West Brom v Aston Villa, Saturday 15:00
West Brom fans will find it difficult to recall a time where they would have gone into a derby against Aston Villa as big a favourite as they will tomorrow with Betvictor offering free bets and giving odds of evens on the home side prevailing as well as free betting opportunities.
The Baggies have won just two of the eleven Premier League encounters between the two sides and can complete their first top tier double over the Villans for almost fifty years should they claim victory on Saturday.
Roy Hodgson’s men managed a 2-1 victory at Villa Park earlier on this season and will be keen to condemn the Birmingham club further as Alex McLeish finds his side embroiled in a fight for their very survival in England’s top flight.
Albion currently fins themselves in tenth but can make the jump to eighth spot with a win this weekend, providing that Fulham and Liverpool falter in their meetings with Everton and Norwich, respectively.
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The hosts have played some of their best football away from home this season, showcased in last weekend’s 1-0 win at Liverpool but they have managed to keep clean sheets in over 40% of their home matches this season and will be keen to increase that figure against one of the worst attacks in the Premier League.
Hodgson has no new injury concerns but is hoping to welcome back James Morrison following a month on the sidelines while Marc Antoine-Fortune looks likely to return after missing the Anfield fixture.
Villa have a considerable boost of their own after it was announced that Richard Dunne is likely to start after two-and-a-half months out with injury.
While that may bring confidence at the back, the Birmingham club have struggled to score since Darren Bent was ruled out for the season some months ago, averaging just over a gola per game this term.
With QPR, Wigan and Bolton all showing signs of improvement, Villa desperately need to bag a win in order to seal their survival, lest they be dragged into the drop zone.
The worst position Aston Villa can find themselves in after this weekend may be 17th but that won’t bring any comfort to fans of the club, who are calling for the head of their manager.