Aston Villa came back from behind against West Bromwich Albion to register a 2-1 win in the first leg of the playoff semi-finals. With a place at Wembley on the line, the Baggies won’t give up so easily, and one can expect them to make it difficult for Villa at the Hawthorns in the return leg.
Dean Smith would be proud that his side kept on persevering until the end and that brought about a positive result for them. With West Brom’s main threat Dwight Gayle suspended, Villa will have an excellent opportunity to reach back to back playoff finals. The Villans have been in great form in the past few months as they managed to go on a ten game winning run. They were outsiders to reach the playoffs, but now it seems like they have a significant shot at getting back into the Premier League.
Experienced defender James Chester is the only major absentee for the Villans. Dean Smith will be glad that he has a strong squad to choose from here.
Aston Villa Predicted Lineup Vs West Bromwich Albion
Jed Steer is likely to start in between the sticks once again. Tyrone Mings has been a crucial signing for the club in January, and he is set to start in the heart of the defence. He is set to be partnered Manchester United loanee Axel Tuanzebe. The duo would have been glad that they kept Jay Rodriguez quiet in the last game. Ahmed Elmohamady is set to operate as the right back. Wales international Neil Taylor would be his other fullback partner down the left.
The manager would hope that his defence can cut out the silly mistakes as West Brom took the lead in the first leg because of Villa’s sloppiness at the back.
Veteran midfielder Glen Whelan will start in the deepest role in midfield. Hourihane might have to be content with a place on the bench again after he scored the equaliser the last time around. Jack Grealish and John McGinn are set to partner in central areas. Grealish will be in a more attacking role in the middle. Albert Adomah is expected to keep his place down the right flank. His other wide partner would be Anwar El Ghazi who has emerged as a crucial player in this Villa lineup.
Tammy Abraham scored the winner from the spot in the last tie, and he came close to scoring on other occasions as well. There is no doubt that he will lead the line in this all-important clash.
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