Sherwood’s Villa vying for repeat Baggies success in FA Cup clash
Aston Villa will be aiming for a repeat success of their recent Premier League triumph over West Bromwich Albion, when they host Tony Pulis’ Baggies in an FA Cup quarter-final encounter at Villa Park.
Tim Sherwood’s relegation-battlers, 12/1 with Coral to lift the cup this year, overcame their top-flight rivals in the last West Midlands derby at The Hawthorns, with Belgian frontman Christian Benteke slotting home an injury-time penalty to secure three points and a claim first win for their new boss.
Villa will hope to follow up that domestic league success in what will be the two sides’ second meeting in this competition during the Premier League era, with the hosts having won their first clash 4-0 in 1998, and the home side are 16/5 to win to nil this time out.
Both teams currently sit in the bottom half of the table, with Sherwood’s strugglers only three points above the drop zone, while West Brom have climbed to 13th place and are seemingly likely to secure their top-flight status this term.
Pulis’ men, 7/4 to triumph, come into the match on a better run of form to their opposition, having lost just one of their previous six matches in all competitions, including recent impressive league victories to nil over Swansea City and top four hopefuls Southampton.
Belgium international Benteke netted his first league goal since December in his side’s latest triumph over West Brom, and has also struck in this fixture in three consecutive seasons. Villa’s towering target man is 9/4 to continue that rampant run and bag another derby goal anytime.
Last term, midfield maestro Fabian Delph scored for both teams in a 4-3 Villa victory, helplessly doubling West Brom’s lead with an own-goal, before putting the Villans in front just before half-time, with a splendid strike. The England international, who recently signed a new long-term deal, is 8/1 to net again anytime.
The visitors will be relying on star striker Saido Berahino as their main scoring threat, with the rampant forward having fired in 18 times so far this current campaign, including an equaliser in the previous West Midlands derby meeting.
Brilliant Berahino is 6/1 to open proceedings this time out, and add to his four goals in his last five appearances.
Villa Park is set to host a possible tight match-up, with Villa having managed just three strikes in their last 12 league outings, and West Brom keeping three consecutive Premier League clean sheets.
With four draws in the last seven meetings between these sides, another stalemate is available at 11/5, with the in-form Baggies a 7/2 chance to secure victory to nil, having been beaten only once so far this calendar year under Pulis’ management.