• Analysis

Match Preview: Aston Villa vs Liverpool

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Aston Villa welcome Premier League leaders Liverpool to the Villa Park stadium in the 11th round of the 2019-20 campaign.

European champions Liverpool travel to Birmingham, looking to maintain their unbeaten record in top-flight English football this season.

Jurgen Klopp’s side is the only undefeated side in the Premier League and sits on the top of the table with 28 points out of 30 available.

Their clash with newly-promoted Aston Villa comes on the back of an exciting Carabao Cup meeting with Arsenal, which finished 5-5 in the regular 90 minutes. The Reds had the cool heads in the penalty shootout and booked their place in the quarter-finals of the competition.

The Lions also progressed into the next round with a 2-1 win over Wolverhampton on Wednesday evening. In the quarter-finals, they’ll face non-other-than Liverpool, although the Reds might have to forfeit the match with FIFA Club World Cup obligations in the same period.

It was Villa’s third win from their last four outings in all competitions, with their only defeat coming at the Etihad Stadium against Manchester City over the last weekend.

Team news

Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish should recover in time to face the Champions League winners, having sat out the Carabao Cup game vs Wolverhampton.

Forward Keinan Davis could miss the game on the other hand, as he sustained a hamstring problem during the midweek clash with the Wolves.

Mohamed Salah will return for the Reds after watching last weekend’s encounter with Tottenham from the sidelines.

Naby Keita is a doubt for Liverpool because of a calf strain, while Joel Matip is definitely out with a knee injury.

Stats

Aston Villa could go unbeaten in five successive Premier League home matches for the first time since November 2014 to January 2015.

However, Villa have lost 15 of their past 16 league fixtures against established top-six opposition, drawing the other game versus Manchester City four years ago.

Liverpool have equalled the Premier League record of 28 points after the opening 10 fixtures. All three teams who made a similar start (Chelsea in 2005-06, Manchester City in 2011-12 and 2017-18) went on to win the title that season.

The Reds have won five successive league matches away to Villa – their best run in this fixture – scoring 13 goals and only conceding one. Aston Villa’s solitary Premier League victory in the past 18 meetings at home came in May 2011 (D5, L12).

Thirteen of the 16 goals conceded by Villa this season have come after half-time. They would be third in the table, and eight points better off, based on first-half scores.

Liverpool also matched their best record after 10 matches of a top-flight campaign. On the three previous occasions, they also won their 11th league fixture.

The Reds have gone 27 league matches unbeaten, winning 18 of the past 19. Their most recent defeat came at Manchester City on 3 January. They have scored in 19 successive league matches since a goalless draw away to Everton in March.

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