Aston Villa Vs Everton, Sun 29 Aug 2010

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Aston Villa v Everton

Aston Villa: Friedel, Luke Young, Collins, Dunne, Warnock, Albrighton, Reo-Coker, Petrov, Downing, Ashley Young, Carew.

Subs: Guzan, Agbonlahor, Heskey, Cuellar, Lichaj, Bannan.

Everton: Howard, Hibbert, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, Arteta, Fellaini, Rodwell, Pienaar, Cahill, Beckford.

Subs: Mucha, Heitinga, Bilyaletdinov, Saha, Gueye, Osman, Coleman.

Agbonlahor on bench for Villains

Aston Villa striker Gabriel Agbonlahor is battling to be fit for the home Barclays Premier League clash with Everton.

Agbonlahor suffered what was described as "tight calves" during the Europa League exit at the hands of Rapid Vienna and was substituted in the hope of avoiding a lengthy lay-off.

Fellow forward John Carew's fitness will also be assessed after he missed the 3-2 reversal with an ongoing knee problem along with defender Richard Dunne (back).

Left-back Stephen Warnock and midfielder Stewart Downing will come back into the equation after being rested.

Villa caretaker boss Kevin MacDonald expects a new manager to be appointed by owner Randy Lerner in time for the clash at Stoke on September 13.

MacDonald will decide by Monday whether he wants to be considered for the post on a full-time basis as Ronald Koeman has declared his interest in the post.

The former Liverpool midfielder will be in charge for the Everton game as Villa look to bounce back from their Europa League exit at the hands of Rapid Vienna.

MacDonald said: "I have been in contact for a lot of the time with Mr Lerner. He's been very supportive of what's gone on.

"They have obviously been to watch the team play. To be fair, it's probably a bit both ways about the timescale.

"It's probably not nice for the fans but it's been difficult for them.

"You've got to remember it's difficult for myself and Mr Lerner. We are short staffed and there's everything going on that we are trying to sort out.

"My impression is, if I wish to be considered, they will do one or two interviews, if I was to be one of the names on the shortlist.

"They'd be hoping to get a new manager in before the league game against Stoke."

Captain Phil Neville is again doubtful with a foot injury as Everton prepare to Aston Villa.

Neville missed last week's draw with Wolves and the midweek Carling Cup thrashing of Huddersfield with the problem.

Forward Victor Anichebe is still sidelined with a knee problem while defender Joseph Yobo is also unlikely to be available due to a thigh strain. Yakubu missed the Huddersfield match through illness but has also had a knock in training and could miss out.

Everton boss David Moyes fears defending is a dying art in England but is determined to ensure it remains well practised at Goodison Park.

The new Barclays Premier League season has got off to an explosive, goal-laden start and a remarkable 38 were scored in last weekend's second round of matches.

Eighteen of those came in three games as Chelsea, Newcastle and Arsenal all recorded 6-0 victories.

It has made for exciting viewing but Moyes, a defender in his playing days with Dunfermline and Preston, is not about to abandon his pragmatic approach.

The Scot said: "I think the defending probably is getting a bit poorer at times.

"Defending is an art we are getting away from a bit. It is something we need to get back to because you build yourselves on teams who don't concede goals.

"I would prefer a 1-0, as a coach that's what you do. But I think football in Britain is changing as a whole. There is a different style, a more European style to the games being played.

"There is not as much crash, bang, wallop because I think with the European players and coaches coming into the teams, there is a change.

"There will always be an ingrained hard-working, industrial British style but I see a bit of change."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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