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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Aston Villa vs. Portsmouth

Villa Park

04/06/2006

3pm

O'Leary To Play? Preview

Win this and we'll just about have enough points to be clear of the relegation dog fight. I dread to think what might happen if we lose it though. With only three wins at home this season, we can't take Portsmouth for granted, they might also be down there and struggling, but Villa have got to give it their all. This is hampered by yet another defensive crisis.

Vital Quotes:

David O'Leary said: 'If our home form was even half-decent we'd be a lot further up the league. We are making life very difficult for ourselves at home, because we have been beaten too many times at Villa Park. Our best stuff has been away from home. If we could turn any decent sort of form into our next five or six home matches we'll move to safety and up the league immensely.'

'Arry' says: 'I still think we have a big chance of pulling clear.'

Aston Villa Team News:

Well, Liam Ridgewell is fit, that is the good news. However with Laursen obviously being out, we are also missing Wilfred Bouma, Mark Delaney and Gary Cahill who isn't match fit following a long term injury which is awful news as he was set to deputies for our suspended captain Olof Mellberg in the back two. Aaron Hughes is facing a late fitness test on his calf strain and Luke Moore is back in contention up front having recovered from a strained muscle that he picked up training with the England U21 squad. (from): Sorensen, Taylor, De la Cruz, Ridgewell, Hughes, Samuel, Milner, Hendrie, McCann, Davis, Barry, Whittingham, Jumper Jumper, Phillips, Angel, Moore, Baros.

Player to watch: Kevin Phillips.

He is a scrapper and a winner. He should start every game up until the end of the season to help stave off any threat of relegation. Shame he won't be.

Portsmouth Team News:

Late fitness tests all round for Pompey with O'Neil, Primus, Hughes, Griffin and Mwarurari all hoping to prove their fitness. (from): Kiely, Primus, O'Brien, Karadas, Griffin, Taylor, Routledge, Mendes, O'Neil, Hughes, Davis, D'Alessandro, Lualua, Benjani, Koroman, Todorov, Priske, Pamarot, Diao, Ashdown.

For the Vital Pompey opinion: Click Here

Player to watch: Routledge.

Handy winger on loan from Tottenham.

Match Facts & Stats

Fact, we are poor, Portsmouth are poorer. It really is a scrap tomorrow!

Villa are 15th with 31 points. Best 14th, worst 16th after the game.

Portsmouth are 19th with 18 points. Best and worst case is to remain 19th.

Nothing short of a win will be good enough for either club.

Last season 3-0 to Villa.
This season at Fratton Park 1-1.

Ref Watch:

Mike Dean. 14 matches, 4 reds, 38 yellows.

Match Prediction:

Mystic Mug is in no doubt, Villa will huff and puff and pick up their fourth home win of the season. Mind you, he also tips club mascot as being played in defence, so I guess you need to take his prediction with a pinch of salt! 2-1 Villa.

Next Fixtures:

11/03/2006 (Blackburn) (5.15pm Sky)
18/03/2006 (Everton)
25/03/2006 FULHAM

Should sort the men from the boys eh!?
(away) HOME




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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday March 3 2006

Time: 4:01PM

 

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