Analysis: Villa team news at Blues

THERE is no place for John McGinn in today’s line up at St Andrew’s even though the Scot is back after a two-game suspension.

Boss Dean Smith had a dilemma in midfield with the heart of the team performing so well recently.

Smith has decided not to tinker with a winning formula and both Glenn Whelan – who was outstanding against Derby – and Conor Hourihane, following those two goals against the Rams, keep their places.

Captain Jack Grealish staying put was never in question and he keeps the captain’s armband – while McGinn has to be happy with a place on the bench.

The only other issue was at centre half where Smith is short-handed, but he has decided to move Kortney Hause to centre back alongside Tyrone Mings while Neil Taylor returns at left-back.

It is the line up that finished the game at Villa Park against Derby.

And perhaps it is a wise choice not to go with Jedinak as a central defender after attempts to play him there earlier in the season.

Interestingly, Garry Monk has made FOUR changes to his Blues side.

In come, Maikel Kieftenbeld, Jacques Maghoma, Wes Harding and Jota in place of Gary Gardner, Maxime Colin, Connor Mahoney and Kerim Mrabti

On-loan Gardner cannot play against his parent club in this fixture.


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