Aston Villa have started their Championship campaign in a pretty sluggish manner. The Villans drew against Hull City in their opening league game and then, they were outclassed against Cardiff City who defeated them by a 3-0 score line and it goes without saying that Steve Bruce needs to get victories under his belt soon.
Jaap Stam’s Reading are due to host Aston Villa on Wednesday at the Madejski Stadium in what promises to be a crunchy affair. Here is how we anticipate The Claret & Blues lining up for their upcoming game:
Manchester United loanee Sam Johnstone is expected to be handed the gloves once again, for despite leaking three goals against the Bluebirds, he was one of the better players and kept making stupendous saves time and again to prevent his employers from being humiliated.
Ahead of Johnstone, we expect a defensive wall of four men, comprising of John Terry and James Chester likely to be stationed once again at the heart of the defence of the Lions. The pair was beaten comprehensively in their last outing and they definitely have to come with something much better against the Royals.
Alan Hutton was absolutely shambolic this weekend and we expect him to make way for the young right-back in the shape of James Bree. On the left-back slot, we expect Neil Taylor to start once again.
Bruce is seemingly likely to go with a 4-5-1 formation and thus, Albert Adomah is anticipated to start from the wide area on the right as Ahmed Elmohamady suffered a nasty injury to his mouth in the last game and Andre Green should see himself being stationed on the left wing. A lot of offensive endeavours will have to be catered by these two wide men and they really have to hit the ground up and running right from the kick off.
Glenn Whelan has had a couple of really disappointing games so far but he is unlikely to be replaced at this stroke of the hour. Henri Lansbury is expected to be dropped, which should pave the way for Conor Hourihane in the middle of the park, alongside Tottenham Hotspur loanee Josh Onomah.
Right up front, Scott Hogan is likely to be given the nod to start the proceedings. He did look lively initially against the Wales based club in the weekend fixture but withered later during the game. He needs to up his consistency and brings a cutting edge to his game and he indeed has a huge role to play against Stam’s troops.
Here is how they might line up: