Manchester City vs Aston Villa: Team news, match facts and predictions

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Manchester City will have the chance to go second in the Premier League when they take on Aston Villa on Sunday.

Leicester City’s shock home defeat to Southampton has opened up space for the champions to leapfrog the Foxes, and Pep Guardiola’s  City will be confident of victory against a struggling Villa side.

Villa sit 17th in the table, and Dean Smith will be wary of a relegation battle after watching the likes of Southampton and Everton find form in recent weeks.

City have plenty of firepower at their disposal and should leave Villa Park with all three points.

Team news

Aston Villa head coach Dean Smith says Jonathan Kodjia is doubtful due to illness.

Matt Targett returns after a hamstring injury while new loanee Danny Drinkwater could make his debut.

Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson should return to the starting line-up for his first appearance since he was sent off against Wolves on 27 December.

Long-term absentee Leroy Sane remains on the sidelines but Aymeric Laporte will return to full training next week.

Match facts

Head-to-head

Aston Villa have lost nine of their past 11 Premier League meetings with Manchester City. Their only victory in that run came back in September 2013.

City have kept a clean sheet in eight of the last 10 league encounters.

They have beaten the Villans by an aggregate score of 11-0 in their last three matches in all competitions.

Former Man City star Shay Logan training to become a plumber

Aston Villa

Aston Villa have earned six points from their past three league games, which is two more than they managed in their previous nine.

Dean Smith’s side have only managed one point from their 10 matches against teams who begin this match round in the top half of the table.

Villa have won only three of their 49 Premier League matches against the reigning champions, losing the last 11 in a row.

They have scored 27 league goals this season, as many as they managed in the whole of their most recent season in the top flight in 2015-16.

Jack Grealish has carried the ball a league-high distance of 5,624 metres and has created an unrivalled 24 chances following a ball carry this season.

Grealish has scored six league goals in 19 appearances, equalling his career-best tally set in the Championship last season.

Manchester City

Manchester City have dropped 19 points in 21 league matches this season. They dropped 14 points in the whole of the 2017-18 campaign and 16 points in 2018-19.

City have been trailing for five hours and seven minutes in the league this season, which is 22 minutes more than they had in their previous two campaigns combined.

Under Pep Guardiola, City have lost three of their four Premier League away games in January, winning only against Huddersfield last year.

They have conceded 14 goals in 10 away league games this season, three more than they did in 19 games on the road last term.

Since the start of the 2011-12 season, no player has scored more Premier League goals against newly-promoted teams than Sergio Aguero’s 31.

PREDICTION: 0-3