Fulham vs. Aston Villa, open match thread: Benteke is back

Bryn Lennon

Christian Benteke returns! Join us for plenty of discussion of Aston Villa's trip to Craven Cottage to face Fulham.

With Manchester United losing to Newcastle yesterday, Aston Villa can now equal the defending champions on points (and potentially on goal difference as well, though they'd have to really lay the wood to the home side) with a win today over Fulham. The Cottages are in new hands, with Martin Jol out and his former assistant Rene Meulensteen in. They looked much better on Wednesday against Spurs than they had in recent weeks, but they still enter the day with a seven-game losing streak. This would be a very good time for Villa to do what's expected of them and take all three points.

Of course, consistency isn't a given with this side, because of course it's not. Maybe one day we'll be at the point where Villa come into a game the clearly superior team and feel reasonably confident they'll manage to get the job done, but we're not there yet. But with three more winnable games on tap before the end of the calendar year, taking full points back to Birmingham could set up a pretty nice finish to 2013.

Thoughts on the lineup? The backline, featuring the return of Chris Herd, seems awfully weak. And we don't have news on Libor Kozak, although it's presumed he's injured since he's not even on the bench. Let's hope it's the day for Christian Benteke to get back into goalscoring form. Oh, and Gabby Agbonlahor wears the captain's armband.

Fulham: Stekelenburg, Riise, Senderos, Sidwell, Berbatov, Kacaniklic, Karagounis, Hughes, Dejagah, Riether, Parker

Subs: Kasami, Ruiz, Stockdale, Richardson, Duff, Zverotic, Vigen, Christensen

Aston Villa:Guzan, Herd, Baker, Clark, Bacuna, El Ahmadi, Delph, Westwood, Agbonlahor, Weimann, Benteke

Subs:Steer, Lowton, Helenius, Albrighton, Bowery, Sylla, Tonev

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join 7500 To Holte

You must be a member of 7500 To Holte to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at 7500 To Holte. You should read them.

Join 7500 To Holte

You must be a member of 7500 To Holte to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at 7500 To Holte. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9353_tracker