Aston Villa have to be careful here. There is a worrying pattern from last season when they just fell apart when it mattered. Although they had a decent return to winning ways with a good 1-0 victory at Bolton on Saturday, they were thumped 7-1 by Chelsea in their last away game.
Their chances of finishing fourth appear to be slim now because they sit seventh in the table and are five points behind fourth placed Manchester City, with just six more games to play. Let’s have a look at their fixtures and see where they could potentially end up…
Wednesday, 14th April- Everton (H): Likely to be a tough game with Everton in good form and having a last minute dash for a Europa League spot. Could be testing physically and mentally as it will come on the back of their FA Cup semi-final against Chelsea.
Sunday, 18th April- Portsmouth (A): Pompey are relegated, and although they could have an FA Cup final to look forward to, Villa should be able to produce a professional performance and look to come away with all three points.
Prediction: Villa win.
Wednesday, 21st April- Hull (A): This is Villa’s game in hand and what a game it could prove to be for both sides. Hull are fighting relegation and this will be a real test for Martin O’Neill’s men.
Sunday, 25th April- Birmingham (H): How Birmingham would love to ruin any sort of chance Villa had of finishing fourth. A ferocious derby is in store, with there bound to be a great atmosphere. Should be an open game and that could play in to Villa’s hands.
Prediction: Villa win.
Saturday, 1st May- Manchester City (A): City could have run away with it by the time this penultimate game for Villa comes around. If there are twists and turns to happen between now and this game then we’re set for a real cracker. The problem for Villa is that City look the part and will have the benefit of playing at home.
Prediction: City win.
Sunday, 9th May- Blackburn (H): The final day of the season and with Blackburn having nothing to play for, and Villa potentially all to play for (be it Champions League qualification or not), Villa Park should be treated to one last show from the claret and blues.
Prediction: Villa win
Total points after 38 games- 65. Looks like the Midlands club will have to miss out on finishing fourth for another season, but will have the consolation of Europa League football.
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