Leicester City vs Aston Villa preview: How to watch, kick off time, team news, predicted lineups and ones to watch
James Maddison and Douglas Luiz compete for possession at the King Power Stadium | Photo: Getty/ Malcolm Couzens

Leicester City and Aston Villa face off at the King Power Stadium as the Premier League returns from the international break.

Before the break, the two teams played out games that saw levels of success that were polar opposites. Leicester succumbed to a 3-0 defeat to West Ham United, while Villa dispatched the champions, Liverpool, with an unforseeable scoreline, beating them 7-2.

Both Leicester and Villa made up two of the top four before the international break, meaning that this game represents an early top of the table clash, with Leicester hoping that they can return to winning ways.

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Team news

Leicester currently find themselves in the midst of an injury crisis as the games come thick and fast.

Caglar Soyuncu picked up an abductor injury, meaning he could be unavailable for a number of weeks, while Daniel Amartey and Dennis Praet are sidelined with respective hamstring and knee injuries sustained before the break. Neither Ricardo Pereira nor Wilfred Ndidi are close to a return from their respective long-term injuries.

Jonny Evans and Jamie Vardy are doubts for the match, with the former developing abdominal pain while on duty with Northern Ireland.

James Maddison will be available to play part of the match, but will unlikely feature heavily as he returns from injury.

New signing Wesley Fofana could make his debut at the back for the Foxes, while Cengiz Under could make his first start.

Villa have no new injuries to contend with, meaning they are likely to play the same side that beat Liverpool emphatically.

Keinan Davis should be fit for the match despite suffering a slight calf injury.

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Predicted line-ups

Leicester: Schmeichel; Castagne, Morgan, Fofana, Justin; Mendy, Tielemans; Barnes, Perez, Under; Iheanacho.

Villa: Martinez; Cash, Konsa, Mings, Targett; Douglas Luiz, McGinn, Barkley; Trezeguet, Watkins, Grealish.

Last meeting

The last meeting between the sides represented the final match before the Premier League was halted by the pandemic, seeing Leicester run out 4-0 victors.

Harvey Barnes put the home side in front with 40 minutes played after beating an onrushing Pepe Reina to a through ball before slotting home.

Vardy then came on to score with virtually his first touch in the second half via the penalty spot, before notching his second in the 79th minute.

Barnes then secured his respective brace by converting in the 85th minute to cap off what was a very comfortable outing against the Villa side that knocked them out of the Carabao Cup semi-final over two legs.

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Ones to watch

Due to the lack of defensive options, it is very likely that Wesley Fofana will make his debut after his move from Saint Etienne.

The young defender was in good form for his old side, as well as for the France U21 side, of whom he kept two clean sheets with over the break.

The key threat that he will face will most likely be Jack Grealish, who himself made strides in the international game by picking up the man of the match award in the victory over Wales.

Grealish was also in top form in the league against Liverpool, meaning that Fofana will have be alert and show a maturity that exceeds his years in order to cope with such an opponent in his first Premier League outing.

Pre-match thoughts

Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers shared his thoughts on the opponents in his pre-match press conference.

He stated: "I think for last season it was always going to be difficult for Villa. Dean has done incredibly well. They didn’t quite get into their rhythm last season but they got the job done in the end." 

He added: "They’ve recruited very well, with the goalkeeper and Ross Barkley, he could blossom there. And Grealish staying is a massive help for them. It will be a really tough game for us."

Villa manager Dean Smith believes his side must be at their best when facing Leicester due to results last season.

He told Villa's official website: “We have to be very respectful of a team that’s gone to Manchester City and won 5-2. We won 7-2 against Liverpool, so there are two teams there that are very good.

“We’ve been stung there [the King Power] a couple of times last season and we have to make sure we continue our level of performance on Sunday.

“We have to be at our best. The last time we played there we got beat 4-0 just before lockdown.

“We’ve started the season well, there’s confidence within the group and a belief that we’re better this season. It’s a tough game but one we’re looking forward to.”

How to watch

The match will kick off at the King Power on Sunday 18 October at 19:15 and is available to purchase via Sky Sports Box Office.

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