Match Preview: Wolverhampton Wanderers vs Aston Villa


Saturday 2nd April 2022
Premier League
@Molineux, Wolverhampton
KO: 15:00 GMT

Premier League football returns following the international break as Aston Villa make the short trip to take on Wolves in a Midlands derby.

Both sides come into the game in mixed form with both sides losing their last fixtures against Leeds and Arsenal respectively.

Villa lost their last two games at home to Arsenal and away to West Ham following a run of three straight wins and three clean sheets.

Wolves defeat to Leeds United followed two wins against Everton and Watford and two losses to Crystal Palace and West Ham.

With several players being on international duty it will be interesting to see the form and performances of both sides as they prepare for a busy schedule to end the season on a high.

Wolves have been very up and down and like Villa consistency has been the biggest issue. Their last game against Leeds at home is a good example as they were cruising at half time with a 2-0 lead and an excellent performance to then somehow lose 3-2 with some calamitous defending.

When they on song they are a very good side and are capable of giving anyone a game and they are firmly in the hunt for European football again next season.

Villa will be aiming to collect as many points as possible and see where they can get to with a top half finish the aim which will be further progress on last season despite the dependence of Jack Grealish last season and a poor start to this campaign which saw a change in management.

Steven Gerrard was coy but eluded to it being a busy summer as he will be backed by the owners to shape his own side in the hunt for European football with the fourth year of the owners ‘five year plan’.

Wolves won the league game at Villa Park earlier in the season with a last minute winner in a crazy second half that saw five goals. Villa went into a two-goal lead courtesy of Danny Ings and John McGinn before Romain Saiss, Conor Coady and Ruben Neves all scored after the 80th minute to pinch the points.

Wolves Team News

Bruno Lage will have to ring the changes as he has a number of absentees for the game.

Ruben Neves (knee) and Ki-Jana Hoever (hamstring) will definitely be out and striker Raul Jiminez will miss out the first of a two game suspension following his late red card against Leeds United.

Nelson Semedo will be assessed late on as he remains doubtful with a hamstring concern.

Possible starting line up:
Sa, Saiss, Coady, Kilman, Ait-Nouri, Johnny, Moutinho, Dendoncker, Podence, Trincao, Hwang

Aston Villa Team News

Manager Steven Gerrard will likely stick with the majority of the team that went into the international break.

Lucas Digne should return to left-back following a hamstring injury but any doubts and Ashley Young will be likely to start.

There should be no other concerns in regards to injuries and suspensions other than Marvelous Nakamba who is almost ready to return following a knee injury that has kept him out for some time after a fine start under Steven Gerrard.

Possible starting line up:
Martinez, Digne, Mings, Konsa, Cash, Douglas Luiz, McGinn, Ramsey, Coutinho, Watkins, Ings

Opposition breakdown:

Wolves are credited with building attacks from their own half and are one of the most prominent teams in regards to shooting from range meaning Douglas Luiz role in front of the defence will be key to closing down such opportunities.

Their weaknesses have been labelled as aerial duels and individual errors including giving away fouls in dangerous areas.

In regards to attacking, 19 of the 31 goals scored by Wolves have come from open play with 9 goals coming from set pieces, 2 courtesy of own goals and a single penalty.

42% of their attacks have come down the right wing with 34% down the left-hand side and only 24% centrally as they look to utilise the likes of Trincao and Daniel Podence on the flanks.

66% of their shots have come centrally with 52% coming from inside the 18-yard box, 42% outside of the box and just 6% inside the six-yard box.

Defensively, Wolves have only conceded 26 goals with 16 from open play, 5 from penalties, 4 from set pieces and single own goal.

67% of the shots conceded from opposition sides have come centrally with 56% of shots being inside the 18-yard box, 34% coming from outside the box and 9% within the six-yard box.

Raul Jiminez is top scorer so far this season with 6 goals and he also leads with assists with 3 (tied with Daniel Podence).

Their highest rated player statistically based on their position is Rayan Ait-Nouri.

Wolves are 10th in the ‘home table’ with 6 wins, 2 draws and 7 defeats in comparison to Aston Villa who themselves sit 10th in the away table with 6 wins, 0 draws and 9 losses on the road.


Head to Head record:

Wolves 42 wins, 33 Draws, Aston Villa 56 wins

Last five meetings:

16 Oct 2021 – Aston Villa 2-3 Wolves (Premier League)
06 Mar 2021 – Aston Villa 0-0 Wolves (Premier League)
12 Dec 2020 – Wolves 0-1 Aston Villa (Premier League)
27 Jun 2020 – Aston Villa 0-1 Wolves (Premier League)
10 Nov 2019 – Wolves 2-1 Aston Villa (Premier League)

 

AVILLAFAN MATCH PREDICTION

The absence of Ruben Neves and Raul Jiminez are big for Wolves as both play such an instrumental role in the positive things that they do.

Of the 26 goals conceded this season by Wolves, seven of them have come in their last five home games.

Villa have won three of their last five home games with each win bringing a clean sheet.

As with any derby I can see it being edgy but if Villa can turn up from the off I fancy them to sneak a win by the odd goal.

Wolves 1-2 Aston Villa

 

Tip of the day
If you back the score prediction, the 1-2 win for Villa is available at around 17/2 currently.

Wolves win – 2/1
Draw – 21/10
Aston Villa win – 6/4

This game has seen tempers flare at times of late and I fancy it to be the same today.

A red card to be shown is available at 3/1 and Joao Moutinho to be booked is available at 7/2 which would not be a surprise. Douglas Luiz is 9/5 to be shown a card.

With the set pieces Wolves have been prone to giving away, set pieces could be key and Lucas Digne and Philippe Coutinho.

Coutinho is 23/10 to score any time and 5/1 first or last goalscorer.
Digne is 18/1 to score any time and 40/1 first or last goalscorer.

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Original Source: A Villa Fan

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