Premier League final day: Villa vying for momentous win over Burnley
Villa Park will host its final Premier League fixture of the season when Aston Villa host already relegated Burnley, with Tim Sherwood having made sure there will be further top-flight action for the West Midlands club next term after securing survival.
Although, having retained the Villans’ top tier status, confident coach Sherwood will now be aiming to build momentum ahead of their FA Cup final encounter with current holders Arsenal at Wembley after their final day clash against Burnley (27/10 with Coral to win to nil).
Villa looked to be gathering a good spell of form ahead of their Wembley meeting with the Gunners, after back-to-back victories over Everton and West Ham United, but a shocking 6-1 thrashing at the hands of Southampton halted that run and Sherwood hopes his side can learn from their recent mistakes.
“It won’t be forgotten because there are things we need to learn from, but the objective when I arrived was to keep the club in the Premier League, so it’s job done,” stated Sherwood.
“We need to take it on the chin and get it out of our system as quickly as possible. It’s hard for me to make too many judgements about individual players based on 45 minutes.”
Despite such a 6-1 drubbing by Ronald Koeman’s Saints, Sherwood declared that he won’t make wholesale changes ahead of Burnley’s visit on the final day of the season (5/2 to cause an upset).
“It would be mad to change anything because our preparation has been the same when we’ve been winning games,” continued Sherwood.
“I’ve got belief in the way I want to work and how I want the players to play and in the main it has worked.”
Brilliant Belgium international frontman Christian Benteke has enjoyed a rampantly rejuvenated run of goalscoring form since Sherwood’s arrival, striking 13 times in as many games for club and country. The in-form frontman is 4/1 to open proceedings on home soil, while wideman Scott Sinclair is an 11/4 chance to net anytime following his permanent switch from Manchester City.
At the other end, Burnley fans may well witness Danny Ings donning a Clarets shirt for the final time, with the star striker set to depart in the summer upon his current contract expiring. The prolific poacher was recently selected in the England Under-21 squad for this summer’s European Championships, and is 6/1 to score last in what is sure to be his last appearance for the club.
Sean Dyche’s men have already sealed their immediate return to the Championship next term but, with Villa possibly having one eye on their upcoming Wembley outing, Burnley could give their fans one last memorable top-flight moment at Villa Park.