Trio back available for Aston Villa ahead of Wolves clash

By Matt Maher | Aston Villa | Published:

Villa boss Dean Smith has been handed a triple fitness boost ahead of tomorrow’s derby with Wolves.

Danny Drinkwater could be involved for Villa for the first time since the Premier League's restart.

Smith has confirmed full-back Frederic Guilbert and midfield pair Danny Drinkwater and Henri Lansbury are pushing to be involved after recovering from injury.

The trio did not travel with the rest of the squad to Newcastle in midweek but instead remained at Bodymoor Heath to work on their conditioning. They will now provide Smith with further options as Villa prepare for their fourth match in 11 days since the season’s restart. Bjorn Engels (Achilles) remains sidelined.

A point would be enough to move Villa out of the bottom three and Smith believes the fight to avoid the drop is now between just six clubs, with everyone above 15th-placed Brighton safe.

He said: “Newcastle won their first game back against Sheffield United, and that pretty much put them safe.

“Then it became three from six – and you’ve got to go and get some wins on the board to get yourself out of that. I think we are getting closer and closer to doing that.

“Win one game and Brighton are in it again. We are all looking to drag other teams into it.”

Smith believes his team have delivered everything but the win in their first three matches back but acknowledged they must develop a killer instinct, after watching a series of chances go begging at Newcastle.

He added: “The only thing which has been missing from our performances has been a win. The fact teams around us are losing helps because you end up closing the gap.

“But we have to make sure we control what we do, take our chances and win games.”

Matt Maher

By Matt Maher

Chief sports writer for the Express & Star.

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