By Graham Hill
FORMER Villa striker Lewis Grabban is expected to miss out on tonight’ clash with Dean Snith’s side at the City Ground.
Ex-Villa manager Martin O’Neill stands in the way of Villa’s late play-off bid as Forest search for a fifth successive home win.
But Forest’s 15-goal top scorer Grabban is still suffering with an Achilles injury and is not likely to figure in the game.
Grabban was on loan with Villa last season as they reached the Championship play-off final at Wembley.
He scored eight goals for Steve Bruce but the financial uncertainty gripping the club last summer meant there was no chance of a permanent deal and he joined Forest from Bournemouth in a £6million deal.
Grabban also scored the equaliser for Forest in the dramatic 5-5 draw between the sides at Villa Park earlier this season.
But O’Neill told reporters: “Lewis is definitely making very good progress.
“I know that the international break is just around the corner, I think the feeling is that, if he wants to come back and wants to be as pain free as possible, we will look at that.
“But I also know that he is a player we need and I’d like to have him in the side as soon as possible. We’ll look at that as well, too.
“He’s our leading goal scorer, he can find the net and that is something we very, very much need in the closing weeks.”