Aston Villa can relegate Dean Smith's Norwich this weekend providing they register their first home win at Villa Park since beating Southampton eight weeks ago. The Canaries' fate also rests with Burnley knowing if the Clarets beat Watford then Norwich will become a Championship club again.
To matters at Villa and Steven Gerrard was pleased with his side's defensive shift last week to claim a first point and first clean sheet in five matches. The head coach tweaked his system slightly last weekend and played a more compact midfield three with Leon Bailey and Philippe Coutinho playing much wider. Ollie Watkins also pressed well from the front. To Gerrard's thinking then going into Norwich and the boss has stressed how "the onus will be on us to go and create and open the door". This weekend's fixture against the bottom side comes after tough, concurrent games with West Ham, Arsenal, Wolves, Spurs and Leicester.
In midfield, Gerrard has stressed that Marvelous Nakamba is still a way off from starting in the Premier League while, in terms of the pecking order, Tim Iroegbunam is now ahead of the Zimbabwean given the 18-year-old's readiness to come in. The West Brom youngster was Villa's first change at the weekend and his performance really pleased the manager. There's every chance Iroegbunam makes it Villa appearance number three this weekend but, in terms of a start, the boss is expected to opt for Douglas Luiz once more in that central base-of-midfield position.
Predicted Villa XI vs Norwich City, 4-3-1-2: Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Mings, Young; McGinn, Douglas Luiz, Buendia; Coutinho; Ings, Watkins.
BirminghamLive's predicted Aston Villa XI vs Norwich City
Squad from: Olsen, Sinisalo, Chambers, Chrisene, Chukwuemeka, Iroegbunam, O'Reilly, J.Ramsey, Nakamba, Bailey.
Doubtful: Hause, Sanson, Traore.
Ruled out: Digne.