Aston Villa host West Ham in the Premier League on Sunday afternoon looking to finally arrest their bad form in recent weeks.
Dean Smith’s side have tasted defeat in their last three games in the top flight, including a truly dismal performance last time out against Arsenal which saw them lose 3-1 and concede 14 shots on goal in the first half alone.
The Villa manager may finally be convinced to abandon his recent switch to a back three, and that could see him revert to type, especially with some notable injury boosts. With that in mind, here is a look at how Villa might line up for the clash with the Hammers at Villa Park today.
In goal, Emi Martinez will be hoping to bounce back with a clean sheet after suffering the ignominy of conceding three times against his former employers nine days ago.
If Smith opts to go back to his tried-and-trusted system of a four-man defence, that could see Axel Tuanzebe being the man to drop out, with last season’s reliable contingent of Matty Cash, Ezri Konsa, Tyrone Mings and Matt Targett taking their places.
In midfield, Jacob Ramsey could come into the side to offer some fresh legs and energy, especially after impressing with a goal as a second half substitute at the Emirates Stadium.
With the strike partnership of Ollie Watkins and Danny Ings failing to bear fruit just yet, Smith could make the ruthless call of dropping the out-of-sorts former Brentford marksman and sticking the ex-Southampton ace up front on his own.
Predicted XI: Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Mings, Targett; Luiz, McGinn, Ramsey; Traore, Buendia, Ings.