Aston Villa vs Chelsea – Premier League preview and team news

Chelsea will be hoping to extend their unbeaten run in the Premier League to four games and maintain their five-point lead at the top by seeing off an Aston Villa side that is in desperate form.

After they had shown faint signs of a possible recovery in home matches against Liverpool and Championship leaders Bournemouth, Villa found themselves trounced by Arsenal in a miserable performance on Sunday, which only served to intensify the growing calls from supporters for manager Paul Lambert to leave.

That there was such a gulf on the day between the two sides at the Emirates Stadium was worrying for the West Midlands club, who are now very much in another battle to stay in the Premier League. New signing Carles Gil looks bright, but everywhere around him confidence is low.

And that is an area Chelsea will be keen to exploit. Their last Premier League away game at Swansea City showed how devastating they can be when on top form, so an early goal for the Blues here would be an ominous sign for Villa. Meanwhile, deadline day signing Juan Cuadrado is looking to impress on his debut.

The Colombian winger joins a side that is now firm favourites to win the title, especially after they managed to hold on at home to rivals Manchester City last time out, where Loic Remy was handed the lone striker role and took his opportunity perfectly. He is expected to continue ro deputise for Diego Costa.

Aston Villa could have Joe Cole and captain Ron Vlaar back, but they are still without Libor Kozak and Philippe Senderos.

Cuadrado is likely to start on the bench for Chelsea, who could have Cesc Fabregas and Filipe Luis back after injury.

See what the expert tipsters at OLBG are tipping on Aston Villa v Chelsea

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