Brentford v Aston Villa preview: Championship clash live on Sky Sports Football
Last Updated: 26/12/17 9:11am
Brentford will monitor the fitness of striker Lasse Vibe ahead of the home clash with Aston Villa.
Vibe scored both goals in the Bees' 2-1 win over Norwich on Friday night on his return from a hamstring injury, but the Dane left the action after 54 minutes to be replaced by Neal Maupay.
Boss Dean Smith made five changes for the game at Carrow Road, with Chris Mepham, Florian Jozefzoon, Kamohelo Mokotjo and Nico Yennaris all coming into the starting line-up. It remains to be seen if Smith sticks with a winning line-up or opts to make sweeping changes once again.
Aston Villa boss Steve Bruce will make changes, although he remains without defensive stalwarts John Terry and Chris Samba. Bruce said after Saturday's 2-2 home draw with Sheffield United that he will look to freshen up his team against the Bees, which could mean a first start since September for Gabriel Agbonlahor.
The striker had been sidelined for three months due to a calf injury before returning as a substitute at Derby last week. He also made a 20-minute appearance from the bench on Saturday.
On-loan Tottenham midfielder Josh Onomah (foot) is fit again and could return to the squad but Samba continues to struggle with the problem that has ruled him out of the last two matches and Terry's broken metatarsal will keep him on the sidelines.
Brentford's 3-0 win over Villa at Griffin Park last season is their only win in five previous home meetings in all competitions, losing the four other matches between 1935 and 1953.
Villa won five of six league meetings between 1935 and 1947 (D1) but have failed to win any of their last three across the last two seasons (D2 L1).
The Villans have won one of their last 21 away matches on Boxing Day (D7 L13), a 2-0 win at Derby in 1999.
After winning four of their previous five Boxing Day games in league competition (D1), the Bees are winless in the last three.
Aston Villa went to Griffin Park earlier this year and got absolutely turned over by Brentford, who put in a brilliant performance to win 3-0. There have been plenty of changes at both clubs since, however, and you'd expect this to be a very different game.
The Bees got a great win at Norwich on Friday night and have had nearly 24 extra hours to prepare for this one, but Villa are a tougher nut to crack now so I'll back a draw here.
David Prutton predicts: 1-1 with Ollie Watkins to score first (30/1 with Sky Bet)