MX23RW : Tuesday, February 18 01:08:35| >> :600:2253323:2253323:
Jan 21, 2020 at 7.30pm UK at ​Villa Park
Attendance: 40,867
Aston Villa
Luiz (68'), Mings (95')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Deeney (38')

Preview: Aston Villa vs. Watford - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Tuesday's Premier League showdown between Aston Villa and Watford.

Aston Villa and Watford square off in the West Midlands on Tuesday night with just one point separating the clubs in the Premier League table.

The Hornets, on the back of a six-match unbeaten streak, will remain outside of the relegation zone if they avoid defeat.

Match preview

Watford manager Nigel Pearson pictured on January 12, 2020© Reuters

Such has been Watford's recent progression that there would have been disappointment after only recording a goalless draw against Tottenham Hotspur at the weekend.

However, given that it was a contest which either side could have won, Nigel Pearson would have felt a sense of relief that his players were able to extend their excellent run of form.

While an FA Cup replay with Tranmere Rovers on Thursday night complicates matters, Pearson will demand that his players are fully focused on gaining what could eventually turn out to be a pivotal result come the end of the season.

The reverse fixture will also be fresh in the mind of both clubs, with Watford registering a 3-0 triumph with relative ease at Vicarage Road on December 28.

On that occasion, Troy Deeney played an instrumental part, scoring a double and bullying the Villa backline, and the Birmingham-born frontman will be motivated to heap more misery on the rivals of his boyhood club.

From Villa's perspective, they made the headlines for the wrong reasons when they suffered a one-sided 6-1 defeat at the hands of Manchester City last week, who arguably should have won by an even wider margin.

However, at a time when his team are still short of firepower, Dean Smith would have been hugely impressed with his team's spirit in claiming a share of the spoils at Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday.

Despite the result not being enough to keep Villa out of the relegation zone, they at least ensured that they only remain three points adrift of 14th position, highlighting the competitiveness of the lower regions of the standings.

Jack Grealish took his tally to seven goals and five assists for the season at the Amex Stadium, and Smith may feel that the playmaker needs to produce another inspirational performance on Tuesday night in order to earn a result.

Aston Villa Premier League form: LWLWLD
Aston Villa form (all competitions): LWLDLD

Watford Premier League form: WDWWWD
Watford form (all competitions): DWWDWD

Team News

Aston Villa manager Dean Smith on December 14, 2019© Reuters

Despite the short recovery period, Smith is unlikely to make many changes to Villa's starting lineup.

The most likely switch is in midfield, where Danny Drinkwater could be replaced by either Douglas Luiz or Conor Hourihane.

Providing that no striker is signed before Monday's deadline, Trezeguet, Anwar El Ghazi and Grealish should form a front three.

Having suffered a hamstring injury against Spurs, Ismaila Sarr will miss out for Watford, which should lead to a start for Roberto Pereyra.

However, the rest of the team could stay the same, with Christian Kabasele having to make do with a spot among the replacements.

Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Reina; Konsa, Mings, Hause; Guilbert, Luiz, Nakamba, Targett; Trezeguet, El Ghazi, Grealish

Watford possible starting lineup:
Foster; Mariappa, Dawson, Cathcart, Masina; Chalobah, Capoue; Pereyra, Doucoure, Deulofeu; Deeney

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We say: Aston Villa 1-3 Watford

While Villa are capable of raising their game in front of their own supporters, we cannot back against Watford, who are currently showing everything required to get themselves out of a relegation scrap. As well as their confidence in attack, the Hornets also have the potential to overpower their hosts.

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Who will win Tuesday's Premier League clash between Aston Villa and Watford?

Aston Villa
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Aston Villa manager Dean Smith on December 28, 2019
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rhs 2.0
2Manchester CityMan City25163665293651
3Leicester CityLeicester26155654262850
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs2611784334940
6Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd2610972824439
7Manchester UnitedMan Utd2610883829938
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2681263532336
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2687112440-1631
14Crystal Palace2679102332-930
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2669113138-727
17Aston Villa2674153450-1625
18West Ham UnitedWest Ham2566133043-1324
20Norwich CityNorwich2646162448-2418

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