Manchester United
Manchester United

Manchester United look to consolidate their position at the top of the Premier League table with a win against Aston Villa at Villa Park.

Where to Watch Live

Kick-off is set for 5.30 GMT. Live coverage will be available on Sky Sports 2, Sky Sports HD 2 and Sky Sports 3D. Watch highlights of the game on Match of the Day on BBC One at 10.50 pm GMT.

Overview

United have had a fantastic start to the season, winning eight out of 10 league games played and also sealing top spot in Group H of the Champions League with two matches to spare. Sir Alex Ferguson's side defeated Arsenal 2-1 at Old Trafford last week and benefited from Chelsea and Manchester City both dropping points to take pole position, in what already seems like a three-horse race for the Premier League title.

Villa, on the other hand, are 17th in the league table, just four points above the drop zone. However, the Birmingham outfit are now starting to look like a resurgent side, after winning their last two matches, including a tricky away fixture at Sunderland. Paul Lambert's side beat Manchester City 4-2 in extra time in the third round of the League Cup in September and will be hoping for a similar result against the other Manchester giant.

History favours United in this fixture as Ferguson's side are unbeaten in their last 16 top-flight visits to Villa Park. The Villans now face the tough task of overpowering the visitors, having triumphed in just one of their last 33 league meetings against the Red Devils.

Form Guide

Aston Villa

  • Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W W D L L
  • Last Result: Sunderland 0 - 1 Aston Villa

Manchester United

  • Last Five (all competitions, most recent first): W W L W W
  • Last Result: Sporting Braga 1 - 3 Manchester United

Team News

Aston Villa: Lambert is struggling with injuries to his key players as Darren Bent, Richard Dunne, Charles N'Zogbia and Gary Gardner remain sidelined, while Joe Bennett, Chris Herd and Nathan Baker are doubtful. Eric Lichaj will serve a one-match suspension after picking up his fifth yellow card of the season at Sunderland. However, Karim El Ahmadi will return, after a one-game ban. Lambert has been deploying a 4-2-3-1 system in recent games and this is expected to continue.

Manchester United: The Red Devils have a fresh injury worry as Nani joins Shinji Kagawa, Nemanja Vidic and Phil Jones on the sidelines, with a hamstring injury. Meanwhile, Jonny Evans, who has a niggling groin problem, is also a doubt. Ferguson is unlikely to opt for the diamond shape against Villa, who like to play wide. So it's going to be one of 4-4-1-1 or 4-2-3-1 that United will deploy.

Possible Starting Line-ups:

Aston Villa (4-2-3-1): Guzan; Lowton, Vlaar, Clark, Stevens; El Ahmadi, Bannan; Weimann, Ireland, Agbonlahor; Benteke

Manchester United (4-4-1-1): de Gea; Rafael, Ferdinand, Smalling, Evra; Valencia, Carrick, Scholes, Young; Rooney; van Persie