By Dan Harrison
Gerard Houllier has been handed a double injury boost ahead of Villa's clash against rivals Birmingham City, with John Carew and Luke Young back in contention for the Second City derby.
Striker Carew has recovered from a bout of flu which ruled him out of Wednesday's Carling Cup victory over Burnley.
And Young looks to have shaken off the hamstring injury he sustained on the eve of Villa's goalless draw with Chelsea a fortnight ago and which ruled him out of the last three matches.
The news comes as a timely boost for Houllier, who will be without injured duo Gabby Agbonlahor [groin], skipper Stiliyan Petrov [knee] and suspended midfielder Marc Albrighton for Sunday's game.
The Villa manager also revealed full-back Habib Beye is a doubt for the Blues clash with an ankle problem.
"Gabby won't be involved at all," said Houllier. "John Carew seems to have recovered from his flu.
"We need everyone. Not having Gabby, it is good to have John and Emile.
"Marc Albrighton will be suspended. The boy is devastated - very downhearted. Luke Young should be involved."
Captain Petrov faces a lengthy lay-off after sustaining a knee injury in last Saturday's defeat at Sunderland.
The Bulgarian midfield player will not need an operation but is still expected to be out for between eight and 12 weeks.
"We thought he would need an operation," added Houllier.
"I don't think he will need an operation but the time for recovery will still be the same - between eight and 12 weeks."