Aston Villa team news: Gerrard game-plan claim emerges ahead of Crystal Palace clash

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Express and Star journalist Luke Hatfield believes that we will see the 4-3-3 formation more under new Aston Villa head coach Steven Gerrard.

The former Rangers manager replaced Dean Smith in the Villa Park dugout, putting pen-to-paper on a three-and-a-half-year deal with Aston Villa.

Did the new formation work for Gerrard in his first match in charge of Villa?

The new Villa head coach got his Premier League managerial career underway against Brighton and Hove Albion last weekend in front of the Villa Park faithful, with his new side running out 2-0 winners.


It was the visitors who had the majority of possession though with 63% to Villa’s 37%, but the hosts had more shots with nine, including five on target, as they took two of their chances late on.

Gerrard opted to start with a front three of Emi Buendia, Danny Ings and Ollie Watkins, with the latter opening the scoring for Villa on 84 minutes, before captain Tyrone Mings wrapped up all three points on 89 minutes and ensured the new Villa head coach got off to the best possible start.

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The victory saw Villa climb to 15th in the league table and move onto 13 points, but more importantly it stopped the run of defeats they were on, as prior to the Brighton match, the club has lost their previous five games in succession.

What has Hatfield said about the 4-3-3 formation?

Hatfield told GIVEMESPORT that he expected Steven Gerrard would look to play the 4-3-3 formation in his first game at the helm, but now it’s about finding the right players to fit the system.

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The journalist said: “The 4-3-3 is something we’re going to see more and more under him, it’s the formation we expected and it’s the formation we got in his first game. It’s just finding the right pieces to fit the puzzle I think.”

Will Gerrard look to find the right pieces to fit the puzzle in January?

According to 90min, Gerrard has told the Villa hierarchy that he is interested in signing players from his former club Glasgow Rangers when the January window opens.

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The names mentioned in the report are Nathan Patterson, Glen Kamara, Ryan Kent and Borna Barisic, but it does also state that the Scottish Champions won’t allow their squad to be decimated during the winter window.

With just over five weeks until the transfer window opens, there is plenty of football to be played, giving Gerrard the opportunity to assess his current squad and see where he may want to strengthen.

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