Sheffield United, Christmas message and pre-match video

Both teams on 37 points and the distinct possibility that at kick off we could both be out of the top six. If you wanted to know what was an important game, this is it. Of course, we could start the game still in the top six, but we'd be fortunate.

Either way, it's why this game is important. Some want to see the style of football change. Me, if we are to hope for promotion this season, I'd rather see the three points and I don't mind how we get it. But it's clear some have different views.

And we're all entitled to that. But what would you rather?

The game kicks off at 5.30pm and while John Terry and Andre Green are back training, they'll not be playing today. Davis is back after illness last week but Onomah and Lansbury are also not likely.

It will be nice to play with a striker and when Terry is back, I think it's clear he'll be back in, but another question, what happens to Green after a very promising start?

I'll be back before kick off but before I go, Merry Christmas you miserable lot.

Match facts from the BBC

  • This is the first league meeting between the sides since May 2007, when Villa won 3-0 in the Premier League with goals from Gabriel Agbonlahor, Ashley Young and Patrik Berger.
  • The Blades are winless in 10 league visits to Villa Park since a 2-0 win in January 1966 courtesy of a double from Wales international Gil Reece double.
  • Sheffield United have not kept a clean sheet in the Championship in 10 games since 14 October - the longest run in the division.
  • Aston Villa have won 12 home league matches in 2017, their best total in a calendar year since 1996 - the last time they won more often in a calendar year at Villa Park was 18 in 1983.
  • Sheffield United, have won 27 league matches in 2017 - their most in a calendar year since they joined the Football League in 1892.
  • Of the 18 players with seven-plus goals in the Championship this season, Villa top scorer Albert Adomah has the best shot conversion rate (31.3%).

Pre-match video