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Aston Villa vs. Manchester City: ‘Citizens overwhelmingly heavy favourites to swat aside Villains’

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Aston Villa and Manchester City face each other at Villa Park in the Premier League on Sunday (16:30 GMT) after both sides secured positive results in their respective League Cup semi-final first legs.

Villa earned a hard-fought 1-1 draw at Leicester, while City won 3-1 at their rivals Manchester United after a scintillating first-half display.

In terms of the Premier League picture, Villa are locked in a relegation battle, currently sitting one point above 18th-placed Bournemouth.

KHARKIV, UKRAINE – OCTOBER 23, 2018: Manchester City players celebrate after David Silva scored a goal during the UEFA Champions League game against Shakhtar Donetsk at OSK Metalist stadium in Kharkiv

City, meanwhile, are third, 12 points clear of 5th-placed Sheffield United and 14 points behind the runaway leaders Liverpool.

The bookmakers have made them overwhelmingly heavy favourites to earn the three points at Villa Park.

City are 1/6 to win, with the draw 15/2.

A Villa win is a massive 12/1.

Injuries to Villa – with goalkeeper Tom Heaton and striker Wesley both ruled out for the season after sustaining knee injuries in their last league match at Burnley – may play a part in their incredibly long odds for a home side.

Jonathan Kodjia missed the midweek League Cup tie through illness and it remains to be seen whether manager Dean Smith turns to him as Wesley’s replacement or sticks with the striker-less system which worked against Leicester.

Jack Grealish will be crucial to the home side’s chances and at 5/1 he’s not a bad price to score anytime.

City also deployed a striker-less system in midweek, with Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero both starting from the bench. One of them, though, will surely return to the starting XI here. The Brazilian is 7/10 to score anytime, with the Argentinian 1/2.

Indeed, all of City’s potential goalscorers are at very short odds given their expected dominance, with Raheem Sterling 5/6, Riyad Mahrez 11/8 and Bernardo Silva 13/8.

I'm a freelance sports journalist who has worked for Goal & Bleacher Report amongst others. Get in touch, you're more than welcome to do so via Twitter.

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