Aston Villa vs West Brom
Dean Smith’s side will look to put their 2-1 midweek loss to Manchester City behind them and keep their faint hopes of European football alive as they host West Brom in a Midlands derby on Sunday evening.
Villa are in 11th place on 44 points but they have a game in hand over some of the sides above them and are only five points off Everton in 8th.
West Brom were soundly beaten at Leicester 3-0 last night and are almost certain to be relegated now after giving themselves a glimmer of hope after two victories on the bounce.
Dean Smith started his pre-match press conference by providing an update on the squad and Jack Grealish.
Smith: “Jack Grealish is still out, Morgan Sanson is out, Wesley is still coming back but he may be available for the squad, so we’ll have a good look at him today and tomorrow.”#AVLWBA pic.twitter.com/DpvPvLlE8o
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) April 23, 2021
He went on to suggest that his team have to be focused on themselves ahead of this weekend’s game.
“We are hoping it will benefit us having the extra day rest. They need wins but the games are running out. When the first goal went in I felt Leicester were very good.
“We were seven points adrift with four games to go (last season). They (West Brom) are going to battle and scrap but we have to focus on ourselves.”
Smith on ESL
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 15: Dean Smith manager of Aston Villa during a press conference at Villa Park Stadium on October 15, 2018 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)
Smith also provided his viewpoint on the debacle that was the European Super League and that those clubs involved will now have to earn their respect back.
“All players and managers were not involved in discussions of any kind.”
“I think this will be a decision at executive board level. I believe there will be some punitive action. They will have to earn their respect before especially at board level.”
“I don’t think anybody in the community was supporting FIFA or UEFA. I think it was a sporting principal.”
“The fact that we are in the middle of a pandemic and it is about money again. The football community got together and made the clubs change their mind.”
Premier League to bring new rule in to prevent breakaway for good and Wembley Stadium could get additional Euro 2020 match