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Aston Villa v Wolves: Shared points in the Midlands derby

Posted 26th August 2011

The Midlands derby kicks off another action packed weekend of Premier League football as Aston Villa take on Wolves. It should be a good contest at Villa Park between two rivals who find themselves high up the table after good starts to the season.

Aston Villa currently occupy 4th in the Premier League standings after taking four points from a possible six so far. It has been a good start for new manager Alex McLeish but a victory on Saturday would really mean acceptance by the Villa faithful.

After a dull opening fixture with a 0-0 draw against Fulham at Craven Cottage, Aston Villa kicked started their season with a 3-1 win over Blackburn Rovers at Villa Park last Saturday. The win even put the side on top of the Premier League for less than 24 hours.

However, what the manager will be really happy about is the team's performance as Villa totally dominated Rovers. They easily defeated their opponents and looked very threatening in attack with strikers Gabriel Agbonlahor, Emile Heskey and Darren Bent all getting among the goals. New signing in midfield Charles N'Zogbia was also impressive along with substitute Barry Bannan who came on.

Wolves find themselves up in the lofty position of 3rd in the Premier League after a great start to the season. Mick McCarthy's side have a 100% record after they won both their matches of the campaign so far.

First up was a good 2-1 win away to Blackburn in Ewood Park before their well-deserved 2-0 win at home against Fulham last Sunday. In that game, Wolves showed a real determination and commitment, and looked threatening upfront with Kevin Doyle, who got on the scoresheet, leading the line. The win meant Wolves had their best start to a season in 13 years and it was Mick McCarthy's 99th win in charge of the club. How he would love to mark a century of wins by Saturday afternoon.

In the betting, Aston Villa are favourites at evens with Unibet, with a Wolves win priced at 11/4 and a draw at 9/4.

It is tempting to take Villa as they are the home side but Wolves are riding high on confidence and they will want to take something from this game. Last season, Wolves actually won 1-0 at Villa Park and the season before they snatched a 2-2 draw so their record here is not that bad.

Also, after losing to Blackburn on the last day of the season in May, Wolves have played nine games since then, winning seven, losing one and drawing one. There is a definite improvement in Mick McCarthy's side and they can earn a draw on Saturday.

Tip #1: Back a draw at 9/4 with Unibet.