All eyes will be on Villa Park tonight as Aston Villa take on Middlesbrough in the Championship (KO 19:45)
With both sides well fancied to gain promotion this season, all the money has recently come in for Garry Monk’s Middlesbrough, Bet365 reports this week.
In what looks to be one of the best games from this weekend’s fixtures in the Championship, Aston Villa travel to Cardiff looking to pick up their first win of the season. Villa have spent during the summer in an attempt to make it back to the Premier League, but they face a tough to beat, orgainsed Cardiff team this weekend who certainly won’t roll over.
Aston Villa v Middlesbrough What are the odds?
Villa made a great start to their opening game last week, taking an early lead against Hull before conceeding and finishing with a 1-1 draw in that. They will have been disappointed to only pick up a draw in their opening home game, especially as they were fantastic in the first half, but they look to bounce back here against Cardiff.
Last weekend Cardiff managed to scrape a 1-0 victory against Burton Albion, a good result at what is a tough place to visit. They should be looking at a top half finish and will know that at home they have the beating of anyone, so will fancy their chances despite Aston Villa being the visitors.
Neil Warnock’s side started the 2017/18 Championship campaign with an away win at Burton and will be hoping to make it back to back league wins in the Welsh capital. Villa on the other hand will be seeking their first three points of the season after a 1 all draw with Hull last week.
Both sides made wholesale changes for their midweek Carabao Cup fixtures and are expected to revert back to their stronger lineups on Saturday. Lee Peltier, Sol Bamba and Kenneth Zohore are all set to return for the Bluebirds after being rested for their extra time win over Portsmouth.
The Villans are expected to be back to full strength and could hand a league debut to former Blackburn Rovers and QPR defender Chris Samba, who is likely to partner John Terry in the heart of defence.
At the other end of the pitch Bruce has a number of options to choose from including Scott Hogan and last week’s goal scorer Gabby Agbonlahor. But Jonathan Kodjia could miss the match with an ongoing injury.
The Bluebirds have a decent home record against Villa, losing just two of their last 13 meetings at the Cardiff City Stadium, keeping eight clean sheets. However Bruce has been victorious in nine of his last 11 previous managerial meetings with Warnock and will be hoping for another positive result on Saturday.
Kenneth Zohore has scored 12 Championship goals so far this year and is 5/1 to open the scoring.
If last week is anything to go by then this game could well be low on goals. With Cardiff tough to beat at home and Villa yet to hit the ground running I’m going for a 1-1 correct score at 11/2.
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