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Villa v Southampton stats: Bacuna the key against Saints

Longtime Academy Director Jones to retire at end of August FT: Villa 0-0 Southampton - Full report to follow
Villa v Southampton stats: Bacuna the key against Saints

Villa will be solely focused on their performance on the field when they host Southampton this weekend, looking to put a poor run of results behind them. The 3-2 win at St. Mary's earlier in the season will be evidence enough that they are capable of returning to winning way and bring us the stats ahead of the game.

The Saints suffered a disappointing result of their own last time out and will be equally keen to bounce back, having looked a less effective attacking threat in the absence of the injured Jay Rodriguez against Cardiff.

They'll need to improve at the opposite end as well, having conceded at least three goals in three of their last four away matches.

With Villa 'very strong' at coming back from losing positions according to's team characteristics, the match forecast predicts that if the home side were to go behind they would be 'very likely' to stir back into action.

As many as four of Villa's nine league wins this season have come from a losing position thus far.

Paul Lambert, however, will hope that it doesn't come to that and will be expecting a strong defensive display this weekend.

The manager will also be confident of having Leandro Bacuna back available, with the Dutchman showing his ability to have an impact at either end since his summer arrival.

Of all players to have appeared at full-back this season, only Seamus Coleman has scored more goals than Bacuna (5), with 17 of the 22-year old's 25 starts having come from right-back.

With 35 shots to his name this season, only Aleksandar Kolarov and Branislav Ivanovic have had more of all the defenders in the Premier League.

It's little surprise then that Villa have scored more goals per game (1.12) with the versatile Dutchman in the starting XI than without him (0.88) but his positive impact isn't purely from an attacking perspective.

Indeed, the team has conceded 1.4 goals per game when Bacuna has started compared to 1.75 when he hasn't.

In turn, Villa's goal difference of -7 in the 25 games he's played from kick-off is equal to that of just eight that he hasn't (also -7).

The former Groningen man missed last week's defeat to Palace with a hamstring problem but is in contention to return against Southampton.

Villa have clearly missed Bacuna when he has been absent given that they have averaged 1.24 points per game when he has started compared to 0.38 per game in the eight games that he hasn't been in the XI.

Whether it be in defence or midfield, Villa could certainly utilise Bacuna's versatility in the run-in, but Lambert will have faith in a side that have stood up to a challenge on more than one occasion during his tenure regardless.

Find yet more statistics on Villa and the rest of the Premier League, including live in-game data and unique player and team ratings at Follow @WhoScored and their editor-in-chief @martinlaurence7 on Twitter.

AVFC Official
By @AVFCOfficial 18th April 2014
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