Competition: Premier League – Swansea City vs. Aston Villa
Venue: Liberty Stadium, Saturday 19 March – 13:30 ET (17:30 GMT – Live on Sky Sports)
Match Odds: Swansea City 8/13 Draw 13/5 Aston Villa 19/4
Swansea City host bottom-placed Aston Villa in this weekend’s Saturday evening fixture, in a game Swansea need to win to all but secure their Premier League status for next season. For Villa it’s also a must-win match or they could potentially be 13 points from safety.
Swansea will be pleased that they have picked up six points from their last three matches, picking up wins at the Emirates against Arsenal and beating fellow strugglers Norwich City to ease relegation fears.
Last week’s defeat away at Bournemouth was disappointing but shouldn’t act as too much of a distraction as they still scored two goals and continued to show courage throughout.
The Swans have only picked up five wins at the Liberty this season – an amount supporters will be unhappy with, but the fans are still firmly behind their team after what has been a tough campaign.Embed from Getty Images
Head coach Francesco Guidolin is expected to be back in the dugout having missed the last few matches with a chest infection. Alan Curtis has done well in the Italian’s absence and deserves further credit for the job he’s done this year.
Aston Villa might as well be thinking about playing in the Championship next season. They have been woeful all season and haven’t been able to produce anywhere near enough quality to stay up.
The West Midlands club have been in turmoil since the second week of the season and three wins is just not good enough at all for any team in the top division.
Upcoming fixtures don’t come easy for Villa with Chelsea to visit next week before they welcome Bournemouth to Villa Park. More off-field problems saw Chief Executive Tom Fox resign on Thursday afternoon.Embed from Getty Images
Remi Garde still believes he can keep the team in the Premier League but it seems like he’s fighting a lost cause. They just don’t seem up for the fight. But if they have belief they could just pull off the most miraculous escape.
A win here could just trigger something special if the Villains get it. But that’s a tall order.
The reverse fixture was the final match in charge for former manager Tim Sherwood. A late Andre Ayew goal condemned Villa to a 2-1 defeat at Villa Park back October.
Swansea will be without Andre Ayew as he recovers from an ankle injury. Jefferson Montero could be welcomed back to the side after recovering from illness, while Madou Barrow is a doubt.
Aston Villa are set to welcome back Carlos Sanchez, though Adama Traore and Jack Grealish are still some way off from returning from their injuries. Micah Richards will hope to start but may have to settle for a place on the substitutes bench once again.
Swansea City last five: L/L/W/W/L
Aston Villa last five: L/L/L/L/L
Key Stat: Since Swansea got promoted to the Premier League, they have only lost once to Aston Villa and are looking for a fifth-straight win against the Villains.
Key Player: Gylfi Sigurdsson – The Icelandic midfielder has got nine Premier League goals this season and is the Swans’ top scorer. He is deadly on the ball at set pieces and finds the back of the net often. He is key to unlocking this poor Villa defence and is more than capable of creating chances for his team mates.
Swansea City 3-0 Aston Villa – Swansea should see this one out with relative ease. They have the home crowd behind them against a Villa side that constantly leaks goals but also fail to score them. Anything other than a home win would go down as a major disappointment for the hosts.