Last week was an opportunity we didn't take and because of that, Manchester United are a point behind us. Not taking the opportunity we have today would mean that we only have three wins out of the last six.
I know that sounds ridiculous to write, only three wins out of of the last six because it's actually very good. But if our form always shows we've won three out of the last six, it means we're not going to finish near the top four. Last year, we were one match shy of winning half our matches and we finished 7th. We need to see four in that form table.
So Fulham today is a little more important. It's not just about staying with the pack above, it's about form.
If we win, our form will be where we need it to be against a side that has one win in the last six. If we don't win, it gives all the teams below us a big opportunity next time out and things could look very different after Spurs.
But we're at home and everyone knows all the above and our manager is one of the best at this. But it will be hard and it will mean things have to click, but I just think they will. Or let me say, I hope they will.
Match facts from the BBC
- Fulham's only league victory in their past 19 visits to Villa Park came in April 2014 (D7, L11). They have lost on all four subsequent trips.
- Aston Villa are on a run of four straight home wins against Fulham: two in the Premier League and two in the Championship.
- Villa are vying to win a 13th top-flight home game in a row for the first time in 40 years.
- Unai Emery's side can equal the club record of 21 Premier League victories in a calendar year, set in 1998. Only Manchester City have won more often in 2023.
- They could also start a season with six straight home league wins for the first time since 1959. They last managed this in the top flight in 1932.
- Aston Villa have scored three goals or more in each of their five Premier League home matches in 2023-24. The only side to do so in six successive home fixtures from the beginning of a season is Manchester City last year.
- The Villans are unbeaten in the past 19 Premier League games in which they took the lead, including seven wins out of seven this season .
- A sixth league win in a row against London opposition would be an unprecedented feat for Aston Villa.
- Douglas Luiz has provided a goal or assist in each of Villa's seven home league matches since the 1-0 win against Fulham in April. It's the longest run ever by an Aston Villa player in the Premier League.
- Fulham have only won five of their 85 Premier League away fixtures against sides starting the day in the top six (D22, L58).
- All three of their league victories this season were against teams who start the weekend below them in the table.
- However, the Cottagers are yet to suffer consecutive league defeats in 2023-24.
- They only have nine league goals this season and are on a run of seven successive games without scoring in the first half.
- Raul Jimenez has gone 33 Premier League appearances without a goal since scoring in Wolves' 4-0 home win against Watford in March 2022.
- Timothy Castagne is one short of making 100 Premier League appearances.