This is the first game post-Ellis era. Villa have gone six unbeaten (five in the Premiership) and are in impressive form. The great thing to see is Martin O’Neill have set us up to be hard to beat, add a few quality players and we’ll be rocking and rolling! We could also have had a couple of wins (West Ham and Watford) if not for squandered chances and now we have a Saturday, 3pm kick off, home game.
LET’S FILL VILLA PARK AND WELCOME IN THE NEW REGIME, COME ON, WHERE IS BETTER TO BE ON A SATURDAY AFTERNOON?
Olof Mellberg said: ‘It is important to have a good record at Villa Park. We struggled there for most of last season and it is important to get off to a good start at home which we have done so far. There has been a good atmosphere for the two games but that comes with results. We need good performances and good results. That’s what gives everyone a lift at the club. Before last season, we had a really good home record. We were always strong at home and that’s so important. You can work hard away from home and pick up points here and there. But you have to be strong at home if you want to be up there and that was a really disappointing aspect of last season.’
Martin O’Neill said: ‘We’ve got points on the board but we have to keep the momentum going. That is important now for us, buoyed as we are, by winning on Wednesday. Charlton Athletic will obviously be a difficult game – it is a Premiership match, there’s no need to say anymore.’
Aston Villa Team News:
Gavin McCann faces a late fitness test on a calf injury he picked up v Scunthorpe. Martin O’Neill said ‘He’s had a scan and overall everything seems OK…Gavin is one of those players who usually shakes things off quicker than most and I’m hopeful he might be fit. If he’s fit, he plays.’
(from): Sorensen, Hughes, Mellberg, Ridgewell, Bouma, Whittingham, Samuel, Davis, McCann, Petrov, Barry, Hendrie, Moore, Agbonlahor, Angel, Baros, Taylor, Laursen, Djemba-Djemba.
Player to watch: Stiliyan Petrov
We need the same performance he showed on his debut and he’ll boss the game for Villa.
Charlton Athletic Team News:
Hermann Hreidarsson returns from suspension. Bryan Hughes and Matt Holland are doubtful with injuries. Andy Reid, Omar Pouso, Jonathan Fortune and Souleymane Diawara are closer to fitness.
(from): Carson, Young, Hreidarsson, El Karkouri, Fortune, Rommedahl, Kishishev, Faye, Ambrose, Holland, M Bent, D Bent, Hasselbaink, Holland, Ashton, Myhre, Sankofa, John, Walker, Lisbie.
Player to watch: D. Bent
Given the chance he won’t need asking twice.
Match Facts & Stats
Last season: Charlton Athletic 0-0 Aston Villa
Record in the Prem: Villa 8 wins, Charlton 3 wins, Draws 3
Record at VP in Prem: Villa 5 wins, Charlton 1 win, Draws 1
Mystic Mug is in fine fettle and says a Villa win, 2-0 with Angel and Agbonlahor on the scoresheet.