AVL vs SHF Dream11 Prediction: Aston Villa welcome Sheffield United for their first game of the season as their opening game was postponed. Villa’s first game of the season was away to Burton Albion in the EFL Carabao Cup which they won 3-1 with goals coming from Jack Grealish, Ollie Watkins and Keinan Davis after going down 1-0 in the first two minutes. Villa narrowly avoided relegation on the last day of the season after fighting back from 19th place, post-lockdown. To prevent a similar scenario, the Villains have invested wisely in the transfer window, signing Ollie Watkins from Brentford, Matthew Cash from Nottingham Forest, Emiliano Martinez from Arsenal and Bertrand Traore from Lyon. Their opponents, Sheffield United played Wolverhampton Wanderers on the opening day of the season but the game quickly turned sour for them as 2 goals in the first 6 minutes were enough to decide the result. To add to their misery, they were eliminated from the Carabao Cup after losing to Burnley on penalties. Between one team yearning to start their season on a positive note and one team desperately looking for their first win of the season, this should be a very interesting and intense matchup.
Fixture name & competition: Aston Villa vs Sheffield United, English Premier League
Date & Time: 21st September, 10:30 pm (IST)
Venue: Villa Park, Aston Villa
AVL – WDWDW;
SHF – LWDLD
Head-to-head (last five meetings): Over the last 5 fixtures, there have been 2 draws, 2 Sheffield United wins and 1 win to Aston Villa
Last meeting: Aston Villa 0-0 Sheffield United (Premier League, 17th June 2020)
Live Streaming: Star Sports Select Network, Disney + Hotstar
Aston Villa Team News
Injury Report, Unavailability: Despite completing the signing of Bertrand Traore from Lyon, he will miss out. Bjorn Engels, Tom Heaton and Wesley Moraes are all unavailable due to injuries.
Doubtful: There are no players who are doubtful for Aston Villa.
Expected changes: New signings Ollie Watkins, Matthew Cash and Emiliano Martinez are all likely to start. Dean Smith played a slightly weakened side against Burton which means a lot of first-team players will return to the starting lineup.
AVL Playing 11 (probable):
Emiliano Martinez (GK)
Sheffield United Team News
Injury Report, Unavailability: Lys Mousset and Simon Moore and both injured and remain unavailable for the AVL vs SHF Dream11 Team Prediction Game.
Doubtful: There is no doubtful player for Sheffield United.
Expected changes: Like Villa, Chris Wilder handed starts to some second choice players but will return to his strongest line-up for the Premier League clash.
SHF Playing 11 (probable):
Aaron Ramsdale (GK)
Bwin have offered odds of 17/10 for both Aston Villa and Sheffield United wins. Looking at last season’s Premier League table will be quite misguiding as one team finished in the top half of the table and one team escaped relegation by one point. However, there isn’t much to separate the two sides on current form and potential. Villa’s quality signings in the transfer window and Sheffield United’s lack thereof can prove to be the difference-maker during the AVL vs SHF Dream11 Match Prediction game. Dean Smith had a very difficult time in the league last season, suffering 21 defeats (only two clubs had more) compared to just 12 defeats for Sheffield United. Smith has identified key areas in the squad that need strengthening and addressed them well. Chris Wilder had a set system when they got promoted to the Premier League last season which a lot of top sides fell victim to. However, they have lost one of their best players in Dean Henderson as he has been recalled by Manchester United. The Blades faithful will hope that the 2019/20 season was not a case of the first season syndrome and they will recover from this setback. This game is a great test of character to both sides and it remains to be seen who emerges on top.
Ollie Watkins – One of the problems Villa had last season was lack of a recognized striker. They seem to have solved it by signing Ollie Watkins. He had a brilliant campaign with Brentford in the Championship and were unlucky to miss out on promotion. He scored 26 goals for Brentford last season with 25 coming in the league. He finished as the second-highest top-scorer as well and will look to do a similar job in the Premier League as well. As a Villa player, he scored against Burton Albion in the EFL cup and in the friendly against Manchester United as well.
Oli McBurnie – Sheffield have a similar problem as last season’s Villa – lack of a recognized goalscorer. McBurnie and McGoldrick, both had poor seasons in front of goal last season with most of the Blades’ goals coming from all team players equally. This season, with the stakes a lot higher, Chris Wilder will need players like McBurnie to step up and score some goals.
Jack Grealish – An important part of Aston Villa’s transfer window, was keeping hold of Jack Grealish. The Englishman was one of the main reasons that Villa managed to stay up in the Premier League. Despite playing for a poor side, he gathered 10 goals and provided 8 assists, whilst also creating the second-most chances, only behind Kevin De Bruyne.
X-factors (differential picks)
Conor Hourihane – The central midfielder had an impressive 2019/20 season, scoring 7 times and providing 5 assists. He will look to continue this form, providing balls in the final-third to John McGinn, Ollie Watkins and Jack Grealish. The Irishman also managed to score against Liverpool in the Carabao Cup last season.
Oliver Norwood – For players like McBurnie and McGoldrick to score goals, service needs to be provided by the likes of Norwood, Fleck and Lundstram. Norwood was a very useful player last season and created about 3 chances and put in 8 crosses per 90. He will be tasked with playing in the middle-third and picking attacking passes.
Emiliano Martinez – The new signing from Arsenal, Emiliano Martinez, can turn out to be an excellent player for them. In the second game post-lockdown, Bernd Leno suffered a season-ending injury that saw Martinez start for the Gunners. His performances wow-ed the fans and critics alike and led them to FA Cup glory the same season, beating teams like Manchester City and Chelsea on the way.