A sneak preview of Tuesday night's huge 'Bottom of The table' clash between Aston Villa vs Bolton Wanderers at Villa Park


Kick Off: 24th April 12, 1945 hrs

Venue: Villa Park

With Wolves condemning themselves to Championship for the next season, race for the remaining relegation places, or rather race to run away from those places has heated up.

Although Aston Villa currently enjoys a 5 point lead over 18th placed Blackburn but with only 4 games to go, anything but safety is guaranteed.

Bolton, on the other hand is 19th placed with 30 points but with 5 games in hand.

Villa’s recent dip in the form has been worrying. Only 1 win in last 12 matches have offered very less comfort to Alex McLeish.

Going into this game, there is more pressure on Villa rather than Bolton who more or less seem to have prepared themselves for a life in the Championship for a minimum one season at least. Bolton will go into this game with all out attack, keeping in mind Villa’s poor home form.

A victory for McLeish’s side will keep them 8 points from 18th placed Blackburn with only 3 games left to play, whereas victory for Bolton means they’ll swap places with Blackburn with 3 points adrift of Aston Villa with 4 games to play.

It’s a contest at Villa Park between a team with poor home form vs the one with poor away form. Villa has picked up only 18 points from 17 home games, whereas Bolton has picked up only 15 points from 16 away games. Bolton has yet to draw a single away game in this season and Villa is yet to win 2 games in a row at home. Well, Villa doesn’t have many games to achieve this stat as they have only 2 home games left. (Bolton, Spurs).

Aston Villa (H) vs Bolton (A) Form

Goals (Missing):

Villa and Bolton stand neck to neck in their goal scoring stats as Villa have scored 1.05 goals / home game compared to Bolton’s 1.06 goals / away game. Villa’s stat of 18 goals in 17 home games is the second worst in the Premiership.

Villains have scored only 4 goals in their last 6 games which is half than what Bolton has scored in the same no. of games. The major difference has been slightly leaky defence. Villa has conceded 1.29 goals / home game vs Bolton’s 2.06 goals / away game.

Injury Concerns:

Aston Villa:

McLeish is hoping that Agbonlahor and Clarke can shake off shoulder and groin injury respectively sustained in their previous game against Sunderland. Richard Dunne and Darren Bent are on the recovery road and Stilian Petrov is out for indefinite period with acute leukaemia. Fabian Delph is doubtful for the game.

Bolton Wanderers:

Bolton, from their season’s first XI has Fabrice Muamba out with a long term injury and Chung-Yong Lee, Ricardo Gardener and Stuart Holden are not expected to take part in the season. Joe Riley and Darren Pratley are doubtful for the game.

Build up to the Match:

  • In their last 10 Premiership matches, Aston Villa has lost just once to Bolton. This defeat came in March 11 at Reebok Stadium. (P 10, W 5, D 4, L 1, GF 23, GA 11)
  • In their last 10 Premiership matches at Villa Park, Aston Villa has lost just once to Bolton. (0-1 in December 06). The head to head record at Villa Park stands as (P 10, W 5, D 4, L 1, GF 23, GA 10).
  • Bolton has lost 5 of their last 6 away games. Only win came against Wolves at Molineux. Apparently Bolton has failed to score in all these 5 out of 6 games.
  • Apart from 0-4 victory against QPR on day 1, Bolton has not kept a clean sheet in rest of their 15 Premiership away games in a row.
  • Aston Villa at home has scored first in 7 out of their 17 games.
  • Bolton has conceded first in 13 of their 16 away games.
  • At Half-time, Aston Villa has led in only 4 out of their 17 home games.
  • Although Bolton has lost 11 out of their 16 away games, they’ve let the home side take a half-time lead only 5 times.

Prediction:

It will be a cagey affair at Villa Park. But considering Bolton’s precarious defending away from home, even a low scoring team like Aston Villa might nick this 1-0, with goal coming in the 2nd half.