FA Cup can be perfect tonic for Villa

Aston Villa v Ipswich

PAUL LAMBERT is under huge pressure at the moment but I reckon he’ll be welcoming an FA Cup tie right now.

There are many people who reckon Aston Villa are set for an embarrassing fall at home to Ipswich but my money is on the Premier League outfit at a decent price.

Clearly Villa are in poor form though the 2-2 draw against Swansea did at least end a sequence of horror defeats. But the pressure’s off and it isn’t as though they are up against a side setting the Championship alight.

Ipswich are themselves in a relegation scrap and Mick McCarthy has said he’ll make changes. I also like Leeds at home to injury-hit Birmingham but Villa are my main bet on Saturday.

Recommendation
Aston Villa

Match in Focus

19:45 TODAY

West Ham v Astra Giurgiu

Home Win Draw Away Win
Key stats
  • West Ham have kept clean sheets in three of their four Europa League qualifiers
Expert verdict
West Ham needed a penalty shootout to see off Birkirkara in the last round and will have to improve to overcome Romanians Astra, who visit Upton Park in the first leg. Astra reached the group stage last year and will be no pushovers but the Hammers should be feeling the benefits of their pre-season work and can secure a narrow advantage.

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