Well, turns out this match is bigger than any of us thought it was going to be fifteen games into the season. Win and we could go second. And I'm just writing it how it is, I'm not making any predictions.
But if I were to make a prediction, I'd say if we won, the chances of us going second are quite slim.
And that is a huge if. But not impossible. That said, a big ask, even though we are playing at home.
Manchester City, under Pep are a different beast to all other Premier League clubs. And I for one, didn't think he'd be able to change the game to the extent he has in this League. But he has, he's a one of a kind. That said, we have quite a special manager too.
And I'm just writing it how it is. Special is what special does and our manager does it a certain way too. And there is something about playing at home tonight that could make it even more special.
And they wont be at their strongest. I'm not sure their slightly weaker side is that much weaker, but they will be without Rodri and he does seem to make the team tick, in a way others have in the past. I think I'm right in writing that he's suspended for tonight, along with Grealish.
But like I said, the next best side for Manchester City on their day would beat most other sides, so tonight will be tough. Tonight, if the rest of the season is anything to go by, could be a very entertaining game. Only Manchester City have scored more goals than us this season and that in itself is a very interesting statistic.
I'll be back later, can't wait for this!
Match facts from the BBC
- Aston Villa haven't beaten Manchester City in 15 competitive games since a 3-2 Premier League home win in September 2013 (D2, L13).
- City have only lost seven of the 46 Premier League meetings, winning 29.
- Unai Emery's side can equal the club record of 14 successive home league wins, set in 1903 and matched from December 1930 to October 1931, both in the top flight.
- Villa have won their opening six home matches in a top-flight season for the first time since 1932-33, when they began with eight straight victories at Villa Park.
- They can become the third team to score at least three goals in each of their opening seven top-flight home fixtures in a season, emulating Blackburn Rovers from 1889-90 and Villa themselves in 1897-98).
- Aston Villa's tally of 29 points equals their highest after 14 games of a Premier League season, first achieved in 1998-99. They drew their 15th match that season.
- Their total of 22 Premier League victories in 2023 is only bettered by the 26 for Manchester City. Villa haven't won more top-flight fixtures in a calendar year since equalling the club record of 24 in 1931.
- The Villans are the only club not to have dropped a Premier League point from a winning position this season, winning all nine games in which they have led.
- Ollie Watkins has scored 20 Premier League goals in 2023, one shy of the club record for a calendar year set by Dwight Yorke in 1996.
- Emery is winless in his 13 matches as a manager against Pep Guardiola and has lost all five meetings with Manchester City.
- City have drawn three top-flight games in a row and could equal their longest winless league run under Pep Guardiola of four matches from March to April 2017.
- They have conceded 10 goals from the 19 shots on target they faced across their past four matches in all competitions.
- Manchester City have not kept a clean sheet outside of Manchester since beating Burnley 3-0 on the opening Premier League weekend of the season.
- Nonetheless, they have amassed an unrivalled 83 Premier League points in 2023, nine more than next-best Arsenal prior to the midweek fixtures and 11 clear of Villa in third.
- The reigning champions have won 25 of their past 26 league games played on Wednesdays, with the exception being a 1-1 draw at Brighton in May this year. Their last league defeat on a Wednesday came at Leicester City on Boxing Day 2018.
- Manchester City have lost the last four domestic games in which Rodri did not play.
- Ruben Dias is one short of 100 Premier League appearances.