Aston Villa predicted line-up vs Burnley with Unai Emery to stick to guns and unleash £52m star

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The predicted starting XI for Aston Villa against Burnley plus the latest team news and injury updates.

Aston Villa couldn’t have had a better week, bouncing back from their thumping at St. James’ Park with emphatic 4-0 and 5-0 wins over Everton and Hibernian respectively, the latter incorporating an Ollie Watkins hat-trick. Unai Emery’s men are very much on song.

The trip to Turf Moor at 2pm on Sunday should, therefore, be eagerly anticipated by the travelling fans and probably by everyone in the Villa dressing room as well. Burnley showed enough in their 3-0 defeat to Manchester City to suggest that they aren’t total pushovers, but equally that the best teams will beat them. The Villa players probably feel like they aren’t so far out of that bracket right now.

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Unai Emery has seen his side score nine goals without reply since the opening-day defeat to Newcastle United.Unai Emery has seen his side score nine goals without reply since the opening-day defeat to Newcastle United.
Unai Emery has seen his side score nine goals without reply since the opening-day defeat to Newcastle United. | Getty Images

Emery made only one change between the games against Everton and the Europa Conference League qualifying play-off against Hibs, with Diego Carlos coming in for Matty Cash - so will Emery give some of his players a bit of a break after two games in four days, or will he stick with the team that won twice in such convincing fashion? Let’s take a look at how we expect the Spaniard to line his men up…

Goalkeeper & defence

The toughest decision Emery faces is in central defence, where he’s yet to decide on his best back four configuration and has Diego Carlos pushing for inclusion over Ezri Konsa, who played both of last week’s matches. Cash will likely return to the right-back position, so it’s most probably a straight shootout between Konsa and Diego Carlos for the last slot alongside Pau Torres.

Left-back Alex Moreno should return from his thigh injury soon but isn’t expected to be ready for this weekend, while Tyrone Mings is a long-term absentee after his horrible injury against Newcastle. There are no new scares that we’re currently aware of.


There are several injured players in the centre of the park, with Jacob Ramsey, Philippe Coutinho and Leander Denodoncker all expected to miss at least a couple more weeks with various minor injuries – none are expected back before the international break in September.

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Otherwise the players who started the last two matches, including the impressive Moussa Diaby, the club’s £52m record signing, are likely to keep their places, although summer signing Youri Tielemans will surely get the nod to start eventually. Aaron Ramsey has now signed for Sunday’s opposition, and could make his Burnley debut against his old club. At least his older brother won’t be there…


There are no injuries to the front line that we’re aware of, but it’s likely that Cameron Archer won’t feature while negotiations continue over a transfer to Premier League new boys Sheffield United. Watkins should lead the line as he looks to repeat his heroics from Wednesday night.

Colombian youngster Jhon Durán made a strong case for a start with a goal against Everton last Sunday, but may have to wait a little longer to get off the bench as Emery seems unlikely to shake up a winning formula. Besides, a 5-0 first leg win in the Europa Conference League gives plenty of scope for rest and rotation when Hibs make the trip south to Birmingham.

Full predicted line-up

Martínez; Cash, Konsa, Torres, Digne; Kamara, Douglas Luiz; Bailey, Diaby, McGinn; Watkins.

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