Aston Villa vs Liverpool: Team news, match facts and prediction

KEY POINTS

  • Liverpool could become the first team in top-flight history to win each of their opening four league matches in three consecutive seasons

  • Sadio Mane has scored six goals in as many Premier League appearances against Aston Villa. This includes the fastest ever Premier League hat-trick of two minutes and 56 seconds while playing for Southampton in May 2015
  • It's 120 years since the only time they began a season by keeping three successive clean sheets in the league.
  • Their current six-match unbeaten league run is the longest of any side in the Premier League prior to this weekend's fixtures

Aston Villa will test their perfect record against the Premier League champions as Liverpool visit on Sunday evening.

Wins over Fulham and Sheffield United have Villa sitting pretty before facing the Reds, Leicester City, Leeds and Arsenal over the coming weeks.

Liverpool have been hit by positive coronavirus tests for Thiago Alcantara and Sadio Mane, but have enough of a supporting cast to cope with the losses.

Liverpool have been rocked by Sadio Mane’s positive coronavirus test, adding to Thiago Alcantara’s absence, but still have enough about them to see off Aston Villa.

Dean Smith’s side have won both their games so far, against teams likely to be competing alongside them near the bottom of the table, but this is a whole different ball game.

TEAM NEWS

Aston Villa loan signing and boyhood Everton fan Ross Barkley could face Liverpool on Sunday.

Jack Grealish has overcome the dead leg he sustained against Fulham but Bjorn Engels and Kortney Hause are injured.

Sadio Mane and Thiago Alcantara are self-isolating after positive tests for coronavirus, while Joel Matip and Kostas Tsimikas remain out.

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Liverpool have earned five successive Premier League victories against Aston Villa, by an aggregate score of 15-3.
  • Villa’s only win in their past 19 top-flight home games in this fixture came in May 2011 (D5, L13). Liverpool have won on their subsequent six league visits.
  • This fixture has produced 20 away wins, the most in Premier League history: 14 for Liverpool, six for Villa.

Aston Villa

  • Villa haven’t won each of their opening three top-flight games in a season since 1962-63.
  • It’s 120 years since the only time they began a season by keeping three successive clean sheets in the league.
  • Their current six-match unbeaten league run is the longest of any side in the Premier League prior to this weekend’s fixtures.
  • Dean Smith’s side are vying to win three consecutive matches in the division for the first time since April 2010.
  • The Villans haven’t beaten the reigning Premier League champions at home in 18 attempts since coming from 2-0 down to win 3-2 against Arsenal in December 1998 (D7, L11).

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Liverpool

  • Liverpool could become the first team in top-flight history to win each of their opening four league matches in three consecutive seasons.
  • The Reds have attempted 61 shots in their three league games this season – 17 more than any other side prior to the weekend’s fixtures.
  • Sadio Mane has scored six goals in as many Premier League appearances against Aston Villa. This includes the fastest ever Premier League hat-trick of two minutes and 56 seconds while playing for Southampton in May 2015.
  • Mane can become the first Liverpool player to score in four consecutive away league matches since Daniel Sturridge’s six-match streak between April and October 2013.
  • Andy Robertson has provided a goal or assist in seven of his past eight league appearances for Liverpool, only failing to do so against Chelsea in this run.

PREDICTION: 0-2

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