McGoldrick
We say: Aston Villa 1-1 Sheffield United
Aston Villa will be full of optimism heading into this match after their recent transfer business, and they will fancy their chances of kicking things off with a positive result against Sheffield United.
The Blades are difficult to beat, though, and despite having not won any of their last 13 league visits to Villa Park, we can see them coming away with a point this time.