Aston Villa – Leeds: An intriguing clash takes place at Villa Park on Friday (watch live, 3pm ET online via Peacock Premium) as two sleeping giants of English soccer hope to push for European qualification this season.
Dean Smith has led Aston Villa to four wins from four to start the season as they are the only team left with a 100 percent record. Not bad for a team who survived relegation on the final day of last season.
Leeds United, led my legendary coach Marcelo Bielsa, have cooled off a little in recent weeks as they lost to Wolves last time out but they were handed a very tough start to the season after returning to the Premier League after a 16-year absence.
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Here’s everything you need to know ahead of this intriguing clash between Villa and Leeds under the lights at Villa Park, as these two teams know each other well from recent seasons in the Championship together.
Team news (INJURY REPORT)
🟣 𝗧𝗘𝗔𝗠 𝗡𝗘𝗪𝗦 🟣
— Aston Villa (@AVFCOfficial) October 23, 2020
📋 Your #LUFC Starting XI…
— Leeds United (@LUFC) October 23, 2020
Aston Villa only have Kortney Hause, Wesley and Tom Heaton out injured, as Smith will likely stick with a winning team after an impressive victory at Leicester City last time out.
Leeds were without captain and center back Liam Cooper last time out as he pulled up injured in the warm up. Kalvin Phillips is out for a number of weeks after a shoulder injury.
What they’re saying ahead of Aston Villa – Leeds
Aston Villa boss Dean Smith after four wins from four to start the season: “To come through those with maximum points certainly exceeds expectations. Sheffield United, Fulham and ourselves would have looked at those opening two games and seen an opportunity to pick up points. We managed to win both of them and then you go into Liverpool and Leicester, who are both top-five teams. Our feet our firmly on the ground because if you’re off at any stage it in this league, you can get a bloody nose very quickly.”
Marcelo Bielsa on Villa’s superb start: “The results that Aston Villa have had at the beginning of the season don’t need me to comment on them, they speak for themselves. For this institution like us it’s important. We need to show every week we deserve to be in the Premier League.”
Odds and ends (full odds provided by our partner, PointsBet)
This is a tricky one. Aston Villa (+130) are the favorites but Leeds (+200) have been unlucky with results and have probably played bette consistently this season. The draw (+250) will be a popular bet in this one.
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Aston Villa – Leeds prediction
I’m going to go for a draw here. I think Leeds will sit back and pick their moments against Aston Villa and the likes of Watkins, Grealish and Barkley will struggle to operate without a lot of space in attack. Aston Villa 1-1 Leeds
How to watch Aston Villa – Leeds stream and start time
Kickoff: 3 pm ET Friday
TV Channel: Peacock Premium
Online: Stream via Peacock