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Aston Villa vs Stevenage betting tips: FA Cup Third Round preview, predictions and odds

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Match preview

Unai Emery is a master of knockout competitions, having won the UEFA Europa League four times as a manger.

So, can he lead Aston Villa to their 12th FA Cup Final, as they seek to win the trophy for the first time since 1957?

Well, since his appointment on 1 November, Emery has accumulated ten points from five Premier League games, only beaten by Liverpool so far.

Last weekend, Villa swatted aside Tottenham in North London, before only managing a 1-1 draw with Wolves on Wednesday.

Danny Ings equalising in that one, before Leon Bailey squandered a golden chance to win it in stoppage time.

This all leaves the Claret and Blue Army in 11th, having been 17th when Steven Gerrard was sacked.

Here, will Villa safely get through to round four?

Stevenage meantime have already had to overcome Gateshead and King’s Lynn Town just to get this far, dreaming of getting further for the first time in nine seasons.

Despite finishing 21sth last season, the Boro are currently pushing for promotion out of League Two.

Steve Evans’ side sit second and are unbeaten in nine, most-recently beating Gillingham on Monday, with Carl Piergianni the only goal-scorer.

So, Stevenage will travel to Villa Park full of confidence, but the host’s quality should see them comfortably get through.

Aston Villa team news

Emi Martínez made his first appearance since the World Cup Final on Wednesday, but Robin Olsen could be back between the sticks for this one.

Diego Carlos and Jacob Ramsey are out-long term, while John McGinn will also miss this one, but he should be back for Leeds on Friday.

If Unai Emery does rotate his XI here, Calum Chambers, Ludwig Augustinsson, Leander Dendoncker, Philippe Coutinho and Danny Ings are prime candidates to come in.

Coutinho has four FA Cup goals to his name, one of which came against Villa at Wembley for Liverpool.

Predicted XI (4-2-2-2): Olsen; Cash, Chambers, Bednarek, Augustinsson; Sanson, Dendoncker; Bailey, Coutinho; Ings, Watkins.

Stevenage team news

Steve Evans’ team is usually deployed in a 5-3-2 formation, which should be ideal for this tough assignment.

Jordan Roberts is Boro’s top scorer this season with eight, scoring and getting sent off in round one at Gateshead.

Striker Danny Rose meantime has six FA Cup goals to his name, although none of these have come against Premier League opposition.

Predicted XI (5-3-2): Ashby-Hammond, Luther James-Wildin, Sweeney, Piergianni, Vancooten, Clark; Reeves, Gilbey, Roberts; Rose, Norris.

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Aston Villa vs Stevenage: Head to head statistics

Ben Gray

Ben Gray

Arsenal fan – follow them over land and sea (and Leicester); sofa Celtic supporter; a bit of a football '"encyclopedia".

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