Aston Villa will be without Jack Grealish, Carles Gil and Jores Okore for the visit of Manchester United with respective hamstring and knee injuries, manager Tim Sherwood has confirmed. Grealish suffered a hamstring blow during pre-season, while Gil complained of a knee injury mid-way through Villa's summer schedule.
Okore remains out with a knee problem, which the Denmark international was nursing during the back end of last season, and is not expected to return until September. All three players missed the opening day win over newly promoted AFC Bournemouth and their absence will see them miss the club's first home game of the campaign.
"Carles Gil's not fit, Jack Grealish is not fit and Jores Okore is not fit," Sherwood told a pre-match press conference to preview the visit of United, according to AVFC.co.uk. "There's a few who have got a few more training days under their belt, which will help them."
Speaking earlier in August to Villa's official website, the 46-year-old manager added: "Jack and Carles are still out injured. Once we get everyone fit and fighting for places, it gives us a lot of options to play different ways, which will be crucial. Jack and Carles are training. They have had a few training sessions, but we don't want to push them back too early because they've had soft tissue injuries. We don't want them to reoccur."
Traore signs from Barcelona
Amid the injury crisis, Villa's build-up to the game has been boosted by the confirmation of the signing of Adama Traore from Barcelona, the tenth addition made by Sherwood during a summer of upheaval at Villa Park. The 19-year-old arrives on a five-year deal but has not been registered in time to take his place in the Villa squad to face United.
Last term's relegation strugglers took a point off United in their home clash with Louis van Gaal's side in December 2014. While Villa overcame Bournemouth on the opening day, the Old Trafford side stumbled to victory over Tottenham Hotspur and with the visitors in transition, Sherwood fancies his team's chances.
"I expect a tough game, as you always do against Man United," he added. "It's a transition period for them as it was last pre-season. They've brought in a lot of new players again. I think every team has their own problems early on in the season. It's never fluid. It's whoever can get it together quicker than the other team. We fancy ourselves against Man United. We fancy ourselves against any team.
"That's the way you have to be. You have to have that mentality to think that you can impose yourself on the opposition and that's what we intend to do. We all want to win, we all want to do it for our fans. Aston Villa and Man United are two of the biggest clubs in this country so the demands are high."