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Preview: Birm vs Aston Villa

Preview: Birm vs Aston Villa

Preview: Birm vs Aston Villa

Birmingham and Aston Villa go head to head in the 105th Birmingham derby on Sunday at 1pm. Villa's double over Birmingham in the season before last was the first in Premier League history, and Birmingham will be keen to get a win after a poor run of results. They have lost five of their last six, whilst Aston Villa have not won away from home in 6 months.

Birmingham have only won one Premiership game in six, but Villa have had consecutive victories.

The big news is that Mikael Forssell could be in line for a start as Jerome and Garry O'Connor are out injured, Garry McSheffrey is also set to miss out.

However, Aston Villa could be set to recall John Carew as he continues his injury return, but Ashley Young may struggle to get in the team.

Bruce hints Forssell could be goalscoring answer

"Mikael got a hat trick on Monday night for the reserves so he comes right into the equation. He has got over his stomach injury and his knee is okay - touch wood. We just hope, as we have for the last two-and-a-half years, that Mikael can have a six month run at it rather than being interrupted through injury. When he doesn't train he loses that yard of pace.

"If he stays injury free and maintains his level of fitness then Mikael will always be a goalscorer and we're crying out for one of those. But there's one hell of a difference between a reserve team game and Aston Villa on Sunday. As I keep saying, we just hope Mikael can stay injury free."

O'Neill warns players to keep calm

“I am aware this is not an ordinary game because it means so much to both sets of supporters.

"I have watched some of the past encounters and they have been pretty meaty affairs.

“But I am hoping we can play well, keep a clear head and show discipline.

“I certainly do not want us to end up as we did against Manchester United the other day with just nine players. It can happen, but we will have a much better chance of winning the game with 11 players.”


Birmingham (from): Taylor, Kelly, Ridgewell, Djourou, Queudrue, Larsson, Muamba, Nafti, Palacios, Jerome, Kapo, Schmitz, O'Connor, Forssell, Kingson, Doyle, Danns, De Ridder, Parnaby, Jaidi.

Aston Villa (from): Carson, Taylor, Sorsensen, Mellberg, Laursen, Knight, Davies, Bouma, Barry, Reo-Coker, Petrov, Young, Agbonlahor, Moore, Carew, Harewood, Berger, Gardner, Maloney, Osbourne.

Referee: Steve Bennett (Orpington, Kent)

Eyefootball Premiership Predictor

Birmingham 1-0 Aston Villa

Will one goal be enough to beat Villa? We think so, and Birmingham will reverse the form in this crucial match. It's these type of games were form changes and this intense derby is sure to be full of flying tackles and goalscoring chances.

Goalscorer: Daniel de Ridder

Score: Birmingham 1-0 Aston Villa