Football News

Sheffield United vs Aston Villa predicted XIs: Confirmed team news and probable lineups

By Squawka News

Published: 15:45, 2 February 2024

Sheffield United and Aston Villa both lost their midweek Premier League matches and will be looking to get back on track when they meet at Bramall Lane on Saturday evening.

Defeat was nothing new for the Blades, who went down 3-2 at Crystal Palace, as they have lost 16 of their 22 league games this season and are bottom of the table, nine points from safety.

Villa suffered their first home loss of the campaign by a 3-1 scoreline against Newcastle on Tuesday. They lost their spot in the top four to Tottenham on goals scored when Spurs won against Brentford the following night.

Can the Premier League’s worst defence stop Ollie Watkins?

Given Sheffield United’s wretched defensive record this season — they’ve conceded the most goals (54), shots inside the box (249) and xG (43.9) in the Premier League — Ollie Watkins is probably the last person they want to see rocking up at Bramhall Lane this weekend.

The England international has been a menace to defenders up and down the country this season, sitting second only to Mohamed Salah (22) when it comes to direct goal contributions in the Premier League with 18; 10 goals and eight assists.

Watkins’ latest strike came in Villa’s 3-1 defeat to Newcastle United during the week and was his 50th in the Premier League for Aston Villa. The former Brentford man has now scored 10+ goals in all four of his seasons in the top-flight. He’s the first English player to achieve this in their first four seasons since Robbie Fowler (1993-94 to 1996-97) and Alan Shearer (first five from 1992-93 to 1996-97).

Villa captain John McGinn has hailed Watkins’ achievement in hitting the 50-mark for the club and backed him to reach a century in the coming years; a feat that would see him overtake Gabby Agbonlahor (74 goals) as Villa’s record Premier League goalscorer.

“He’s obviously a striker and he does so much for the team but like any of them, he’s got eyes on the goals. It’s an amazing achievement – one I’ll never hit – hopefully, he can get to 100 very soon. I’m chuffed for him,” said McGinn.

‌“The way he works and his attitude, I think he’ll be playing at the top level for the next six or seven years at least. I’m sure he’ll get there and hopefully, I’ll still be able to watch him do it.”

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Sheffield United vs Aston Villa team news

Sheffield United will again be without the suspended Rhian Brewster, who completes a three-game ban. George Baldock, Daniel Jebbison, John Egan and Chris Basham are injured but Tom Davies and Max Lowe could be involved.

Ben Brereton Diaz went off to protect a hamstring issue at Palace and will be assessed before this game.

Villa are set to be without Pau Torres, Lucas Digne and Jhon Duran due to injuries but Jacob Ramsey is available again after returning as a substitute against Newcastle. Emiliano Buendia and Tyrone Mings are long-term absentees.

Bertrand Traore is unlikely to feature even though his Burkina Faso team have now been eliminated from the Africa Cup of Nations, but Villa bolstered their attacking options this week by signing winger Morgan Rogers from Middlesbrough.

Sheffield United vs Aston Villa predicted line-ups

Sheffield United (4-1-4-1): Foderingham; Bogle, Ahmedhodzic, Robinson, Trusty; Souza; McAtee, Hamer, Brooks, Brereton Diaz; Osula.

Aston Villa (4-4-2): Martinez; Moreno, Konsa, Lenglet, Cash; McGinn, Luiz, Kamara, Tielemans; Diaby, Watkins.


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