Hull v Villa stats: Delph a key figure for Tigers encounter
Aston Villa have the chance to win three successive league matches this weekend, having not done so since the closing weeks of the 2009-10 season. That trio of wins just so happened to include a 1-0 away victory at Hull - the last time the Tigers were in the top-flight - so the visitors will hope for a repeat performance come Saturday.
The Villans make the trip north in high spirits after their 3-2 victory over Manchester City last weekend but face a side in confident mood themselves. Hull sit one point and one place above Villa in eighth having only lost to Chelsea and City this season.
Steve Bruce's side have built their initial success on a solid home record, conceding just once at the KC Stadium to pick up two wins and a draw. The newly promoted outfit have, however, had their problems in front of goal in those matches. Two of their three goals at home have come from the penalty spot and the other from former Villan Curtis Davies via a Tom Huddlestone set piece, so their struggles from open play are apparent.
Paul Lambert's side will also be confident given that their hosts will be without top scorer Robbie Brady, with only Liverpool's Daniel Sturridge contributing to a higher percentage of his side's total goals than the Irishman (67% - three goals, one assist). While Villa will also be without their leading marksman, with Christian Benteke still sidelined with a hip problem, the young lions proved last week that they have enough firepower within their ranks to stay among the goals.
Having picked up an impressive WhoScored.com rating of 7.30 thus far, the aforementioned Brady will be a real miss for Hull, while Villa's star man this season will look to continue a fine run of form. Awarded the supporters player of the month for the second time running, Fabian Delph's development has been superb and that much has been reflected in his match ratings from WhoScored.
Indeed, of all players to have appeared in all six of their respective sides' league matches this season only eleven players in the entire division boast a higher average than the former Leeds midfielder (7.49). What has perhaps been most impressive about Delph this season, however, has been his consistency. He's only joined by Olivier Giroud and Dejan Lovren of players that have picked up an average rating from WhoScored.com in excess of seven (out of 10) in six appearances thus far.
The 23-year old continues to rank extremely highly in a number of important aspects, with only three players in the league making more tackles (25) and only six making more interceptions (16). From an attacking standpoint, meanwhile, only five have completed more dribbles (15) and of all of those to successfully round an opponent on at least 10 occasions this term, only four have a better success rate from their overall attempts (75%).
It's fair to say that Delph is putting in his best performances in a Villa shirt nowadays but more pertinently there's a real belief that he can reach even higher heights for the club. He'll hope to inspire another victory for the Midlands outfit, who have won all four of their Premier League meetings against Hull without conceding a goal.
Find yet more statistics on Aston Villa and the rest of the Premier League, including live in-game data and unique player and team ratings at WhoScored.com. Follow @WhoScored and their editor-in-chief @martinlaurence7 on Twitter.