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Gabby Agbonlahor leads the line against Norwich

Well, it's purely out of necessity, but Gabby Agbonlahor will be starting at striker when Aston Villa host Norwich City on Saturday.

Clive Rose/Getty Images

Striker depth was already beanpole-thin before Jordan Ayew unwisely got himself sent off against West Ham with a brutal elbow. Now, only Gabby Agbonlahor is healthy as far as out-and-out forwards go. Could the lack of depth give manager Rémi Garde a chance to experiment?

The entire squad is banged up. With Ashley Westwood and Carlos Sánchez hurt, and Idrissa Gana and Jordan Veretout coming off a game where they had to do extra running with the team down a man, it may be a chance to try out some of the youngsters.

And why not? The season is lost. Since Garde didn't get any new players, he should try some of the ones he'll have at his disposal next year. Kids like Jordan Lyden and Niall Mason are young and unproven, but could be valuable in the future.

It's also a match that Jack Grealish could start. Carles Gil could take part too, though playing earlier in the week he may not be fully fit. Leandro Bacuna will probably get another shot to show what he can do on the right side of midfield. His work rate is matched by few, even if his technique and decision-making lets him down on occasion.

Defensively, Micah Richards had a solid match, and his effort was shown when he made a great goal-line clearance to bail out his teammates. At right back, he can also contribute going forward. Jores Okore and Joleon Lescott have been decent, although Okore is at fault for playing the opposition onside leading up to both West Ham goals on Tuesday.

Norwich City may have beaten Villa 3-0 last time the teams met, but the Canaries aren't a whole lot better than the Villans. Sure, they may have 10 more points on the table, but hover just two points above the relegation zone.

Alex Neil's side struggles to score goals, having netted 28 on the campaign. Again, it's 10 more than Villa have managed, but it's far from an impressive figure. Dieumerci Mbokani and Nathan Redmond are the joint-top scorers for Norwich, with four goals each. Defensively, they've conceded six times more than their Saturday opponents. They'll play with two banks of four, and Wes Hoolahan behind the striker in a number 10 role.

Possible Lineups:

Norwich City (4-4-1-1): Declan Rudd; Ivo Pinto, Timm Klose, Sebastien Bassong, Martin Olsson, Jonny Howson, Alexander Tettey, Youssouf Mulumbu, Matt Jarvis; Wes Hoolahan; Dieumerci Mbokani.

Aston Villa (4-3-3): Mark Bunn; Micah Richards, Jores Okore, Joleon Lescott, Aly Cissokho; Leandro Bacuna, Idrissa Gana Gueye, Jordan Lyden; Scott Sinclair, Gabby Agbonlahor, Jack Grealish.

Who would you play if you were Rémi Garde? Let us know in the comments!

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