Aston Villa vs. Swansea City  2 - 0


Premier League preview: Aston Villa v Swansea

13 September 2012 09:22

Aston Villa won a first point under Paul Lambert at Newcastle and it may provide much-needed spark ahead of Saturday's match with Swansea.

Villa made the trip to St James' Park on the back of defeats against West Ham and Everton but held Europa League participants Newcastle to a 1-1 draw.

The result offered further optimism for the Villa Park faithful given their run of three consecutive defeats on Tyneside, which included a 6-0 drubbing in August 2010.

Lambert's decision to drop veteran goalkeeper Shay Given appeared to be stroke of genius after American Brad Guzan produced an inspiring performance between the posts.

On the injury front for Villa, Marc Albrighton and defender Richard Dunne are still a couple of weeks away from making their first appearances of the season.

Seen by some as candidates for relegation, Villa will be desperate to build on their draw against Newcastle with a positive display on at home against an in-form Swansea.

Many had predicted a bleak future for the Welsh outfit following the departure of promotion-winning manager Brendan Rodgers to Liverpool.

The club also lost Joe Allen and Scott Sinclair during the transfer window, while loan signings Steve Caulker and Gylfi Sigurdsson did not return.

However, new manager Michael Laudrup has continued Rodgers' legacy and instilled his own philosophy at the club.

Laudrup's arrival to Liberty Stadium has seen the club move into second position on the table, thanks to their lethal finishing in front of goal.

Swansea, dubbed the Barcelona of English football, smashed five goals past Queens Park Rangers in round one before netting three against West Ham without conceding.

They did concede their first goals of the season in an entertaining 2-2 draw with Sunderland but more worryingly for Swansea was an injury and suspension to key personnel.

Welsh left-back Neil Taylor was ruled out for the remainder of the season with a broken ankle, while Spanish defender Chico Flores received a three-game ban for his dismissal.

Laudrup managed to add former Twente defender Dwight Tiendalli as cover for the injured Taylor and he is expected to make the trip to Villa Park on Saturday.

Swansea were undefeated against Villa throughout the 2011/12 campaign and secured a 2-0 win on their trip to the West Midlands earlier this year.

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 38 +43 89
2 38 +32 78
3 38 +36 75
4 38 +35 73
5 38 +20 72
6 38 +15 63
7 38 +28 61
8 38 -4 49
9 38 -4 46
10 38 -8 46
11 38 -17 44
12 38 -10 43
13 38 -11 42
14 38 -11 41
15 38 -22 41
16 38 -23 41
17 38 -13 39
18 38 -26 36
19 38 -30 28
20 38 -30 25