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SUNDERLAND have lost just one of their last five Premier League trips to Villa Park (W2 D2 L1).
This fixture is so crunch you can almost hear the sound it would make, something like biting into a pork scratching possibly?
Under their new knee-sliding, arm-waving Italian, Sunderland's survival chances have suddenly taken on a much rosier tint following consecutive Premier League victories for only the third time all season.
Aston Villa meanwhile have let their own purple patch of three league wins in four turn into three in seven ahead of hosting the Black Cats.
The midlanders prevailed by just a solitary goal at the Stadium of Light earlier in the season and, with so much at stake, you'd expect another tight one.
Villa have conceded in their last 18 Premier League games, the longest such run of the season.
Clearly one of Aston Villa's major weaknesses is their inexperienced defence which has leaked goals like a colander this season.
Although they again have Ron Vlaar adding a wiser head to their fledgling back four, the likes of Ciaran Clark, Nathan Baker, Joe Bennett and Matthew Lowton – all 23 or younger – have too often been left to marshal themselves.
Still, at least Paul Lambert's side have been able to find the net regularly since the turn of the year. In their last 12 Premier League outings, only the two Manchester clubs have prevented Villa from finding the back of the opposition net.
There have been five red cards in the last eight Barclays Premier League meetings between Sunderland and Aston Villa
Although this fixture does not immediately spring to mind as one of the tastier in the Premier League calendar, the stats don't lie. The meeting at the Stadium of Light earlier in the season was no exception.
The game may have been shy of goals but it did contain its fair share of yellow cards, five to be precise. Former Villa employee Craig Gardner saw red in this exact fixture last season and, when you throw in the tensions of relegation worry, especially for the home team, you have a potentially volatile situation.
Back there to be a sending-off @ 5.0
Back the draw @ 3.45
Back both teams to score @ 1.79