John Terry has recovered from rolling his ankle in midweek to make the clash at Nottingham Forest.
Our skipper makes his first league start since suffering a foot injury against Sheffield Wednesday at the start of November.
He partners James Chester, Ahmed Elmohamady and Alan Hutton in defence, ahead of Sam Johnstone in goal.
In midfield, Glenn Whelan returns for the first time since Boxing Day, alongside Conor Hourihane, Robert Snodgrass, Albert Adomah and Jack Grealish.
Up front, Scott Hogan starts again having scored his first Championship goal of the season against Bristol City almost a fortnight ago.
On the bench, Mark Bunn is in for Jed Steer, while Josh Onomah, Henri Lansbury and Keinan Davis provide Steve Bruce attacking options.
VILLA: Johnstone; Elmohamady, Chester, Terry, Hutton; Snodgrass, Whelan, Hourihane, Adomah, Grealish; Hogan. Subs: Bunn, Taylor, Elphick, Bjarnason, Lansbury, Onomah, Davis.