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Aston Villa FC vs. Manchester City FC

Villa Park

17th August 2008


Aston Villa v MCFC

After differing results midweek in the UEFA cup these two big City clubs meet for their opening premiership fixture.

Vital Quotes:

Mark Hughes talks about the opening game: 'Villa are a good side and have been for a couple of seasons now. They`ve certainly established themselves as one of the main teams in the top 10, which we obviously anticipate that we will be. So if we can take points off them early in the season then that might help us at the end."

Hughes then plays the psychological mind games: 'Villa had a decent result in Europe and had a little bit of travelling as well, maybe that will have an effect on them. I would imagine, given the 4-1 scoreline, they certainly weren`t up against the quality of opposition that we were up against.'

He talks about the comparrison of the midweek game and the Villa game: 'There wasn`t enough drive against Midtjylland and wedidn`t anticipate or read enough situations and nip them in the bud before they developed into opportunities for them, At the weekend you`ll see a different performance, we need to step up to the plate and certainly be a lot more dynamic and show a lot more personality on the field of play.'

Aston Villa FC Team News:

Luke Young is poised to make his Aston Villa debut at right-back following his move from Middlesbrough after not being eligible for the Hafnarfjordur clash.

Giant striker John Carew, who missed the Uefa Cup game with a slight calf strain, is expected to come into the starting XI at the expense of Marlon Harewood.

Centre-back Carlos Cuellar, signed from Rangers in a £7.8million deal this week, and midfielder Steve Sidwell are both struggling with calf problems and may miss out.

Player to watch: Ashley Young

His pace and eye for goal can be areal handful for any defence.

Manchester City FC Team News:

Mark Hughes will be forced into one switch at the back, with Richard Dunne ruled out through suspension after being sent off in the final game of the season at Middlesbrough last term.

Dunne's absence at centre-back could see Tal Ben Haim move across from left-back, with Javier Garrido and Michael Ball pushing for a start.

Stephen Ireland, who has been linked with a move to Sunderland, was on the bench on Thursday night and will be hoping for a starting berth.

Hughes remains short of options up front with Jo on international duty with Brazil at the Olympic Games and Benjani (thigh) and Darius Vassell (knee) out injured.

Bulgaria international Valeri Bojinov could take his place in the starting XI after Hughes went with Daniel Sturridge and Felipe Caicedo against Midtjylland and possible Ched Evans could put himself in with a chance of starting also.

Player to watch: Martin Petrov

The mercurial winger is City's main threat at getting the ball into the danger areas and likes to have a shot with his stinging left foot.

Match Facts & Stats

Aston Villa are sick of the sight of Manchester clubs as not only do City have a great record against the midlands club but United regularly beat them as well.

Villa have not beaten City at Villa park since an August fixture in 2002 when Darius Vassell scored the only goal

Ref Watch:

Phil Dowd - was in charge of our matchus horriblus in our final game of last season and has always taking a dis-liking to Dunne; but as he is not playing he cannot book him or send him off this time.

Match Prediction:

Despite City's poor showing in midweek; I fully expect a totally different side to come out and cause many problems for Villa. AVFC 0 - 1 MCFC.

Next Fixtures:

West Ham at COMS on Sunday 24th August with a 4pm kick off on Sky.

The journalist

Writer: Gavin Cooper  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday August 16 2008

Time: 4:41PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
1-0 City, muwhahahahahahaha
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16/08/2008 17:10:00
Brilliant preview Gavin. Nice one mate.
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16/08/2008 17:23:00
The best thing you play first match against a weak team, I think we very lucky.
city 81
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16/08/2008 17:30:00
Great use of the English language there.
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16/08/2008 17:33:00
It's going to define your season (Man City) as most neutrals are expecting the worst. Should be fascinating to see what actually happens.
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16/08/2008 18:06:00
Fascinating it will be. One thing guaranteed at City is a bumpy ride!
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16/08/2008 18:14:00
2-0 Villa, at a stroll
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16/08/2008 19:18:00
mackaavfc, city 81 is a Vital MC legend and he is from Kuwait. How's your arabic? ;) 8-1 to City.
Johnny Baguette
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16/08/2008 20:14:00
Here's a handy top satellite footy link for our worldwide visitors: - Got some excellent background music too!
Johnny Baguette
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16/08/2008 20:21:00
Come on stop thinking the worst, you got to be positive! Think positive good things will happen, think of the worst being negative and bad things will, maybe that explains City’s problem… Ask Buzz I told him this in forums a few weeks ago, he said he would think positive about Corluka staying and guess what – he did! Proof…
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16/08/2008 20:25:00
City 3 - 1 - Elano, Bojinov, Sturridge!
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16/08/2008 20:27:00
Anywhere I can watch City on TV? Or computer - free?
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16/08/2008 20:29:00
mackaavfc, Believe me, I speak English like Shakespeare, but becouse I'm very happy when I Know we will face you in the first games I Lost my words:) , JB , Thank you, And they say way you love Man City, Let them look to the Man city fans, The great Fans in the world.
city 81
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16/08/2008 20:57:00
Hughes thinks that Midtjylland are better than the sausage sellers that we played. Both as crap and unheard of as each other. Very very optimistic MCFC fans around here ( even there are only a couple.) You have been lucky against us recently but thankfully Vassell isn't playing. Without Dunne you will be hopeless against the likes of Young and Gabby although agreed that M. Petrov could cause our new fullbacks a problem. Realistically 3-0 to the Villa and we will be table toppers.
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16/08/2008 21:12:00
Your wishing Villa, get ready for your first loss tomorrow!
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16/08/2008 22:18:00
I couldn't have put it any better mcfcthriller.
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16/08/2008 22:20:00
Any man city fans planning on taking the trip to villa park tomorrow i wouldn`t bother if i was you,You will be facing a miserable trip home after drinking from the bitter chalice of defeat hands of the mighty villa.Get a refund and spend the money on hob nobs or whatever snacks you lot like in manchester instead,Because we are going to be all over you like a drunk prostitute with the horn.
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16/08/2008 23:48:00
Oh yeah good luck for the season ahead,Obviously Apart from sunday.
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16/08/2008 23:49:00
nice easy start to the season 2-0 Villa,lets face it city fans you ain't got a strikeforce so best result for you is 0-0 but it ain't gonna happen UTV
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17/08/2008 00:45:00
Then there's Bojinov.
Johnny Baguette
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17/08/2008 12:53:00
Villa may regret missing those chances, lucky for Villa we cant buy a goal, must Speak to Frank, see if he can arrange it.
Buzz Lightyear
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17/08/2008 15:47:00

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