Premier League Preview: Aston Villa Vs Hull City

Brian RhodesSenior Analyst IDecember 4, 2009

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MAY 04:  Boaz Myhill of Hull City makes a save at close range from Gabriel Agbonlahor of Aston Villa during the Barclays Premier League match between Aston Villa and Hull City at Villa Park on May 4, 2009 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Premier League Preview: Aston Villa Vs Hull City, Villa Park, Birmingham, England, Saturday, 5th December, 2009, 15:00 GMT

The Villains will be looking for a repeat of last season's performance where John Carew scored the only goal in a tightly fought game in front of almost 40,000 fans.

Martin O'Neill will be hoping that John Carew can strike again as he returns to full fitness and a probably first team place after a hamstring injury. Stewart Downing will also be in the Aston Villa squad after a fruitful return to action in the Carling Cup victory over Portsmouth, scoring in the 4-2 victory.

Unfortunately for O'Neill, he will still be without the services of Wilfred Bouma (toe), James Collins (calf), and Curtis Davies (shoulder), who will all be absent with persistent injuries.

The Tigers are also suffering from a few injuries, with the major concern being Seyi Olofinjana, who is still out with a hamstring injury sustained whilst on international duty for Nigeria. Club captain Ian Ashbee is still out with a long standing knee injury.

Both clubs will be free of suspended players, with both clubs on a good run of form. Phil Brown's men have been performing valiantly since the return of Adam Pearson as club chairman which coincided with the long awaited return to fitness of club record signing Jimmy Bullard who has been in inspirational form since his return.

The Tigers have had two wins and two draws in the last four outings, most notably the one all draw against Manchester City's multi-millionaires last week. Villa have had their fair share of tricky fixtures of late, with a difficult game against Tottenham Hotspurs last weekend that saw them gaining a credible draw against this season's surprise package.

Phil Brown will be hoping to continue the clubs fine run of form for another week with some very tricky fixtures on the horizon in the lead up to Christmas, but O'Neil will be trying to maul the Tigers and get his Villains back in to the European spots.