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Aston Villa: Ashley Young ‘expected’ to start vs Liverpool

Aston Villa: Ashley Young ‘expected’ to start vs Liverpool -Aston Villa News

Aston Villa manager Steven Gerrard will keep faith with Ashley Young against Liverpool rather than restoring Matt Targett to the line-up, Ashley Preece has predicted

The lowdown

Young has started five Premier League games after returning to Villa Park from Inter Milan, including the last three.

He’s been used as a left midfielder and central midfielder but slotted in at left-back against Leicester City to cover for a sidelined Matt Targett.

Targett was missing after sustaining a head injury in the clash with Manchester City.

But Gerrard says the £15.3million-rated Englishman is ‘ready to go’ ahead of Saturday’s trip to Anfield, having taken a full part in training this week.

The new boss’ predecessor Dean Smith hailed Targett as a ‘standout’ player in the Villa ranks.

The latest

Revealing his predicted XI for Birmingham Live, Preece wrote that the Young was part of a back four that ‘performed superbly’ against Leicester and is ‘expected’ to start once again.

Targett, he says, is set to be named amongst the substitutes.

Elsewhere, Preece reckons John McGinn, Marvelous Nakamba and Douglas Luiz will start in midfield, with Jacob Ramsey, Ollie Watkins and Emiliano Buendia forming the frontline.

The verdict

How good was Young against Leicester? Well he couldn’t match the SofaScore rating of opposite full-back Matty Cash or two-goal centre-half Ezri Konsa (both 8.2), but he did still pick up a solid 7.0.

The 36-year-old impressively won seven of the 10 ground duels he contested and also recorded two clearances and one block, showing good defensive instincts and bite in the tackle.

Gerrard may hope that he can offer more offensively when called upon – he didn’t create a chance against the Foxes and only managed one cross – but that’s a tough ask against title-chasing Liverpool, where that solidity at the back will be crucial.

In other news, Villa have been offered this UCL star.

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Article title: Aston Villa: Ashley Young ‘expected’ to start vs Liverpool

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