As Jurgen Klopp affirmed at full time, football came second during Liverpool's showdown with Nottingham Forest last weekend, as the game kicked off only a few hours after news broke of Reds attacker Luis Diaz's parents being kidnapped in Colombia.
Diogo Jota and the whole of Anfield expressed their support for Diaz when the former opened the scoring and held up his teammate's jersey, which came four minutes before a Darwin Nunez tap-in, and a rush of blood to the head from Matt Turner allowed Mohamed Salah to tap home into an empty net in the dying embers.
With no EFL Cup commitments to attend to in midweek, Steve Cooper and his off-colour Forest squad have had ample time to come up with a solution to their winless woes, having played out four draws and two defeats since coming away from Chelsea with a surprise 1-0 win at the start of September.
Thanks to their double-figure points total, the 16th-placed Tricky Trees boast an unassailable lead over their fellow relegation candidates for the time being, and home is certainly where the heart is for Cooper's troops if recent results are anything to go by.
Indeed, Forest have strung together an eye-catching seven-game Premier League unbeaten run at the City Ground - albeit while drawing each of their last three versus Burnley, Brentford and Luton Town - and only Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur have prevented the hosts from scoring in a top-flight home game since their promotion.
Proving too hot to handle at Villa Park yet again, Aston Villa made it 12 Premier League home wins on the bounce when Luton Town paid a visit to their newly-fortified headquarters last weekend, their best such run since the competition's inception in 1992.
John McGinn set the wheels in motion before Moussa Diaby doubled the Lions' lead early in the second half, and following a pair of own goals from Tom Lockyer and Emiliano Martinez, Villa had yet another multiple-goal success to their name under Emery.
With a praiseworthy 22 points from their opening 10 fixtures, Villa - who sit fifth in the rankings at the time of writing - have made their best start to a campaign since the 1998-99 term, and it has been 70 years since the Lions last had seven wins to show from their first 10 games of a top-tier season.
A pair of 4-1 thrashings of AZ Alkmaar and West Ham United preceded their success over Luton, meaning that Villa head to Nottingham with 11 goals under their belt from their last three fixtures, but replicating their home form on rival territory is proving a challenge.
Only two of Villa's last nine Premier League fixtures on the road have seen Emery's men come up trumps, and they were held to a 1-1 draw by Forest at the City Ground last season, but not since 1994 have the Tricky Trees got one over their Europa Conference League-contending foes in the top flight.
Forest came away from their loss to Liverpool with a couple of players walking a tightrope, as Orel Mangala and Ibrahim Sangare were both cautioned for the fourth time this season and will incur one-match bans if they enter the referee's book this weekend.
The midfield duo will be fine to take on the Lions, but the same cannot be said for Callum Hudson-Odoi (thigh), Felipe (knee), Divock Origi (hip), Chris Wood (thigh) or Gonzalo Montiel (calf), while Danilo (thigh) is slowly working his way back to full fitness and may not be risked either.
However, Taiwo Awoniyi was fit enough to come off the bench against his old club last weekend and could be thrust back into the XI as Cooper's central striker, a role which Anthony Elanga occupied at Anfield.
As far as Aston Villa are concerned, Emery ought to be working with an identical group of players from last week's win, where Nicolo Zaniolo was once again available to feature despite the looming investigation over alleged illegal gambling.
Zaniolo only completed the first 45 minutes of the victory over Luton before being withdrawn for Leon Bailey, who has certainly made a case to demote the Italian to the bench this weekend, but Emery should otherwise see no need to alter a winning shape.
Long-term knee victims Tyrone Mings and Emiliano Buendia are still unavailable, as are Jhon Duran (toe) and Jacob Ramsey (ankle), but Alex Moreno is in with a slim chance of coming back from a thigh problem.
Nottingham Forest possible starting lineup:
Turner; Aurier, Murillo, Niakhate, Aina; Sangare, Mangala, Dominguez; Gibbs-White, Awoniyi, Elanga
Aston Villa possible starting lineup:
Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Torres, Digne; McGinn, Kamara, Luiz, Bailey; Diaby, Watkins
We say: Nottingham Forest 1-2 Aston Villa
Very few teams have been able to quell Forest's attacking threat at the City Ground, where a fit-again Awoniyi should help extinguish Villa's chances of a clean sheet, but keeping Emery's men at bay down the other end is another matter entirely.
Forest's eye-catching home exploits and Villa's indifferent record on the road should lead to a tighter affair than the form book would suggest, but the Lions' red-hot attackers can be relied upon to propel the visitors to an eighth maximum of the new term.
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