Villa look to continue revenge renaissance against Rovers

Last updated : 25 January 2008 By Tom Vickers
Just over ten years ago Villa were humiliated at Ewood Park by Blackburn Rovers. The Claret and Blue were thrashed 5-0 which compounded a season of misery against Rovers after the reverse fixture ended in a 4-0 defeat at Villa Park.
The Villa suffered at the hands of Saturday's opposition on countless occasions during the 1990's but have crushed that hoodoo in this millenium. In fact, Villa could even gain real revenge as they won 4-0 at Ewood in November and a 5-0 victory tomorrow would see a true ten year turnaround.
O'Neill has enjoyed a 100% record against Mark Hughes so far and if that record continues Villa will hit the top four due to other clubs having F.A. Cup commitments.
The Northern Irishman has enjoyed nothing but success against Blackburn unlike some of his predecessors. He will hope to have Gareth Barry back for Saturday's clash after he missed the game at Liverpool due to a pelvic injury.
If the skipper fails to make it then Craig Gardner will again fill in on the right with Stiliyan Petrov retaining his central midfield role.
Scott Carson is likely to return in goal in place of solid debutant Stuart Taylor. Carson will line up behind Olof Mellberg who should start despite being linked with an immediate move to Juventus.
For the visitors, Ryan Nelsen will be out with Zurab Khizanishvili his replacement.
Tugay is also a doubt while Jason Roberts will hope to start after his goal at Bolton and with Benni McCarthy failing to find any sort of form.
McCarthy was a target for Villa in the 90's and would possibly win the award for player most rumoured to join the club. He has been lacklustre of late but everyone knows that he is a dangerman on his day.
Hopefully he won't be barking tomorrow as Villa will look to be top dogs and complete a great ten year turnaround. The Claret and Blue have almost become a bogey team for Blackburn.
A top four spot is the prize for a continuation of that renaissance on Saturday.
Come on Villa!