MX23RW : Wednesday, October 16 09:07:45| >> :600:2222849:2222849:
Sep 16, 2019 at 8pm UK at ​Villa Park
Attendance: 42,010
Aston Villa
West HamWest Ham United

Masuaku (67')

Preview: Aston Villa vs. West Ham United - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Monday night's Premier League showdown between Aston Villa and West Ham United, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Aston Villa will be looking to make it back-to-back Premier League home wins on Monday night when they welcome an in-form West Ham United side to Villa Park.

The Villans have picked up just three points from their opening four games back in the top flight, whereas only three teams have amassed more than the Hammers so far this season.

Match preview

Aston Villa manager Dean Smith on August 31, 2019© Reuters

Aston Villa were quick to reject comparisons with Fulham following their big-money spending spree during the summer transfer window, but ultimately it will be their results on the field which determine whether those signings are a success.

So far there have been signs of encouragement, even if the results have not been exactly how they would have hoped.

Three defeats from four games is perhaps what some would have feared given their relatively difficult start, but it leaves their Premier League record stretching back to their previous spell in the top flight at 15 losses in their last 17 outings.

Of course, the current crop of players are vastly different from the set which went down so meekly in 2016, and they began to show that in the 2-0 victory over Everton last time out at Villa Park - their first home top-flight win since February 2016.

The Villans have not won back-to-back home matches in the Premier League since May 2015, and incidentally those two victories also came against Everton and West Ham.

Whether that omen proves prophetic remains to be seen, although to do so they would need to upset the form book following West Ham's best start to a season since 2012-13.

West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini on August 31, 2019© Reuters

Manuel Pellegrini's men have bounced back admirably since the 5-0 hammering they received on the opening day, avoiding defeat in four matches across all competitions since and winning their last three before the international break.

Only Liverpool, Manchester City and Leicester City accrued more points from their opening four games, and away from home it is now five matches unbeaten for the Irons stretching back to April.

The stats are not so encouraging when it comes to Villa Park in particular, where West Ham have won just two of their last 18 league visits, but should they make that three in 19 then it would be the first time they have secured successive victories over Monday's opponents since January 2006.

More importantly it could lift them up to third place - level on points with champions Manchester City - and raise hopes of challenging for a top-six finish this term.

Aston Villa form: LLWWL

West Ham form: LDWWW

Team News

Jonathan Kodjia has a leg-based celebration after scoring for Aston Villa on April 22, 2019© Reuters

Villa will be without Jonathan Kodjia after he sustained a fractured cheekbone in training, forcing him to undergo an operation which will keep him sidelined for up to three weeks.

Dean Smith will also be unable to call upon James Chester and Matt Targett, although both of them are now back in training and should return by the end of the month.

Trezeguet is suspended, meanwhile, following his red card against Crystal Palace last time out.

West Ham have two players on the treatment table, with Winston Reid nearing a return and Michail Antonio a longer-term absentee.

Sebastien Haller will continue to lead the line having scored three goals in as many Premier League games, while he has also now been involved in 21 goals from his last 25 top-flight appearances in Germany and England.

The record signing should have plenty of ammo to work with too - only Kevin De Bruyne created more chances than Manuel Lanzini during the opening four games of the season.

Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Heaton; Guilbert, Engels, Mings, Taylor; McGinn, Luiz, Grealish; Jota, Wesley, El Ghazi

West Ham possible starting lineup:
Fabianski; Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Masuaku; Yarmolenko, Noble, Rice, Lanzini, Anderson; Haller

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We say: Aston Villa 1-2 West Ham

West Ham are coming into this match as the form side, with Pellegrini seemingly now having the team playing in his image. Villa will be looking for the majority of their points to come at home this season, but we're backing West Ham to come out on top in this battle of Claret and Blues.

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Who will win Monday's Premier League clash between Aston Villa and West Ham?

Aston Villa
West Ham
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Jonathan Kodjia has a leg-based celebration after scoring for Aston Villa on April 22, 2019
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