In case you've been lulled into a coma by the international break, let us remind you: Aston Villa host Swansea City on Saturday. Now, normally it wouldn't be too nerve-wracking to face a side promoted just two seasons ago. Well, except Newcastle. Ok, perhaps that theory no longer stands. But still, there's reason to be scared of the Swans (how often has that sentence ever been written?) They're second in the table based on goal difference, having destroyed QPR 5-0 on the first day of the season and then beat West Ham United 3-0. Last time around, they drew with Sunderland 2-2.
But a bit of good news: Swansea are facing an injury crisis. The bad news? It only involves their defence. Left-back Neil Taylor suffered a broken ankle against Sunderland, and he's out for the season. (Guess who broke him? Go on, guess!) Defender Kyle Bartley has a ruptured quad. To add to their woes, centre-back Chico Flores was shown a straight red in their last match.
Swansea's loss is Villa's gain, right? You'd think so. Except, as Gareth pointed out, you could set up four plastic cones on the back line and Paul Lambert's men would still have trouble scoring. The trouble is, you need the ball to score -- and this side is much more adept at possession football than the Villa. It'll be like that day after you had a terrible haircut and the school bully grabs your cap and tosses it around to all your friends while you jump helplessly with your hands in the air.
But, hey, if Villa manage to steal that ball, we're in with a chance.