Aston Villa v Swansea preview
Last Updated: 19/10/18 1:28pm
Captain James Chester will return for Dean Smith's first game in charge of Aston Villa.
The defender missed the 2-1 defeat at Millwall through suspension but is available for the visit of Swansea. Scott Hogan is fit again after a groin injury but Keinan Davis remains sidelined with his own groin problem. Smith, a boyhood Villa fan, was appointed last week after leaving Brentford.
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Swansea striker Wilfried Bony is back in training after his long-term knee injury. The 29-year-old Ivory Coast international has not featured for the Swans since their Premier League relegation in May.
But he will not play at Villa Park as he builds up fitness while Jordi Govea is also close to a return. The left-back, who joined from Real Madrid in July, will return to training next week following a hamstring tear.
Aston Villa have lost their last five league matches against Swansea, all in the Premier League between April 2014 and March 2016.
Swansea have lost all five of their away league matches against Aston Villa outside the top-flight, though these matches were played between 1936 and 1972.
Aston Villa striker Tammy Abraham has scored 31 league goals in his career - including five last season for Swansea - with all 31 scored from inside the box.
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Swansea are the only Championship team yet to score from a set piece this season, while Aston Villa have conceded more set piece goals than any other side (11).
None of the last six permanent Aston Villa managers have won their first league match in charge (McLeish, Lambert, Sherwood, Garde, Di Matteo and Bruce) since Gerard Houllier won his first in September 2010 against Wolves.
Swansea haven't scored a first half goal in an away league match since December 2017 against Everton - they've played 16 games on the road since, scoring all 10 goals in the second half of games.
What a massive occasion this will be for Dean Smith! His first game in charge of his boyhood club at Villa Park against tough opposition should make for a fantastic encounter, and he'll be desperate to get off to a winning start.
Swansea have struggled for consistency so far this season and managed to lose at home to Ipswich before the international break, and it will seem like forever that Graham Potter has had to dwell on that defeat. I'm going to back Smith to get off to a perfect start.
David Prutton predicts: 3-1 (14/1 with Sky Bet)