Kevin Phillips continues his comeback in a strong reserves line up against Manchester City tonight (kick off 7pm at the Bescot Stadium/Walsall).
Phillips, who has been out for two months, will be joined by Luke Moore as well as Stuart Taylor, Ulises de la Cruz, Liam Ridgewell and Peter Whittingham.
The reserves are third in the FA Premier reserve League (north) with two games in hand and just eight points behind top of the tree Middlesbrough.
VILLA: Taylor, de la Cruz, O'Halloran, Green, Ridgewell, Whittingham, Ward, Gardner, Moore, Phillips, Agbonlahor. Subs: Paul, Olejnik, Kabeya, Bridges, Osbourne.
Phillips is hoping to play the full 90 minutes tonight to play himself into contention for the weekends fourth round FA Cup clash with Port Vale at Villa Park. The 32-year-old striker played 70 minutes in last Tuesday's reserves win over local rivals Birmingham City.
Phillips told the official site:
'It has been frustrating. You want to make an impression straight away at your new club and I got off to an ideal start by scoring on my debut against Bolton after just a few minutes. However, I have had injury niggles and this ankle problem has kept me out for nearly two months. The Villa supporters have not seen enough of me and I want to make up for lost time.'
He is also looking ahead saying there is a good 'chunk' of the season left and he wants to 'make an impression and play my full part.'
David O'Leary said: 'It is good to have Kevin back in contention. If he comes through the reserve game OK and suffers no reaction then I will be looking to put him on the bench against Vale. It is a boost for us to have him back.'
Manager Tim Sherwood has spoken of his disappointment - and shouldered the blame - for today's one nil loss to Stoke City.
All the stats from Aston Villa (0) vs (1) Stoke, Villa Park, 3/10/15 Att: 33,189
Statistics, damn lies and Aston Villa..
Bit of a mix and match today from manager Tim Sherwood's pre Stoke press conference.
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