Game: Aston Villa vs Crystal Palace
Date: Sunday 12th July
Competition: Premier League
Venue: Villa Park
At a Glance
There are just four Premier League matches remaining as Aston Villa prepare to welcome Crystal Palace to Villa Park this weekend.
The hosts are four points adrift of safety – a gap that could widen should Watford and West Ham pick up points on Saturday.
A 3-0 loss against Manchester United on Thursday left Dean Smith’s team in 19th place and without a win in 10 games.
Opponents Palace are comfortably positioned in 14th place, with their position in the Premier League secured for another term.
However, Roy Hodgson’s team are on a run of four straight defeats since they resumed the season with a 2-0 success against Bournemouth.
They have since conceded 11 goals on a winless run which was extended by a 3-2 loss to Chelsea last time out.
Aston Villa have lost just one of their seven Premier League home games against Crystal Palace (W3 D3), going down 0-1 in December 2013.
After a run of four straight victories in the Premier League, Crystal Palace have now lost each of their last four in the competition. The Eagles have shipped 11 goals in those four defeats, having kept a clean sheet in each of their four victories.
Aston Villa could become just the second team in top-flight history to win a league match on all seven days of the week in a single season, after Tottenham in 1986-87. The Villans have won on every day between Monday-Saturday so far this term.
Aston Villa and Crystal Palace have met on 44 occasions, dating back to their first game in 1913.
Villa have won 18 times, drawn 14 and lost 12 games against the Eagles.
Left-back Matt Targett has returned to training having missed the past two games with a hamstring injury, while goalkeeper Pepe Reina is also expected to be fit having picked up a hamstring complaint of his own against Manchester United in midweek.
Dean Smith remains without Tom Heaton, Wesley and Bjorn Engels for Sunday’s game.
For the Eagles, Martin Kelly is returning from injury and will replace Gary Cahill after the centre-back picked up a hamstring injury against Chelsea in midweek.
Jeffrey Schlupp and James Tomkins remain sidelined for the visitors.
"I expect a well-organised (Crystal Palace) team with three front players who, certainly two of them have a connection with Villa in Christian Benteke and Jordan Ayew, and you can add Wilfried Zaha, who can hurt any team.
"So defensively we have to be good and we know the threat Crystal Palace have as well."