Aston Villa vs Leeds Prediction
Friday 13th January 2023
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Aston Villa vs Leeds Prediction Match Overview
Following a brief interlude for the FA Cup, Aston Villa’s return to Premier League action sees the Midlands side host Leeds at Villa Park. Despite suffering a shock 2-1 home defeat at the hands of League Two outfit Stevenage with a mostly second-string side, Villa are in good form in the Premier League, having taken 10 points from their last five matches in a run that has seen them climb to mid-table stability in 11th position with almost half the season gone. This impressive run of form has seen them defeat three teams above them in the Premier League table – 3-1 at home against Manchester United, 2-1 away at Brighton and 2-0 away at Tottenham. New coach Unai Emery’s methods seem to have made a positive impression early on, as although they were defeated 3-1 by Liverpool at home, at no point were they ever out of the game and they had plenty of chances to make it 2-2 before Liverpool eventually found the third, decisive goal. They were also the better team in the second half against Wolves last time out but had to settle for a 1-1 draw.
Leeds have managed to stabilise their league position lately with two draws on the bounce. Firstly, a rather unexpected 0-0 draw away at Newcastle, during which they rode their luck at times but held firm and achieved a very creditable result, before coming from behind at home against West Ham to earn a 2-2 draw. Manager Jesse Marsch complained afterwards that even if Leeds had managed to win the game and earn three vital points, he still would have remained unimpressed as he was disappointed by what he characterised as ‘fear’ from his team. Leeds fans will be concerned that despite their excellent start to the season which saw them defeat Wolves and Chelsea to take 7 points from their opening 3 matches, they have since earned just 10 points from their last 14 matches, with back-to-back victories against Liverpool and Bournemouth now feeling like something of a blip. That said, they have the opportunity to go three matches undefeated here.
Aston Villa vs Leeds Team News
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: McGinn
Will Not Play: Dendoncker, Diego Carlos
Might Not Play: Bamford
Will Not Play: Dallas, Gray, Sinisterra
Aston Villa (4-2-3-1): Martinez; Digne, Mings, Konsa, Cash; Luiz, Kamara; Buendia, Coutinho, Bailey; Watkins
Leeds (4-2-3-1): Meslier; Struijk, Koch, Cooper, Ayling; Adams, Roca; Gnonto, Aaronson, Summerville; Rodrigo
Aston Villa vs Leeds Prediction Analysis
While it can be argued that controlling the midfield is important for any football match, here it takes on extra importance because both sides are at their most effective when attacking quickly into space. While it would not be accurate to characterise either side as counter-attacking outfits, they have proven themselves to be adept at counter-pressing and transitioning rapidly into attack. Therefore, it’s important for Luiz and Kamara for Villa, Adams and Roca for Leeds to take care of the ball well first and foremost, and to work well as a pairing in terms of knowing when to supplement the attack without leaving their sides exposed.
If either side finds themselves overrun in midfield, we’re confident that this will be the losing side, because both teams have displayed defensive fragilities this season that cannot be ignored. Recently, however, it’s Leeds who find themselves in the situation of shipping over two goals per game over their last 10 games, 21 in 10 matches. Aston Villa have been more defensively stable of late, limiting both Manchester United and Brighton to one goal apiece and keeping a clean sheet versus Tottenham, but interestingly suffered against Liverpool’s more direct attacking approach. It must be noted that Leeds attack in much the same manner, and therefore a clean sheet for either side seems unlikely.
In a match such as this where the midfield battle is likely to be keenly and at times ferociously contested, we look to the wide areas as to where the available space is likely to be. Villa in particular would seem to be well-poised to take advantage of this likely scenario, with both Digne and Cash available as capable attacking full-backs able to support the likes of Bailey and Buendia to stretch the Leeds defence and create more room in the middle of the park for Watkins and Coutinho in support to operate in. Leeds have plenty of dangerous outlets themselves in wide areas, particularly Gnonto and Summerville who have both been in impressive form for the West Yorkshire outfit, and they will be looking to take advantage of Villa’s forays forward as they will likely see less of the ball and will need to attack directly and with purpose every time they gain possession.
Beat the Bookmaker Aston Villa vs Leeds Prediction
Leeds represent a sterner test for Villa than the form tables may appear to suggest, as tactically they can pose a problem as Villa’s better defensive performances have come against teams who like to probe and pass their way through. Liverpool, despite their inconsistent showings this season, managed to put Villa under a huge amount of pressure at times by employing more direct tactics which helped to blow apart Villa’s low block when out of possession. When out of possession, Villa like to operate with what resembles a 6-2-2 formation which is designed to frustrate the opposition but it was severely tested by a more direct approach. Therefore, we do think that Leeds will have their moments and will score, but the Midlands side should be able to take advantage of Leeds’ defensive weakness and emerge with a hard-fought home win.
Aston Villa 2-1 Leeds
Beat the Bookmaker Aston Villa vs Leeds Prediction – Aston Villa Odds:
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