Premier League: Aston Villa and Reading go in search of much-needed win
Last Updated: 27/11/12 9:41am
Paul Lambert: Looking for Aston Villa to start pulling clear of trouble
Aston Villa and Reading will get the opportunity to clamber out of the drop zone, for 24 hours at least, on Tuesday.
Villa briefly hauled themselves out of the bottom three on Saturday, following a goalless draw with Arsenal, but slipped back again on Sunday after seeing Southampton overcome Newcastle.
Paul Lambert will have been pleased with the defensive effort from his side against the Gunners, but they have gone two games without finding the target and have picked up just one win in nine.
Reading have fared little better over recent weeks and currently sit second from bottom in the Premier League standings.
The Royals have suffered only five defeats this season - as many as Fulham and Tottenham - but a solitary success in 12 top flight outings has left them languishing towards the foot of the division.
An agonising 3-2 defeat by Wigan over the weekend will have done little for morale in the Madejski Stadium camp, but a trip to Villa Park in midweek does offer an immediate opportunity to make amends and take precious points off a fellow struggler.
Aston Villa captain Ron Vlaar is an injury doubt for the crucial bottom of the table clash.
The central defender picked up a calf injury during the draw with Arsenal and was substituted early in the second half.
If he is ruled out, then Matt Lowton is likely to partner Ciaran Clark at the heart of the defence with Eric Lichaj being recalled at right-back.
McDermott may decide to mix things up after seeing Reading come undone at Wigan, with Pavel Pogrebnyak and Garath McCleary the most likely to come back into contention for starting berths.
It could, however, be that those on show at the weekend will be given another opportunity to impress, with the Royals having no fresh injury or suspension concerns to contend with.
Jimmy Kebe (groin), Alex McCarthy (shoulder), Danny Guthrie (hip) and Jem Karacan (knee) all remain on the sidelines.
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