Aston Villa will be prepared to make one last push for European football as they take on Fulham on Sunday.
Aston Villa's form has dwindled in recent weeks after enjoying a sensational start to the season. Their dip in form has predictably coincided with Jack Grealish's unavailability through injury. But Grealish has returned to training and is all set to feature on Sunday and that will be a huge boost for Dean Smith's side.
Fulham have greatly improved their football over the past few months but wins have been largely elusive. As they approach the home stretch of this season's fixtures, Scott Parker and co. will be well aware of the need to start winning more as they look to escape the drop zone.
The Cottagers are currently on an eight-game unbeaten run away from home and they're a completely different side from the one that suffered a 3-0 defeat against Aston Villa at Craven Cottage in the first half of the season.
Villa most recently lost 2-0 to Tottenham Hotspur while Fulham come into the game on the back of consecutive defeats at the hands of Manchester City and Leeds United. However, prior to those two matches they defeated Liverpool at Anfield and will be hoping to produce yet another solid display.
Aston Villa vs Fulham Head-to-Head
In the last 10 matches between Aston Villa and Fulham, the latter have been the more dominant side. Fulham have won six while Aston Villa have won three. One match ended in a draw.
The last time these two sides locked horns was in the first half of the season when Aston Villa won the game 3-0.
Aston Villa form guide: W-L-D-D-L
Fulham form guide: D-L-W-L-L
Aston Villa vs Fulham Team News
Jack Grealish is all set to start against Fulham this Sunday after missing out on action for a month and a half. Wesley is close to a return but won't feature on Sunday as he is all set to play for the u-23s this weekend. Kortney Hause is back in training but it's not clear whether he will be ready for Sunday.
Doubtful: Kourtney Hause
Fulham have no new injury concerns. Tom Cairney continues to be sidelined. Bobby De Cordova-Reid could return to the side this Sunday. Marek Rodak is nearing a return after suffering a finger injury but Sunday will come too early form him.
Aleksandar Mitrovic could start for the Cottagers after enjoying a hugely successful outing with the Serbian national side where he scored five goals.
Injuries: Tom Cairney, Marek Rodak
Doubtful: Bobby De Cordova-Reid
Aston Villa vs Fulham Predicted Lineups
Aston Villa predicted XI (4-3-3): Emiliano Martinez; Matty Cash, Ezri Konsa, Tyrone Mings, Matt Targett; John McGinn, Douglas Luiz, Ross Barkley; Bertrand Traore, Jack Grealish, Ollie Watkins
Fulham Predicted XI (4-4-2): Alphonse Areola, Kenny Tete, Joachim Andersen, Tosin Adarabioyo, Antonee Robinson, Bobby Cordova-Reid, Harrison Reed, Mario Lemina, Ademola Lookman, Aleksandar Mitrovic, Josh Maja
Aston Villa vs Fulham Prediction
Aston Villa will be boosted by Jack Grealish's return. But the Cottagers have been in good form away from home and will play out of their skin for all three points on Sunday. This could be a cagey affair but we expect Villa to walk away with the spoils.
Prediction: Aston Villa 2-1 Fulham