Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest were at one stage separated by only a few points but their campaigns have gone off in different directions. Villa are in the hunt for Europe thanks to an excellent run of form that has seen them take 16 points from the last 18 on offer. Forest are without a victory in eight with their 2-1 midweek defeat to Leeds their fifth loss in that sequence.
The last two games at Villa Park have both ended in wins to nil for the home side although they have lost to Leicester and Arsenal here in recent times. Forest have been a mess on the road losing each of their last four and registering just one Premier League win this campaign.
The reverse fixture came back in October with Emmanuel Dennis and Ashley Young both getting early goals in a game that ended 1-1. It is a Midlands derby so it promises to be a competitive local battle but the hosts will fancy their chances given the gulf in confidence and class between the two.
BetMGM sign-up offer: Get £40 in free bets when you bet £10
Not signed up to BetMGM yet? Here's how eligible readers* can take advantage of their welcome offer:
Deposit and place a £10 bet at odds of 1/1 (2.0) or greater.
When it settles, unlock £40 in Free Bets
*New customer only. 3 days to claim & 7 days to place a qualifying bet to receive 4x Free Bets: 1 x £10 Horse racing, 1 x £10 Free Bet Builder, 1 x £10 Acca and 1 x £10 Football. 7 day expiry. Exclusions apply. Stake not returned. T&Cs apply. For more information, visit begambleaware.org
Aston Villa vs Nottingham Forest match stats
An Aston Villa win is the obvious play here and it is just finding a way to make the price a little bigger. Backing both teams to score looked an option given Forest usually net at least once but Villa have kept two clean sheets here in a row. Stick with the tried and trusted of Ollie Watkins (who has eight in ten) to score and the hosts to come out on top.
Another way into the game comes through the cards markets and backing Brennan Johnson to be shown a card at any time. The Forest forward is an important part of the attack but he can be reckless in the tackle and has been booked six times already this season including in each of his last two. He is as big as 5/1 to be shown a card which looks worth taking.
Aston Villa vs Nottingham Forest: Squawka Says
Scoreline prediction: Aston Villa 3-1 Nottingham Forest
10 October 2022- Nottingham Forest 1-1 Aston Villa- Premier League
13 March 2019- Nottingham Forest 1-3 Aston Villa- Championship
28 November 2018- Aston Villa 5-5 Nottingham Forest- Championship
13 January 2018- Nottingham Forest 0-1 Aston Villa- Championship
23 September 2017- Aston Villa 2-1 Nottingham Forest- Championship
Villa tend to do well in games against Forest failing to lose any of their last five meetings and just one of their last ten. In games just held at Villa Park you have to go back to October 1994 for the last Tricky Trees victory here.