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Nic Ladds 6th Dec 2008 - 19:26

Villans can steal all three points at Goodison

Aston Villa travel to Everton in a clash between two teams who have designs on finishing in the top four this season.

David Moyes has an injury crisis to deal with as Yakubu, Louis Saha and James Vaughan are all injured leaving Victor Anichebe (6/1 to score first) as the only recognised striker.

Everton will be hoping they can put aside their awful home record, which consists of one win this season, and continue their march up the table. They come off the back of a good away win at Tottenham, which will have the Toffees in a confident mood.

Aston Villa have already won four away matches this season and will be aware of Everton's poor home record and will hope to capitalise on this.

Either way this looks to be a very tight match with the odds reflecting this as Everton and Villa are both available at 13/8 with the draw at 23/10.

Villa are without Norwegian striker John Carew but in Gabriel Agbonlahor and Ashley Young they have two front men with electrifying pace that will keep the home side's defence busy all afternoon. The pair can be backed at 7/1 and 10/1 respectively to find the back of the net first.

Everton will be likely to play five in midfield due to their lack of strikers which will set this match up to be a tight affair. Villa certainly carry more of a goal threat and it is difficult to see where Everton's goals are going to come from.

Joleon Lescott is always a threat from set pieces (20/1 to score first) but in Martin Laursen and Carlos Cuellar Villa have two defenders who will not worry about the threat of balls coming across the area and they should be able to deal with any aerial threat Everton may offer.

Despite the pace on offer up front for Villa their last two games have ended in 0-0 draws. Due to Everton's lack of fire power and Villa's inability to find the back of the net no goalscorer at 17/2 may be better value than shorter prices about misfiring strikers.

The feeling is that Villa can edge this one in what is likely to be a low scoring affair (under two goals is available at 7/4) and due to the Toffees lack of presence up front Aston Villa to keep a clean sheet at 2/1 looks a decent bet.

Both teams know that a victory on Sunday would put them a step closer to breaking into the top four and both Martin O'Neill and David Moyes will be hoping their misfiring strikers can find their way to goal.

In what will be an extremely tight affair Villa's more potent threat up front means they should be able to take the three points in a low scoring game and Villa to win to nil at 11/4 looks the bet.

Recommendations:
Aston Villa to win to nil - 11/4

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