Robbie Savage: Tim Sherwood can't afford to mix and match against Birmingham

Tim Sherwood Press Conference 12/02/2014

The former Birmingham midfielder feels Aston Villa don't have the form or momentum to allow for experimentation on Tuesday night.

BT Sport pundit and former Birmingham City midfielder Robbie Savage believes Aston Villa boss Tim Sherwood can't afford to risk a 'mix-and-match team' during Tuesday night's cup tie, according to the Daily Mirror.

Indeed, Villa host Birmingham in the League Cup but are struggling for form while their fierce rivals have made an encouraging start to their campaign.

And Savage feels Sherwood will be forced into picking a strong team as a result.

Savage told the Daily Mirror: "Some managers use the Capital One Cup as a chance to make changes or rest players but I don’t think Sherwood can afford to risk a mix-and-match or half-and-half team.

"By all shapes, sizes and measurements, Birmingham are underdogs and they will fancy their chances in a one-off cup tie."

 2015/16 The Story So Far PointsWonDrawnLostGames
Birmingham 12 3 3 1 7
Aston Villa 4 1 1 4 6

As Opta stats show, Birmingham City go into this particular derby with a huge advantage over Aston Villa in terms of momentum.

Both teams, of course, are in different divisions but, in cup competitions, League Two sides can beat clubs more than one division above them with ease. Villa definitely shouldn't get complacent about their Premier League advantage over their Championship rivals.

Gary Rowett's Birmingham have won three out of seven and lost just once this season - a defeat that only came recently.

Aston Villa, meanwhile, have registered just one point in their last five games. No wonder Savage fancies his old team's chances!

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