How Aston Villa could potentially line up this season if all their star players are fit and available.
Now that the transfer window has closed and Championship football will return this weekend, it is time to take a look at the best XI Aston Villa could potentially put out this season.
Manager Steve Bruce has a large and strong squad on his hands, but if all the players were fit and available here is the best team we think the 56-year-old should field.
As the fashion appears to dictate in English football currently, Bruce utilised a wing-back system in Villa’s last outing at Bristol City, but in truth the 4-2-3-1 more consistently used before is perhaps the best fit.
Securing Sam Johnstone on loan from Manchester United again this term was a superb signing and he is an automatic pick as goalkeeper, while fellow new face and captain John Terry is the standout option in central defence alongside James Chester.
The same goes for Neil Taylor at left-back, while on the opposite side youngster James Bree would perhaps be a better choice than the aging Alan Hutton and recovering Ritchie de Laet.
Mile Jedinak and Glenn Whelan are almost interchangeable as the defensive option in the middle, but the former just edges it for us, while Conor Hourihane offers the more attacking option – as shown by his hat-trick against Norwich City.
Andre Green can perhaps feel a little unfortunate not to be included, but this campaign did look set to be the one where Jack Grealish finally steps up before he suffered a freak kidney injury in pre-season.
Grealish should be back in action before Christmas, though, and alongside impressive Tottenham Hotspur loanee Josh Onomah and experienced new loan signing Robert Snodgrass from West Ham United, makes up an impressive attacking midfield.
Leading the line there is only one choice and that is Jonathan Kodjia, who scored 19 league goals in 2016/17 following his move from Ashton Gate and is well ahead of Scott Hogan and Ross McCormack in the pecking order. Youngsters Keinan Davis and Rushian Hepburn-Murphy will be pushing him for that spot soon, though.